Rick explained to Steffy that he made the decision to steal Eric's designs for their future. Steffy was unsure how stealing her grandfather's designs was supposed to be for the two of them. Rick tried to explain his convoluted thought process to her. Rick said when he realized Ridge would never forgive him and accept his relationship with Steffy, he opted to take matters into his own hands. Steffy asked if Rick thought the way to get the family to accept their relationship was to stab both of their dads in the back. Rick explained he had no choice; he knew the Forresters could not accept them, so he found a way they could venture out on their own. Steffy asked if he truly thought working for the competition against their family was a real solution.
Rick laid out his full blueprint for the future. He said he had been miserable at Forrester. Between Stephanie threatening him, and Ridge making him uncomfortable every day, it would make perfect sense if he started working at Jackie M. Then he could bring Steffy on and they could build up the company together. Steffy tried using the voice of reason and explained that as soon as Rick went to work for Jackie M, the family would put two and two together and discover Rick was the one who stole their designs. She said he had not helped them; he had destroyed them.
Steffy said if the love they shared was the sort of love that hurt their family and stole from their family, it was a sick love that didn't deserve to see the light of day. Steffy urged Rick to confess what he had done. She pointed out that the family would launch a big and costly investigation, and eventually they would discover that Rick was behind it. She asked him to come clean immediately.
Rick asked Steffy if it would make a difference to their future if he confessed. Steffy said there was no 'them' anymore. Rick said he would go and confess to his father, and hoped Steffy would give him another chance after the dust had settled. Rick left the room and Steffy cried as she looked at Rick's photo. She was unable to handle the fact that he sold out their family business.
Jackie gushed with delight about the fashion show and proclaimed that Jackie M was the hit of the season. Nick wasn't as thrilled and reminded her there would be fallout. Jackie shrugged it off and said the Forresters would not have enough evidence to sue them. Nick said the fallout he was thinking of wasn't legal, but personal. This situation would affect his fiancée, Katie. Jackie said Katie would get over it. After all, Nick had secured a financial future for Katie and Jack. The press arrived and Clark posed for the cameras and claimed his designs were the salvation of Jackie M. Nick looked as if he wanted to vomit. He tried to call Katie, but she did not pick up.
Katie was devastated and expressed to Brooke that she felt as if her fiancé was a stranger. Katie didn't think Nick was the sort of man who would put her in that sort of position. She played uneasily with her engagement ring as though she was deciding whether or not to throw it across the room. Katie said she didn't think she could go home.
Eric and Ridge worried about the future of Forrester Creations since they would not have a new line to debut. The two men vowed to find out who betrayed them and stole their designs and to send the culprit to jail. Ridge said they would come back from this. Eric said they had come back in the past and hoped it would happen again. Eric thanked Ridge for being beside him at such a difficult time.
Ridge went to Brooke and asked if she had convinced Nick to pull the line. She said Nick refused. Ridge approached Katie to see if she would talk to Nick, and she said nothing. Ridge deduced that Katie had been in the dark, too.
Brooke was worried about her sister and told Ridge that Katie was having a hard time with the situation. Ridge said if Brooke could have seen Eric, it would have broken her heart. Eric had been so proud of his new collection and felt he had something to prove after his heart attack. Ridge relayed the amount of work they had done to get the collection ready and it had all been for nothing. The whole project had to be scrapped. Ridge said Eric wanted to prove he wasn't washed up. Ridge vowed to become Eric's inspiration to create another new collection, and Brooke vowed to be Ridge's inspiration in turn. The two kissed passionately.
Rick walked into Eric's office and Eric expressed great sorrow over what had happened.
He said they had to find out who had leaked their designs. Rick threw himself at Eric's mercy and confessed that he had been the one who emailed Jackie M the entire Forrester line. Eric looked as though he had been stabbed. It was the ultimate betrayal-and by his son's hand. Rick explained that Stephanie, Ridge, Thorne, and Felicia had been mean to him. Eric asked Rick if he was eleven years old. Eric said Rick had been living in Ridge's shadow for a long time and the reason was clear: Rick was no Ridge Forrester.
In Eric's office at Forrester Creations, Rick angrily discussed Eric's response to the discovery that Rick had given the designs to Jackie M Boutiques. Eric had commented out of his anger that "Rick was no Ridge Forrester." Rick pointed out that Eric always favored Ridge, and he never loved his children all the same as he claimed. Eric asked Rick if that were the reason that he betrayed his father.
