At Forrester, Eric asked why it had been so important to Rick that Eric would sign the papers Rick had drawn up that would give Rick irrevocable control of Forrester. Eric noted that his signature would negate any leverage he had with his own company and would give Rick the final say about everything including company leadership. Rick reminded Eric that he had changed and was ready to lead Forrester. "I want to run this company into future with Caroline," Rick declared. Eric looked thoughtful.
Later, Eric had left and Rick was alone. Maya entered, and she kissed Rick, but Rick had been distant. Maya asked about the change in his demeanor. Rick admitted that his father had not signed the papers. "You can't be coming in here kissing me like that," he advised. Rick added that Caroline or anyone else from Forrester could have seen her.
Maya teased that she would have made an excuse that she had tried to seduce him and he had resisted. Rick was not amused. "I have to play this out that I am loyal to my wife," he explained. Rick had a plan. Rick added that he had planned to call a meeting and put on a show. Later Maya said that she didn't like his plan, and she didn't know if she could do what Rick had wanted. She quizzed him about how it would take before he would have complete control. Rick encouraged her to play along.
Rick later met with Caroline, Eric, and Carter to discuss the recent sales numbers and forecasts. Everyone crowed that everything had been good. Rick added that he had one more order of business. He picked up the phone and asked to have someone sent in.
Maya entered, and Caroline wondered why Maya had been invited to the meeting. Rick thanked Maya for her time at Forrester and told her that she would receive an excellent severance package, but she had to leave. "Caroline is the secret to the future of Forrester," he announced.
"Are you firing me?" Maya asked indignantly. Rick answered that he could no longer have her working for Forrester after he callous remarks about Caroline. Caroline tearfully smiled. "What am I supposed to do?" Maya asked with her voice breaking. Maya accused Caroline of forcing Rick to fire Maya, but Rick advised Maya that he had never discussed it with Caroline, and Caroline agreed. Maya angrily noted that she had given her life to Forrester and Rick had dumped her. "Now you're firing me?"
Rick said that he was back with his wife. "I love her," Rick said. Maya promised to stay away from both Rick and Caroline, but Rick said it would never work. Eric stepped in and disagreed with Rick. "Maya does not lose her job over this," Eric insisted. Eric ended the meeting. Caroline thanked Rick and told him that she had been grateful for his loyalty to her. They embraced. "You deserve it -- every bit of it," Rick said. Eric smiled, and Rick smiled back.
At Katie's, she and Ridge discussed what had been going on at Forrester. Katie asked about what Ridge had been working on. Ridge proudly showed Katie some of his most recent designs. Katie praised the designs and asked if he had done them alone or with Caroline. Ridge shared that he and Caroline had been collaborating on them. Ridge added that his dad and Rick had insisted on the collaboration.
Katie had quizzed Ridge about how he'd felt about the collaboration and what he wanted for Caroline. Ridge shared that he wanted Caroline to do the best work she was capable of doing. Ridge noted that Katie was looking for more information. "What's going on?" Ridge asked.
Katie mentioned that the red ribbon around her finger -- the substitute for an engagement ring -- had fallen apart. Ridge apologized. Katie grew serious. She said that she'd loved the way Ridge had treated her son, but she had to worry about his future and what was right for her. She acknowledged that Rick and his father wanted Ridge to work with Caroline and that Ridge and Caroline had been phenomenal together as a design team. Ridge interrupted and wondered where Katie was headed with the conversation.
Katie noted that a light went on inside of Ridge whenever he spoke about designing with Caroline. "And it's not because of me," Katie admitted. Ridge said that he would always be grateful to Caroline. "She helped me draw again," Ridge said.
"It's more than just gratitude, isn't it? Do you love her?" Katie asked. Ridge stopped Katie, and grabbed her hand. Katie insisted she had to tell him more. She understood that he and Caroline had something special. She would never tell him to stop working with Caroline. "I want more than anything for you to be happy," she said. But she added that she'd planned to remove the red ribbon around her finger.
"Please don't do that," Ridge said. Katie told him that it was okay because she'd known that the moment was coming to end their relationship. Ridge grabbed her hand. Katie told him that she would never regret loving him or being loved by him. "I really needed to be loved my someone," she said.
Katie tearfully pulled off the red string around her finger. "See that wasn't so hard," she said. Ridge looked sad.
"I'm sorry," Ridge said. He'd tried to explain that what he'd had with Caroline had been business, but Katie disagreed. She said that she wished she had been the one to inspire him, but it wasn't meant to be. She flashed back to romantic moments that she and Ridge had shared. She promised she would never forget them.
"Neither will I," Ridge said. They kissed, and Ridge grabbed his coat and left. He looked back at Katie and paused on the front porch outside her house. Inside, Katie read a poem from a book: "The fountain mingles with the river and the river with the ocean." she said. She placed the red ribbon from her finger inside the book of poetry, and she smiled after she'd closed the book. Tears streamed own her cheeks
At Spencer, Justin told Bill about the latest union negotiations, but Bill seemed miles away. Justin assumed Bill had been thinking about Brooke, but Bill said he had missed Katie. He worried that she had cut him out of her life. Justin noted that Bill wanted her back.
Bill agreed, but he said he had missed out and it was too late because Katie was about to become engaged to Ridge. Justin said it was never too late. Bill lamented that he had waited too long and chased a dream when his dream had been right in front of him all along. Bill grabbed a photo of Katie. He flashed back to his wedding with Katie and to the sonogram when she had been pregnant and to more recent times with Katie holding Will.