Carly packed a tote bag with goodies for Liberty and muttered to herself that she had to keep in mind that it was all to help the girl. She left her house and headed for the hospital.
At the Snyder farm, Janet read a pamphlet about chemotherapy and discussed its side effect with Jack, as they waited for Liberty to appear. Janet had never considered some of the side effects, and their descriptions frightened her. Jack gave her a pep talk about keeping their eyes on the prize, and that was a happy, healthy daughter. Liberty joined them, but she was focused exclusively on the fact that she was about to receive a poison that was supposed to kill something in her body that was trying to kill her.
The trio went to the hospital, and Janet attempted to distract Liberty from what she was feeling, but her daughter just wanted the treatment to be over. Liberty excused herself to go to the bathroom, and Jack complimented Janet on how well she was holding up. Janet hugged him, and Carly walked in and saw the couple. She backed off and ran into Liberty, who had been crying in the ladies' room. Carly handed the girl the tote bag with sketchpads and pencils, and Liberty asked Carly to "stick around." A nurse called Liberty into the treatment area, so Liberty hugged her mother and went with the nurse.
After some time, Carly went in to sit with Liberty, who was cheerfully designing her prom dress. She was excited until she waved her arms and disturbed the needle in her arm. The nurse checked and found it all right, but Liberty's better mood was gone. She told Carly that she might not even make it to prom, and that made Carly sad.
Outside in the corridor, Janet told Jack how helpless she felt about keeping her daughter safe. Carly walked out and told Janet that Liberty needed her mother, so Janet went in. Jack got Carly a coffee and told her that he was glad she was there. Susan Stewart walked by and asked how Liberty was. She also suggested to Jack that he have every family member tested as a potential blood marrow donor. She said anyone who was compatible could be a donor, whether a family member or not. Carly suggested that they get tested while they waited, and she told Jack that they could do it together.
Jack and Carly were successful in getting their blood tests, but Carly felt a bit woozy afterwards. Jack got her a chocolate bar, and Janet joined them. Jack told her what he and Carly had done, "just in case," but Janet was irritated because it had never occurred to her that chemotherapy would not work for Liberty. Carly went in to say goodbye to Liberty, as Jack calmed Janet by telling her that Susan had made the suggestion. Liberty was grateful to Carly for keeping her company, but she did ask if Carly was still in love with Jack. Carly dodged the question.
Janet hated to think that her daughter might endure the chemo treatments and still not be all right. Jack said it was just good sense to have a backup plan, and the bone marrow donors was a good one. Janet saw the truth in his idea, and she hugged Jack as Carly passed through on her way out.
Alison had the day off from the hospital, but she was there as a patient. Susan spotted her in one of the treatment rooms and asked why she was there. Alison said she was "meeting a friend," but then she admitted that she was there to get a prescription for a "morning-after" pill. Susan asked if her daughter had discussed the matter with Casey, but Alison refused to talk about it. Susan suddenly realized that Alison's partner was not Casey, but the girl only told her mother that she had "made a mistake."
Susan dredged up Alison's history and asked why she had slept with someone else if she was so ready to marry Casey in a week. Alison would still not say who the man was, but Susan correctly guessed that it was Mick Dante. She remembered Barbara's blunt warning about Mick, and she told Alison that she obviously wasn't ready to get married. Alison protested that it had only been one time with Mick, and they were "just friends."
Susan asked if that friendship meant "with benefits," Alison was horrified and said that the sexual encounter had "just happened." She said being with Mick was like an out-of-body experience, but Susan did not trust Mick, and she was worried that her daughter was involved with him. Susan wrote a prescription for the morning-after pill, and advised Alison to "take it and not look back."
At Fairwinds, Barbara grabbed Paul's arm and yelled at him to let Mick go. "He's your father!" Barbara screamed, and Paul recoiled. He made his mother repeat herself, but he decided that she was making a sick joke. Mick assured Paul that Barbara was telling the truth, but Paul didn't even know how to respond. Mick called Paul "son," and that set Paul off again. He was incredulous that Mick could even make such a statement, but Mick claimed that his anti-aging treatments had made him younger.
Mick continued to say that he would like to make up for damage that James had inflicted on his family, and Barbara backed him up. She said that Mick's fingerprints and scars proved the truth. Emily wasn't buying a word of that, as Paul threw Mick to the floor. Mick got up again, and Paul went after him and accused him of "preying" on his mother's vanity and his wife's desire to have another child. Paul called Mick "sick," and declared that he was either a liar or just plain insane.
Barbara wanted to prove that Mick was really James Stenbeck, and Mick pleaded for another chance. He said he had returned to Oakdale for Paul, as his "son" reminded him that he had left Oakdale in a coffin. Paul refused to believe that Mick was anyone but a con man, and as Mick tried to convince him otherwise, Emily admitted a policeman. The cop arrested Mick for fraud and assault, as Paul suggested they add another charge: "impersonating a lunatic." The officer led Mick away, but Paul detained him for a minute. He yanked some hair from Mick's head and then told the officer to proceed.
Barbara told Emily that her daughter-in-law's only chance of getting pregnant had just been arrested, but Emily said sadly that was never possible because it was all part of Mick's scam. Barbara declared that the anti-aging treatments were real, but Emily suddenly decided that she had to warn Alison. After Emily left, Paul asked his mother how long she had known that Mick was pretending to be James. She answered, "A few weeks," and Paul asked for one good reason why Barbara shouldn't rot in jail along with Mick for building up false hopes in Emily.
The only part that Paul could swallow was that somehow James had been responsible for sending Mick Dante to them as a "last laugh from the grave." Barbara was still on her soapbox about James's "making amends" as Mick, but Paul said that she had fallen for that line because of her own desperate need to feel young again. Barbara swore that the treatments had made her appear younger, but Paul shook his head. He told her that to him, his mother looked even older and "very much like a fool." Paul threw his mother out of his house.