Meanwhile, Ridge was seething over the theft of his company's designs. Brooke employed her feminine charms and comforted Ridge by seducing him on the couch in his office. When they were finished, Ridge vowed to Brook that he would find out who stole the Forrester designs. Ridge even stated he would hire a private investigator to get the information.
Pam warned Stephanie that there was a spy at Forrester Creations, which was why she was quietly crocheting the bathing suits so no one could watch what she was doing and copy her design.
Back at Eric's office, Rick confessed that he was a huge disappointment to his father. Eric did not agree with Rick's feelings. Rick commented that Eric would never intentionally hurt anyone. Rick recalled he didn't have an ideal childhood and his parents got divorced. He was aware that he wasn't the only child to feel that way and should have received counseling. He questioned what type of son he could if he robbed his own father of his hard work. Rick once again blamed himself for Phoebe's death. Rick concluded that he had to leave, and get away from Forrester Creations.
Later, Eric told Rick that even though he betrayed him and his company, Eric wanted Rick to stay at Forrester Creations so they could work together. Eric promised that it would be their secret, and he would see to it that no one else found out what he had done.
Ridge told Stephanie that he was suspicious of Rick's sudden disappearance around the time the theft of the designs had been revealed. Stephanie stated she also believed that Rick was responsible for the stolen designs. She was certain that Rick had stolen the designs to hurt Ridge rather then Eric.
Mr. Williams from the bank arrived at Jackie M. Boutiques and told Nick and Jackie that one great selling collection would not be enough to pay off their loan. After the bank official had left, Nick assured a very nervous Jackie that things would work out financially due to the boon in business from the stolen designs. He told his mother that his plan was that when the new president joined their company, they would be able to use the president's name to promote sales.
Eric first telephoned Steffy and asked her to meet him at the airport at the Forrester jet without telling anyone where she was going. Eric then telephoned Nick and arranged to meet him at the airport at the Forrester jet to discuss the stolen designs. He asked Nick not to tell anyone where he was going, not even his mother, Jackie. Eric told Rick that he was arranging the meeting to protect Rick and the entire family. Eric agreed that perhaps he had not been the best father, but he wanted to protect Rick and hold their family together. He commented that they were a father and a son, they would work together, and they would never fail again.
On the Forrester private jet, Eric confronted Nick about the stolen designs. He said he didn't need to deny anything because Rick told him the entire story. Eric made it clear to Nick that he would love to prosecute him and Jackie, but he would not. Instead, Eric explained that he wanted to help his son. He told Nick that Nick could keep the designs and profit from the designs under one condition: Rick would remain with Forrester Creations and no one could find out what Rick had done. He asked Nick to make a snap decision about Rick.
Jackie allowed Bridget to sneak in a visit with Jack. Jackie knew how much Bridget adored the baby and still regretted the breakup of Bridget and Nick's marriage. Bridget thanked Jackie for letting her see Jack. Bridget admitted that she was still in pain over the breakup with Nick, but had decided to move on with her life.
Bridget congratulated Jackie on the success of Jackie M's latest collection. Jackie thanked her, but mentioned that she needed a new designer to keep the company moving forward. Jackie said Clarke could only take them so far. Jackie mentioned that Jack preferred Bridget to his babysitter. Bridget appeared fidgety and uncomfortable and said she had to leave. Jackie asked her if she was avoiding Nick. Bridget denied it and reminded Jackie that she had decided to move on. Bridget said she wanted to shake things up a bit, and Jackie said she was a big fan of that concept.
Stephanie was suspicious that Rick was the one who sabotaged their new line and expressed her fears to Ridge. Ridge said that although Rick despised him, he wouldn't be cruel enough to ruin things for his own father, Eric. Stephanie was not convinced, and warned Ridge not to underestimate Rick.
Ridge said it wouldn't make sense for Rick to hurt the company. Stephanie reminded Ridge that Rick rarely made sensible choices and she stuck to her hunch that Rick was the culprit. Stephanie worried about how badly it would hurt Eric if it were his son who stole his designs and betrayed him.
Eric approached Nick and pitched a deal. Eric said Nick could have the entire collection of designs, but he could not have Rick. Eric threatened to expose the fact that Jackie M stole the designs if Nick didn't agree. Nick said they hadn't stolen the designs. He said Rick offered him the designs in exchange for the presidency of Jackie M. Nick asked Rick to weigh in on the matter.
Steffy arrived and Nick was surprised to discover she also knew about the stolen designs. Steffy asked Eric if he would be able to forgive Rick for what he had done. Eric said he didn't understand what motivated Rick, but he thought that he could forgive him. Rick said he had made a huge error in judgment and believed in a dream that would never come true.