Alison retuned to Casey's and found a note from him that said he had gone to have his tuxedo fitted. She took the morning-after pill from her purse and was reading the directions when someone knocked on the door. It was Emily, who said she had news that Alison wouldn't like. Emily told her sister that Mick had just been arrested for putting Emily in a coma, and, besides, he was not who he said he was. Emily recounted how she had confronted Mick about the photos of Paul as a young man, and then everything had gone black.
Alison was not inclined to believe Emily until she said that incident had taken place in the old church bell tower. That eliminated some of Alison's doubt, but the girl was still hesitant. Emily went on that Mick was claiming to be a younger version of James Stenbeck, but in reality he was a con man who had fooled them all. Alison could not understand why Mick would make up a tale like that, and she blamed herself for taking him to meet Paul and Emily as possible investors. Emily left, and Alison swallowed her pill and took off.
At the police station, Mick told the officer who was fingerprinting him that everyone was going to get a surprise when the cops revealed the print results. He suggested that his "son," Paul, be invited especially. The officer put Mick in the interview room, as Alison walked in. She joined him in the room, and he volunteered to explain everything. Alison demanded the truth, and Mick said that she was the only person he had been completely honest with. Alison asked who he was, but Mick instead asked her for a favor.
Mick began by talking about the connection they had shared in the bell tower, and he reminded her about the battle inside him that pitted good against evil. Mick said that was the heart of what was going on, but just then Barbara charged in and ordered Alison out. She said there was a lawyer outside, and Alison was to get out immediately. Mick looked at Barbara, and then he backed down and asked Alison to leave.
Emily returned home and told Paul that she had warned Alison about Mick. Emily could not figure out why Mick had thought they would believe that he was Stenbeck. Paul said it was over, but Emily still had questions. Paul put the strands of Mick's hair into a baggie and said that he would take it to the lab for DNA tests. Emily got sad that they had lost their only chance to have their own baby, and she began to cry. Paul said they had won, however, because they still had each other.
At the farm, Liberty thanked Jack for helping her through her medical crisis, but he explained that was what family did. Liberty was exhausted and went upstairs to go back to bed, as Jack took a call from Carly. She said that Parker's principal had called and wanted to see both of them right away, so Jack grabbed his coat and ran out.
As soon as Jack was gone, Parker sneaked into the house and went upstairs to keep Liberty company. He said he had tried to concentrate in school, but he could not stop thinking of her. Parker asked how the chemo session had gone, and Liberty said it was rough. She admitted that she was really tired, and the smell of the flowers that Natalie had sent was making her sick. Parker moved the flowers and told Liberty that she looked beautiful anyway, but then she always did to him.
Parker assured Liberty that she was not going to die, even though the girl could still not understand how "pumping poison into someone's body could cure anything." Parker said that he had read that "visualization" could help, but Liberty had begun to cry. Parker explained that she needed to imagine the drugs as a force that would move like spaceships through her system and obliterate the cancer cells. Liberty admitted that she had never been so frightened.
Jack and Carly waited to see Parker's school principal, and they talked about Liberty. Jack finally said that it was killing him to exchange small talk with Carly, but just then the principal appeared to escort them to his office. Neither Jack nor Carly had any idea that Parker had been showing up for morning classes, but he was gone by early afternoon. Jack took offense at the principal's not-so-veiled reference to the possibility of Carly's drinking again as "turmoil in the house."
Jack told the principal that Carly had been sober for months, and if the principal had done his homework, he would have known that Parker was upset because Liberty had leukemia and was fighting for her life. Jack chided the man to "do the math" next time, and he stood up and declared that he and Carly were done. They went to the farm where they spotted Parker's bike outside. Jack and Carly walked upstairs and opened Liberty's door to find both the teens asleep on Liberty's bed. They decided that chewing Paker out for missing school could wait.
Jack was still riled about the principal's allusion to Carly's alcoholism, and Carly admitted that she had fallen off the wagon recently for a brief moment. She told Jack that she had ordered a six-pack of beer and a pizza on the night she expected him to return to living at her house, but that had not happened because Janet had broken the news to Jack about Liberty's illness. Carly had taken the beer out to the lake, but again she had drunk only one sip and dumped the rest and gone to another AA meeting.
Parker joined them downstairs, and he apologized for cutting classes. Jack said that they were proud of him for being so caring about Liberty, and Carly called her son "amazing." Jack asked Parker to let them know when he felt he had to leave school and be with Liberty, and they would notify the teachers. Parker said that Liberty was very tired and scared, and he was worried that the doctors could not save her. His parents talked about having faith, and Parker admitted that he couldn't imagine life without Liberty. Carly hugged him, and Parker went back upstairs.
Carly complimented Jack by saying that Parker was growing up just like Jack; he was brave, strong, and loving. Jack leaned over and kissed Carly, who struggled but finally pulled away. She said that they could not do that, especially there, and she warned Jack never to touch her like that again. Carly grabbed her coat and took off.
Upstairs, Parker lay next to Liberty again, and she awakened. She smiled at him and reminded him that she was going to get worse before she got better. Parker said he was in for the long haul, and besides, he had seen her throw up before. He offered to hold her hair back while she "hurled," and that made Liberty smile. She said she probably wouldn't have hair by then, so Parker said he would hold her by the ears.
Luke stopped by the police station and explained to an officer that his father, Damian Grimaldi, had disappeared mysteriously. The policeman said that finding Damian would be their top priority, but he had no news for Luke about his Aunt Meg.
Lily arrived home with groceries, and she was surprised to find Meg hiding in the house. Lily made a break for the door, but Meg beat her to it and prevented her from leaving. Meg said that she had been hiding so that she would not have to return to Deerbrook, and she ranted about Damian, but Lily said that no one knew where Damian was. Meg called Damian evil and declared that he had conned both of them into believing his lies. Lily was angry that Meg had hurt her with broken glass, and she asked why, "in God's name," Meg thought that Lily would help her.
Meg cried out that she had threatened Lily because Damian had set her up. Then Meg realized that Damian had poisoned his own wedding cake in order to "seal the deal" on Meg as a suspect. Lily did not know what to believe, but suddenly the women heard police sirens in the distance. When Meg realized the sirens were getting closer, she cried, "What did you do, Lily?" Lily admitted that she had triggered a silent alarm because she was frightened. Lily then wanted to know if Meg had done something to Damian, but Meg was frantic. Meg started rambling about not seeing Eliza for days at a time, but she couldn't believe that Lily had summoned the cops. She yelled at Lily to "go to hell" as she ran out the door.
Holden and Molly sat in Java and tried to figure out where Meg might have gone. Molly said that Holden had the best chance of determining that, and Luke walked in and joined them. Holden asked if Luke was all right, and Luke said that he needed to tell Holden that he had gone to the police about Damian's being missing. Holden was not pleased, and he said that Damian was gone because he was only concerned about saving his own skin. Luke was worried that Damian had not left town, or even worse, that Meg had found him before he had a chance to leave.
Holden attempted to calm the boy down, but Luke was insistent that something about Damian's disappearance made no sense. Luke was determined to find out exactly what had happened. Holden was worried that with the police involved, it would be much more difficult to find Meg. Molly got a text message from the television station and said she had an assignment, so she ran out. Holden continued by telling Luke that he was much more worried about finding his sister than Damian Grimaldi. Holden felt they had all earned the right not to have to think about Damian anymore.
Luke admitted that he knew Damian had done some inexcusable acts, but then he referred to him as his "father," and Holden went ballistic and shouted, "I'm your father!" Then he apologized to Luke, and the boy said that Holden had raised him and would always be his "dad." Holden was positive that Damian had left Oakdale, but Luke would not let it go. He needed Damian to tell him face-to-face why he had hurt the family. Holden suggested that he search for Meg, and Luke could concentrate on Noah, and Luke agreed.
The two drove home and were shocked to see police cars in their driveway. Lily explained that Meg had shown up and asked for Lily's help, but Lily had managed to press the silent alarm button. Holden was angry at his ex-wife, and Luke took a call that summoned him back to the shipping company. Lily and Holden continued to argue about what might have happened to Damian. He ranted at her to back off so that he could find Meg. When Holden insisted that his sister had done nothing to Damian, Lily demanded to know what Holden knew that she didn't.
Meg ran from Lily's house through the trees, to avoid the police. She reached a street, and a car pulled up. The driver was Molly, who shouted at Meg to get in. Meg did so, and Molly took off and drove quite a distance away. Finally she pulled over and told Meg that she had figured out what was going on because of an alert from work, but she promised that she had mentioned nothing to Holden. Meg said that she had been living in the boiler room of the Lakeview, and had been dodging maids and valets. She begged Molly to drive her out of state.
Meg almost broke down when she thought about not seeing Eliza for many days, and she asked Molly not to tell Holden that she had seen Meg. Molly said she could not do that to Holden, and that angered Meg, who jumped out of the car. Molly followed Meg, and finally got her to stop. She tried to persuade Meg not to run, and she said she knew the family would take care of Meg, just as they were taking care of Liberty. Meg did not know that anything was wrong with Liberty, so she was shocked to hear that the teen had leukemia. Molly asked Meg what would happen if Meg had the correct bone marrow to help Liberty, and Meg realized that Molly believed her about Sharkey, the orderly, and Damian's lies.
Molly said that they had also caught Grady in his lies, and Meg was stunned that her family knew the truth. Meg questioned why Lily had called the cops, and Molly replied, "Because she's Lily." The two of them got back into Molly's car, and Meg finally admitted that she needed help to recover. Molly reassured her that Meg would get good treatment at Deerbrook, so Meg agreed to go back there. First, however, she asked Molly to drive her to Memorial so that she could get her bone marrow tested for Liberty.
Luke met with the first mate of the Grimaldi freighter that had left for Malta the week before. The mate said that just before the ship had arrived at Malta, he had seen a beaten and bloodied man on the deck below, but by the time he had gotten down there, the man was gone. The first mate assumed that the body had washed overboard.
At Katie's house, Dr. Reid Oliver took a call from an associate in Dallas who informed him that a longtime patient had died. That news appeared to bother Katie more than the doctor. Reid said that he had to go to Memorial, and as he was leaving, Henry arrived. Oliver made a few brusque comments to Henry, before he walked out the door. Henry declared to Katie that the man gave "rude and insensitive a bad name." Katie said she couldn't visit because she was taking Jacob to the hospital, and that infuriated Henry. He assumed she was having lunch or was doing something that involved Oliver, but Katie said that was not so.
At the Grimaldi shipping offices, Luke continued talking with the first mate of the freighter, and he asked if the injured person the man had seen on the deck could have been Damian. The first mate said that he had no clue as to the man's identity, nor could he say if the man was even alive. Luke thanked him and went to Memorial, because he knew that Noah had an appointment with Dr. Oliver. Luke poked his head into an exam room, and unfortunately Dr. Oliver saw him. The doctor scolded Luke for still living in the same house as Noah, even though Luke had explained that they were in separate rooms on different floors.
Luke reminded Oliver that the good doctor held all the cards and that Luke had no choice but to go along with what Dr. Oliver wanted. He said he needed Noah's advice about Damian's disappearance and some business decisions he had to make, but that cut no slack with Oliver. Luke turned to go and remarked that the only thing that Dr. Oliver had probably ever lost was a fee.
Maddie took Noah to Java, and she told him that just because Dr. Oliver had forbidden Noah to have any contact with Luke, it did not mean that he couldn't talk about Luke to her. Maddie said Noah should be grateful that he was living at Lily's house, because good apartments at reasonable prices were impossible to find. She read Noah an ad she was posting on the bulletin board at Java because she was looking for a roommate, but Noah said she needn't bother. Noah said he would like to be her roommate. Maddie was hesitant, but she finally agreed. They talked about possibly taking a third roommate, as well, but then Noah realized it was time for his appointment with Dr. Oliver.
Maddie walked Noah to the hospital, but then she returned to Java to post her ad for a third roommate. Henry walked in, and he was still complaining about Reid Oliver, but Maddie said she didn't blame the doctor for being cross because Luke had blackmailed him into flying to Oakdale for Noah's treatment. That was news to Henry, who was encouraged that "Dr. All-Important" might have a skeleton in his closet.
Dr. Oliver examined Noah's eyes again, but he was curt, as usual. Noah asked why the doctor was so short with him, and Oliver said his problem was, as usual, Luke. Noah made an excuse for Luke's wanting to see him, but Oliver said he was neither Noah's friend nor his shrink, and he did not want those lines crossed. He said Noah was on track for the surgery soon.
Katie arrived at the hospital with Jacob, and she ran into Dr. Oliver. She told him that she was going to have the baby tested as a possible blood marrow donor for his half-sister, but she was having second thoughts. The baby was very little, and Katie was torn between what was best for Liberty and protecting Brad's other child. Dr. Oliver lit into Katie by asking her "what the hell" her problem was. He scolded her for even hesitating to save someone's life if Jacob proved to be a match, and he yelled at her to "get over" herself. Katie had tears in her eyes, but, determined to do the right thing, she pushed the baby into an exam room.
Henry spotted Dr. Oliver in the corridor, and he walked up and began taunting the doctor. Oliver called him "Hank," and he declared that Hank had tried to make trouble for him. The doctor said Hank shouldn't have done that, and Henry denied it, but Oliver said that he had received a call from a friend in Dallas who had told him that someone had offered money for information on Oliver. Henry squirmed, but he didn't deny it, and he said that he just wanted to prove to Katie what kind of a guy the doctor was and to "expose" Oliver's flaws.
Dr. Oliver considered that for a moment and then called to a passing orderly to assist him. Pointing to Henry, Reid Oliver told the orderly that he needed help for a patient who had just tested positive for tuberculosis and needed to be quarantined. Henry struggled, but the orderly was strong and hustled a loudly protesting Henry away.
Later, Reid Oliver went home and found Katie crying on the couch. She said that Jacob had done fine with his blood test, so Reid asked why the tears. Katie said she was crying because life was so unfair; not only had she lost Brad, but his daughter, Liberty, had cancer. Katie was worried how she could teach her son to be hopeful and courageous when bad things happened. Reid sat beside Katie and put his arms around her, and Katie asked if that was a hug. Reid told her, "Absolutely not."
Then Reid told her that tears did not help, and they only caused "eyes to swell and skin to blotch." Katie giggled and asked how he would know. Katie asked how to get rid of her grief, but Reid's only advice was to "grow thicker skin." He reached into his medical bag and took out photos of patients he had lost who were especially meaningful to him. They were people he could not save, but also men and women from whom he had learned much.
Katie thought about that, and then she said she was going to do what he was doing. Oliver quipped, "Become a brilliant neurosurgeon?" Katie announced that she was going to use her grief to fight for Brad's daughter. Jacob cried, and Katie said that her son was a fighter, too, as she went to tend him. When Katie left the room, Oliver called the hospital to make sure that the nurses and orderlies were "keeping a close eye" on his special patient.
The "special patient" was Henry, in his hospital gown and boxers, who was pounding on the door and demanding to be let out. Then he complained that his backside was freezing, and he threw a tantrum to get another blanket. "Quarantine, my frozen tundra!" Henry muttered.
Lily and Holden argued at her house about what finding Damian's wallet floating in the water could mean. Lily was still afraid that Meg had done something to him. Molly arrived and gave them both the news that Meg was all right and had turned herself in at Deerbrook. Lily still worried that her ex-sister-in-law had already drugged, poisoned, or stabbed Damian, but Holden said that Damian was gone, Meg was safe, and it was time to move on. Lily again expressed concern about the wallet, but Holden snapped that it was more important for Lily to start worrying about her kids.
Molly said that WOAK was monitoring all police chat, and everyone was looking for Damian. She also declared that tossing his wallet in the water was an easy way for Damian to dodge everyone. Holden left to visit Meg, and Lily told Molly that Damian would not do anything that would devastate Luke. Just then, Luke called his mother, and Lily told him that his Aunt Meg was safe at Deerbrook. Luke asked Lily to go to the shipping office, and he had something important to talk to her about. Lily left immediately.
When Lily arrived at the Grimaldi office, Luke told his mother about the first mate who had flown all the way from Malta to tell him about the badly injured man he had seen on the deck of the freighter in Malta. The two of them concluded that it was possible that Holden had injured Damian before the freighter had left the docks. Luke was upset, but Lily reminded him that his birth father was a liar and a cheat, and Luke should not allow Damian to steal Luke's love and trust of Holden. A confused Luke left to take papers to the company attorney.
Luke later stopped by Java and saw Noah at a table. Noah guessed he was there and called out to him. Noah said he had heard that Luke had stopped by the hospital while looking for Noah, but Dr. Oliver had said that the surgery was still on. Luke sat down, and Noah began asking about Damian. Luke told his boyfriend what the ship's crewman had said, and he admitted that he feared that Damian was dead. Noah spoke about his dad, too, and the two of them held hands. Luke was about to mention something about the night that Damian disappeared, but Maddie joined them.
Maddie was bubbling over with "the best news ever." She said that she had found a great place for them to live, but they had to snatch it immediately. Maddie noticed the look on Luke's face, and she realized that Noah had not yet told Luke that he was moving out. Noah explained that he needed to know if he could live independently without his eyes and without Luke. He was sure the surgery would be successful, but he needed to know that he could make it under even the worst circumstances. Luke realized that was important to Noah, so he said he would support whatever was best for Noah.
Holden visited with Meg at Deerbrook, and his sister apologized for frightening Lily. Holden said he was sorry that he had not believed Meg's stories about Damian's behavior. He looked into Meg's eyes and said, "I took care of everything." He told her that all she had to worry about was getting better. Meg said she had gotten help from Molly, and that surprised Holden. Meg gave Molly credit for believing in her and convincing Meg to turn herself in.
Holden and Molly met for beers at the Lakeview, and he mentioned that Molly had been a big help to Meg. Molly said she was only trying to keep Holden out of it, and he apologized and thanked her. Holden was gloomy that Damian had "dropped a bomb" on Holden's life, and he was fearful that he would never get it back. Molly corrected him by saying that he was afraid that he would not get Lily back, but Holden said that Damian did not "steal" Lily from him because Holden had lost her long before that. He confided that Lily had been looking for something else: work, Dusty Donovan, Damian.
Molly reminded Holden that Damian had manipulated Lily and Meg, but Holden said Lily had not needed much persuasion to marry Damian "ten minutes" after Holden was "dead." He told Molly that he trusted her and owed her a lot. Molly asked Holden to make a pact with her that they would work as a team. Holden agreed and then kissed her.
Molly left for WOAK and found that Kim had left a new assignment for her. Instead of doing Valentine specials and fluff pieces, Molly was to cover the disappearance of Damian Grimaldi. Molly protested that Damian was a "serial skirt chaser with a babe in every port," and he had vanished a couple of times before. Kim had also left a message that she would not take "no" for an answer.
Lily returned home, and Holden surprised her by being in the house helping Natalie with a school project. Lily appeared worried, and Holden guessed that she was concerned about Meg. He told her that he had visited his sister at Deerbrook, and she was very close to her old self again. He also said that he was positive that Meg had nothing to do with Damian's disappearance, and Lily answered, "I'm afraid you might be right." Holden asked if something had happened, and Lily said she had visited Luke at the shipping office. Natalie walked in then, asking for help in making a family tree, so the adults cut off their conversation. Natalie asked if Lily and Holden could be together on the tree even though they were no longer married.
Carly waited at Metro for an early appointment with a potential investor in Monte Carlo, but he failed to show. Teri offered her more coffee, but Carly said that wouldn't solve any of her problems. Teri admired a design sketch, and Carly told her that Liberty had helped on it. Teri thanked Carly for getting tested as a potential bone marrow donor and also for sitting with Liberty during her first chemotherapy session.
Jack found Janet asleep at Emma's kitchen table, so he covered her with a blanket and walked out quietly. Janet awoke almost immediately, however, and she called out for Jack, but she had missed him. Janet went to Memorial to give blood in order to find out if she was a suitable bone marrow donor for Liberty. She found Dusty was ahead of her, and he had already been tested. Dusty asked if Jack was with Janet, but she said no; he had already given a sample. Janet said she had a phobia about needles, so Dusty offered to stay and make sure she didn't pass out.
A nurse entered, so Dusty made goofy faces to distract Janet from looking at the needle. The nurse completed the blood draw, and Janet did fine. Finally Dusty told her that she could open her eyes any time, and he held her hands. Teri walked in, and Janet began explaining how helpful Dusty had been. Dusty left, and Janet thanked Teri for stepping up, as well. Janet was pleased that everybody she loved had shown up, and Teri suddenly asked her sister if she loved Dusty Donovan.
Janet took offense at that and reminded Teri that she was married. Teri said that she wasn't blind, and she could see what was going on between Janet and their "boss." Janet let loose a string of babble about when she and Jack were apart, so she and Dusty -- and then she stopped talking. Teri realized that Janet had slept with Dusty, and Janet admitted that it had only happened once and would never happen again. Teri said she could tell when she walked into the room that Janet had "feelings" for Dusty.
Jack walked by Fashions and saw the Valentine decorations in the window. He realized that he had not gotten Janet anything for the holiday, so he walked in and asked the sales clerk for help. She began to show him lacy nightgowns and lingerie, and Carly walked in. She spotted Jack holding a hanger with a black lacy nightie on it, and they stared at each other. Jack told the clerk that a dress was more his wife's style, so she asked Janet's size and went to look. An embarrassed Jack told Carly that he had "completely spaced" on Valentine's Day, and Carly assured him he needn't feel guilty about buying his wife a present.
Carly went on to say that whatever went on between them before Liberty got sick was a "complete non-issue." Carly began looking through the dresses and found a lovely blue one that she recommended to Jack. Jack hung up the black lacy one but spotted another sexy one. He looked at it a while and then told Carly that she had one just like it when they were in Montana. That memory upset Carly, so Jack left the store, but Carly soon followed. Jack told her she was more than just "an ex-wife," but Carly said she couldn't be more than that. They sat on a bench, and Carly rested her head on Jack's shoulder.
Dusty walked around the corner and approached them. Carly hastily explained that she was helping Jack pick out a Valentine's present for his wife. Jack wished Carly a happy Valentine's Day, and he ran back into Fashions to buy the blue dress. Dusty smiled at Carly, who walked into Al's Diner. Dusty went to the diner, as well, and joined Carly at the counter.
Carly finally suggested that he "cut to the chase" and say what he wanted to say. Before Dusty could begin, however, she said she had only been helping Jack pick out a dress for Janet. She said Jack was her friend, and Dusty told her Janet was his friend. Carly said there was nothing going on between her and Jack.
Jack left Old Town and returned to the farm, and Janet arrived soon afterward. She told him that she had gone to the hospital to get the blood test, but she was still worried that they might have to use a donor. Jack handed her a bag from Fashions and told her it was an early Valentine's present. Janet opened it and was delighted to find the blue dress that Carly had picked out. Janet wanted to know how Jack had chosen such a perfect present by himself. She tried it on, and Jack said she was beautiful.
Jack and Janet kissed, and Jack tried to go further, but Janet said she wasn't ready yet. She said that on Valentine's Day, they would have their special dinner and then...she would see. That was the best Janet could do at the moment, and as she went upstairs to change, she remembered Dusty's holding her hand and helping her through the needle stick at the hospital. Jack also recalled Carly's putting her head on his shoulder.
Paul received the lab report on the DNA sample from Mick Dante, and he was stunned to read that the sample matched that of the one on file for James Stenbeck. Emily snatched the report from Paul's hands and screamed that she could not believe it. Paul thought that James was having one last laugh on him from the grave, and he grabbed his coat and ran out of Fairwinds.
At the police station, Mick told Margo that "Mick" did not really exist; he had "invented" him. Mick claimed to be James Stenbeck, but Margo said that she knew Stenbeck, and Mick was "no James Stenbeck." Mick said Margo could not hold him at the station because she had nothing on him, but Margo said that in spite of having James Stenbeck's arrogance and bullying skills, Mick wasn't going anywhere until she had heard from a judge. Margo left Mick alone, and he suddenly suffered another splitting headache, as James and Mick appeared to be wrestling for control over his mind.
Paul arrived at the station and demanded to know where Mick Dante was. Margo stopped him and said the question was more like "who" was Mick Dante. Paul alleged that Mick had put his wife in a coma, but Margo reminded Paul that he had no proof of that. Paul said that he and Emily had trusted Mick and had even allowed him to move into their home.
Margo granted Paul five minutes with Dante, but she sent an officer in with him. Mick asked what had taken Paul so long to get there, and he called Paul "son." That enraged Paul, and Mick deduced that Paul had gotten the DNA results. Paul accused him of falsifying the results, but Mick said that was not possible since Paul had picked the lab, and Mick was confined to jail.
Mick declared that Paul had the proof that Mick was his father, but Paul screamed that he was looking at the greatest con man of all con men. Paul said he had a wonderful life that was real. Then, out of the blue, Paul said that another thing that was real was Alison Stewart's imminent wedding to Casey Hughes. Mick looked startled and asked why Paul had brought that up, so Paul said that Mick had gone after Alison first and had used her to get to him and Emily. Paul warned Mick not to screw up that wedding, or else Paul would break him. Mick got panicky, and his nose began to gush blood. Paul called Mick "a little freak," as Mick collapsed on the floor.
In the break room at Memorial, Casey told Alison that he was glad she was wearing her engagement ring again. He questioned her pacing the house at night, but Alison chalked it up to bridal nerves. Emily walked in and asked for a minute alone with Alison, so Casey excused himself. Alison noticed how pale her sister was, as Emily handed her the DNA conclusions. Alison read the report aloud, and then she screamed, "Oh, my God!" when she realized that Mick's sample matched that of James Stenbeck's. Casey ran back in, but Alison told him that it was just a silly "bride thing." Casey was uncertain, but he left.
Alison turned to Emily and gasped that her sister couldn't possibly believe that Mick Dante was really James Stenbeck. Emily said that Mick, whoever he was, had played them all, and it was not good. Alison read the report again, and she declared that it was simply not true. Emily told her not to feel guilty but to concentrate on her wedding the next day. Alison went back out on the floor to get back to work, and the ambulance arrived with Mick on a gurney.
Paul ran in with the gurney and the paramedics, and he explained to Alison that Mick had suffered a massive nosebleed and then passed out. Mick heard Alison's voice, and he briefly opened his eyes. The orderlies transferred him to a bed, and Alison began cleaning off the blood. Paul said that perhaps Mick would do everyone a favor and bleed to death, so Alison threw him out of the room. She said she had a "patient in crisis" to tend to, and she kept calling Mick's name.
Mick opened his eyes and asked what had happened. Alison said that she finally believed that the two of them were connected, as Mick had suggested. The one thing she was positive of, however, was that Mick was not James Stenbeck. She believed that something inside was destroying him, and she urged him to fight it. Mick asked to speak to the police officer outside, so Alison asked the officer to step into the room. When the cop walked in, Mick jumped him from behind the door and squeezed his throat until the cop passed out. Mick stretched out his hand to Alison and asked her to go with him.
Casey carried a box of gifts that the nurses had given Alison to his home. Margo was at home, although she was on call for the station. She asked Casey if Alison had mentioned Mick Dante lately, but before Casey could answer, Margo also asked how much Casey knew about Mick. Casey didn't understand why his mom was asking, so Margo said that Mick had been arrested for assault and fraud. Margo also told him that Mick was claiming to be James Stenbeck, and Casey laughed and said, "So he's nuts, then."
Margo said that Mick had a DNA report to prove it, but Casey chuckled and said that James was "old, not to mention dead," but Margo asked if he knew anything about Alison and Mick together. Casey said only that Alison had introduced Mick to Paul and Emily, who had subsequently invested in Mick's research. Casey was positive that Alison didn't know anything about Mick's claim to be Stenbeck. Margo said that Mick was locked in on Paul and Emily, but she wanted to figure out where Alison fit.
Casey said he knew his fiancée, and he accused his mother of "taking pot shots" at Alison and her family. Margo denied that, but she believed that her son should "seriously consider" postponing his wedding. Casey got angry and shouted that Mick was no concern of his or Alison's. He declared that he and his bride were getting married on schedule, the next day, as planned.
Paul went home to Fairwinds, and Emily immediately saw blood on his clothes. Paul explained about Mick's nosebleed, but he was sure it was all part of the scam. Paul told Emily the sad part was that Mick drew out the self-loathing and humiliation that James did, so it was as if his father was still there. Paul said it was as if James Stenbeck was "sticking his hand out of the grave" all over again.
Emily made Paul stop talking, and she kissed him. Eliza began to fuss, so Emily went to get her. Paul called the hospital to check on the status of their new patient, and he shrieked when he learned that Dante had escaped. Paul took a pistol from the safe in the living room and left Fairwinds. Emily returned to an empty living room.
Mick took Alison to the bell tower of the church, and she chewed him out for assaulting the cop. She could not understand why Mick wanted people to believe that he was James Stenbeck. She also asked why he was doing strange things, and Mick answered, "Because James wants me to." Ali said that James was dead, but Mick said he had fixed it so that Mick could finish what James couldn't. He said that James wanted him to hurt all the people he was involved with, and Mick couldn't stop James from making him do it. Only one person could stop it, Mick said, and that was Alison.
At home, Casey took out a video camera and began to film himself discussing his upcoming wedding to Alison. Bob appeared at the door, and Casey asked him to say something on tape about the wedding. Bob looked into the camera and said that he thought Alison and Casey made a perfect couple and would have a long and happy life together. When Casey asked Bob if he had been nervous the day he married Kim, Bob confirmed that he had indeed been nervous.
Casey pointed out what a big commitment marriage was, with the intention of spending your life with one person and starting a family with them. Bob corrected Casey by saying he had never been nervous about that part, only about the wedding itself. Bob asked if Casey was having doubts, and Casey said, "Absolutely." Casey turned off the camera and told his great-grandfather that although he had no doubts about his love for Alison, he did doubt his own ability to be the kind of man Alison deserved. Bob replied that the fact that Casey was concerned about that was a good sign.
At All Angels Church, Mick informed Alison that she was the only person who could stop him from hurting the people she cared about. He explained that he didn't want to hurt Paul and Emily, but James wanted him to, and even though James was dead, he felt that James was in his head. Mick said that whenever he tried to resist those thoughts, he developed headaches and nosebleeds. According to Mick, whenever James took over in Mick's mind, it was as though Mick actually was James.
Alison pointed out that James was dead, and therefore, he couldn't hurt Mick any more. Mick said James had never hurt him, that James had loved him, and he had loved James. Mick explained that James had taken him in and given him a home; he said James had treated him like a son, and in return, James had asked Mick to go to Oakdale to destroy Paul and everyone Paul cared about, because Paul had betrayed James. Alison tried to tell Mick that it was the other way around, that James had consistently tried to destroy Paul, and she said that James couldn't force Mick to do anything. Mick replied that he wasn't being forced, because he felt that he owed it to James to carry out his plans.
Alison said that if that were the case, and if it were true that Alison was the only person who could stop Mick, then that was what she would do. Mick, relieved, told Alison that it must have been destiny for them to meet, because he'd known from the minute he met Alison that she would help him. Alison said she regretted having helped him, because it had made her and her sister's lives miserable.
Alison asked Mick to explain how he had become involved with James. Mick told her that he'd been a runaway, but no one had ever tried to find him. He had lived on the streets, and was stealing and foraging for food. One day, Mick had sought shelter in a cabin in the woods during a storm, only to find that James was already using the cabin as a hideaway. According to Mick, he and James hid out together in the cabin, and James treated Mick better than anyone else ever had, and eventually even thought of Mick as his son and told Mick that Mick respected him more than his real son, Paul, ever had. Mick said that he loved James, and James trusted him, to the point that if James needed anything done, all he had to do was tell Mick.
Eventually, Mick started wondering just how much he really owed James, based on the types of things James asked him to do. Mick said that James began to realize that Mick's heart wasn't in it as much as it had been, so James began having conversations with Mick that Mick couldn't remember afterward. Mick told Alison that James had a device that he would shine into Mick's eyes, and every time James used it, Mick would realize later that he was having thoughts that didn't seem to be his own. Mick told Alison that he hadn't fought it until he had met Alison, and that Alison made him want to be himself again.
Alison told Mick he needed professional help to undo the psychological programming that James had done, but Mick said he didn't want to go to prison. Alison said that because Casey's mother was the chief of detectives, Margo could help keep Mick out of prison and get him the help he needed. Mick again said he couldn't go to prison, because then he would lose Alison. Alison told Mick that she wasn't his to lose, because she wanted to be with Casey. Mick told Alison that she was lying to herself, but she insisted she wasn't.
Paul went to see his mother and demanded that she tell him where Mick was. Barbara said she didn't know, and then she noticed that Paul was holding a gun. Barbara told Paul that she couldn't let him shoot his father, but Paul yelled that Mick wasn't his father, that he was just somebody whom James had managed to brainwash. Barbara asked why Paul would want to shoot Mick, if that were the case, and Paul said it was the only way to stop him. Paul told Barbara that he would get rid of Mick for good.
When Barbara told Paul she couldn't help him, he pointed the gun at her. She asked if he would really shoot her, and Paul asked whether Barbara remembered what Mick had done to Emily. He told his mother that if she took Mick's side against his, it would be the end of Paul's relationship with Barbara. Barbara reluctantly told Paul that Mick liked to go to the bell tower at All Angel's Church. Paul said that Barbara had better not be lying, and he left.
Paul went to the church and began yelling for Mick to reveal himself. Alison and Mick heard Paul yelling, and Alison went downstairs to talk to him. She immediately noticed the gun Paul was carrying and asked him what he was doing with it, especially in a church. Paul told Alison not to worry about that and demanded to know if Mick was up in the bell tower. Alison lied and said that he wasn't there anymore. Alison told Paul that she had followed Mick to the church after his escape from the hospital. She said she had tried to talk Mick into turning himself in, but he was afraid of going to prison, so he had told Alison he was leaving town.
Paul asked if Alison was okay, and she said she was a little spooked but otherwise fine. Paul told her to call her mom and her sister, because they were probably worried about her, and Alison said she would. He asked if Alison wanted him to give her a ride, but she said she had her car and needed to go to Casey's house, so Paul left.
Mick thanked Alison for lying for him. Alison said she didn't know what to do, because she couldn't hide Mick from Paul and she couldn't just walk away from Mick. Mick told Alison to leave town with him, because if he weren't in Oakdale, he would be free from the programming, since everyone James wanted him to hurt was in Oakdale. Alison reminded Mick that she was getting married the next day, but Mick said that Alison didn't really want to marry Casey. When Alison told him she loved Casey, Mick asked, "Then why did you sleep with me?" Alison replied that she'd been confused, but Mick told her he thought she'd been looking for a way out of her wedding.
Alison told Mick that she couldn't listen to him anymore and that she never wanted to see him again. Mick grabbed her and kissed her. Alison broke away and ran from the church.
At the hospital, an orderly was holding Henry in a room, on Dr. Oliver's orders. Henry told the orderly that he didn't actually have tuberculosis and that the orderly should let him go, but the orderly ignored him. The phone in the room rang, and when the orderly answered it, he said it was for Henry. Henry picked up the phone and was surprised to hear Margo's voice. He told her he was being held against his will at the hospital, but when Margo asked if Mick Dante was holding Henry, Henry was surprised. Margo told Henry that Mick was claiming to be James Stenbeck and that he might be dangerous. Henry asked if Barbara knew about the situation, and he promised not to go anywhere near Mick. Henry began pleading with Margo again to help him get out of the hospital, but she hung up on him.
Henry began coughing and approached the orderly. He reached up and took the orderly's mask off and coughed right in the orderly's face, which led the orderly to run out of the room in fear of catching tuberculosis. Henry took off and went straight to Barbara's suite at the Lakeview, still wearing just a hospital gown. Barbara let him in but asked why he had been in the hospital. When Henry said he'd been put in quarantine for tuberculosis, Barbara covered her mouth and told Henry to leave immediately. Henry explained what had actually happened and then told Barbara about Mick's claims to be James Stenbeck.
Barbara told Henry she already knew about that, and that she believed that Mick was indeed James. Henry was shocked that Barbara would believe any such thing, given how young Mick was and the fact that James was dead. Barbara explained that Mick had been using a youth serum to make himself younger. She told Henry that James had returned to try to make things up to her and to Paul and Henry. Henry realized that Barbara had been letting Mick treat her because she believed that Mick's treatments would make her younger. Barbara said that was true, and she told Henry that she'd done it for herself and for him.
Henry asked what Barbara meant, and she reminded him that when she and Henry had first become involved, they had been using each other. Barbara said that for her part, it had been exactly what she'd needed. She explained that even though she had beaten cancer, she had felt very vulnerable and old. Barbara said that despite Henry's faults, he was very alive, and he had made her feel that way, too. But Barbara had begun to see both Vienna and Katie as competition for Henry's attention, although Henry protested that he had never meant for Barbara to feel that way.
Henry realized that Mick had then appeared with his fountain of youth treatments, and Barbara agreed that she had believed that Mick could not only make her feel younger but could actually make her younger. Henry told Barbara that Mick was a good con man who was only after Barbara's money. He told Barbara that she didn't need to be younger, because she was "a very attractive, exciting woman who's also sexy as hell."
Henry told Barbara he had to change clothes, and as he was about to leave, Barbara asked whether he was going to Alison and Casey's wedding the next day. Henry said he was, and Barbara asked if he'd like to accompany her. Henry told her that he would love to, except he had already agreed to go with Katie. Barbara told Henry that she would see him at the wedding if they still let her attend. Henry said the only reason they would have to not let Barbara be at the wedding would be if they were concerned that she would outshine the bride.
Hoping to find Emily and Paul, Susan went to Fairwinds. Emily told Susan that Paul had gone to buy a wedding gift for Alison. Susan let Emily know that Mick Dante had escaped from the hospital, and she told Emily that she wanted to be sure Emily and Alison were safe. Emily asked why Susan was worried about Alison, and Susan realized that Emily didn't know that Alison and Mick had slept together. When Susan passed that information along, Emily demanded to know how her mother could know such a thing. Susan told Emily that Alison herself had admitted it, although Alison had been at a loss to explain why she had done it.
Emily said that things were worse than Susan knew, because Mick was claiming that he was James Stenbeck. Susan pointed out that James was both dead and much older than Mick, but Emily said Mick claimed that the drugs he'd been giving Emily and Barbara had also reversed his aging process and saved his life. Susan was stunned that Barbara believed such a thing, and she asked whether Emily believed it. Emily said she thought Mick was insane, but she had seen Paul take some hair from Mick's head and give it to an independent lab for analysis, and she had later seen the lab report that indicated the DNA from the hair was almost an exact match for James's DNA. Emily said regardless of the DNA test results, Mick was a dangerous man, and they needed to find Alison right away.
Emily and Susan went to the Hughes's house, where they told Bob and Casey that they were looking for Alison. Casey said he had thought Alison was with Emily. Emily and Susan said that Alison was probably at the mall doing some last-minute shopping. Bob then suggested that while they were waiting for Alison, Casey could tape Emily and Susan for the wedding video. Emily and Susan looked doubtful but agreed to tape something together. When Casey turned on the camera, Emily said, "Hi, Ali. We love you so much, and we want you to be safe and happy for the rest of your life."
Later, Emily went back to Fairwinds. When Paul returned home, Emily saw his gun and asked what he was doing with it. Paul told Emily about finding Alison at the church and that Alison had said Mick had left town. Emily was glad to hear that, but Paul said he planned to track him down and get rid of him. Emily asked if Paul intended to spend the rest of his life in jail, but Paul said he couldn't be convicted of killing someone who was already dead, and if Mick's DNA proved that Mick was James Stenbeck, then that's what Paul would be doing. Emily blocked Paul's attempt to leave and told him that if he left, she wouldn't be there when he returned.
Emily reminded Paul that he had worked very hard to not be like his father, but he was reacting exactly the way his father would want him to react. Paul said that he didn't have a choice, but Emily said he always had a choice. Emily told Paul that they could stand together united and be strong and reject what James wanted Paul to do. She asked Paul to believe in her and in their marriage and to give her the gun. He did, and she put it back in the safe.
Alison arrived at the Hughes's house, and Casey asked her where she'd been and why she hadn't answered his calls. She told him she'd been shopping and that her phone battery had died. Casey replied that once they were married, Alison wouldn't be able to ignore his calls. Alison said that went both ways, so Casey joked about getting phones that would keep them in constant touch. They kissed, and Mick appeared outside on the patio.
As Mick watched Casey and Alison, his nose began to bleed. Mick angrily turned and knocked over a patio chair before running away. Casey and Alison heard the noise outside, but when they went to investigate, they didn't see anyone. Alison told Casey she should leave and said that she couldn't wait for their wedding the next day.
Mick returned to the bell tower, where he had an argument with himself as James. "James" told Mick that Paul, Henry, and Barbara had rejoiced at James's death and that they deserved what Mick was going to do to them. Mick told "James" that he couldn't ruin Alison's wedding to Casey, but "James" told Mick that Alison didn't care about Mick and was just like the rest of them.
"James" said that Mick needed to take care of all of them while they were all together at the wedding and make them suffer. Mick said he didn't want to hurt them, because they'd been good to him, but "James" said he was the only person who'd been good to Mick. "James" told Mick that he was James Stenbeck; Mick kept insisting that he was Mick Dante, but eventually, when "James" asked again, "Who are you?" Mick responded, "I'm James Stenbeck."