Rick apologized profusely to Eric and said he regretted what he had done. Nick reminded Rick that he was ready to ditch his job at Forrester and take over at Jackie M. Rick said he changed his mind and wanted to continue to work with his dad at Forrester. Eric promised Nick the secret would remain with the four of them and they would never mention it to anyone.
Rick pleaded with Steffy to believe that he had only tried to shake things up for the two of them, and that he had acted out of love. She said she believed him.
Bridget saw Rick and Steffy parting ways and asked Steffy if she and Rick were still seeing one another despite multiple warnings. Steffy assured her that they had ended things and that she finally realized Bridget was right. Nothing good could ever come of a relationship between Rick and Steffy.
Steffy said it hurt, and her feelings for Rick just kept coming back in spite of every obstacle they had faced. Bridget said she understood how badly it hurt to love someone you could not be with.
Nick reported back to Jackie and said he had good news and bad news. The good news was that Eric would not press charges against them. The bed news was that they would not get a new president for Jackie M. Jackie pressed Nick to name their secret helper, but Nick refused.
Stephanie and Ridge cornered Eric and asked what he had discovered about the theft of his designs. Eric downplayed the event and said it was water under the bridge. Eric urged them to forget it and move forward. Eric pointed out that the designs has debuted as Jackie M fashions, so to cause a commotion would only serve to offer free publicity to their competition. Eric said he had made the choice; it was over and done with. Stephanie accused Eric of covering for someone. Ridge went a step further and named names - little Ricky. Stephanie asked Eric to look her in the eye and swear that it was not Rick that had sabotaged them. Eric refused to give Stephanie a scapegoat.
Ridge and Stephanie pounced on Rick, but Eric stood firm and told them he would not allow them to blame Rick for what had happened. After Ridge and Stephanie left the room, Rick expressed gratitude for Eric's loyalty. Rick said Eric covered for him when he least deserved it. Eric realized Rick was still punishing himself for the guilt he felt over Phoebe's death. Eric told him he had to let go of the guilt or it would consume him and ruin his life.
Eric's one condition to Rick was the Rick needed to live at peace with Ridge. Eric didn't want his two sons at one another's' throats. Rick said he would comply, but he could not speak for Ridge. Eric vowed he would handle Ridge and bring him around.
After Eric left the room, Stephanie was stalking Rick outside the office. She entered and said she knew Rick was responsible for what had happened at the fashion show as well as for Phoebe's death, and swore she would make him pay.
Eric put on a great act for Ridge and Stephanie as he refused to believe that Rick could have been responsible for stealing the designs. Ridge and Stephanie berated Rick, but Eric warned Stephanie to let it go. Ridge insisted that Rick had to pay. Eric shouted at them both to stop pointing fingers. Eric said that Jackie M might have the entire collection, but Clarke was the head designer at Jackie M, and that meant disaster for the company.
At Jackie M, Jackie and Nick looked at Clarke's new designs, and they were unimpressed. Jackie and Nick sent Clarke on his way as they added that they were hiring a new designer to help him. Jackie said she had a new designer in mind - someone whose collection she had been studying. Jackie left as Katie marched in to joust with Nick.
Katie asked Nick if he could go back in time to receiving the first email with designs in it, if he would do it again. Nick continued his blabbing that he did not steal the designs because they were given to him, but Katie said she wanted to know who sent them. Nick wouldn't tell her, and he said he planned to protect his family no matter what, including her. Oddly, Katie asked him about Bridget. Nick said he would always have feelings for Bridget, but he was in love with and planned to marry Katie. She said she wanted to be his partner. They kissed and embraced.
Bridget popped in at Rick's office, but he refused to talk to about his relationship with Steffy. He said it was over. Bridget said it was all for the best. She added that Rick should have known to stay away from Steffy.
At lunch, Jackie saw Bridget, but she told Bridget she was meeting a designer. Bridget enlightened Jackie that she was the mystery designer Jackie was scheduled to have lunch with. Jackie was delighted and told her former daughter-in-law how inspired her designs were. Bridget gushed that she always wanted to be a designer ever since she was a little girl, but no one ever encouraged her. She said she made outfits for her dolls. She even asked for a sewing machine as a child, and hoped that her family would notice that she was interested in designing. She said her family still ignored her desire to get into fashion and she chose to excel in math and science. Bridget said she had been a very happy doctor.
Jackie said the designs were exactly what she needed to keep Jackie M going. Jackie worried that Eric would not approve of his daughter working for the competition, but Bridget didn't think it would be a problem. She decided to get away from her family because they weren't looking for a designer. Jackie gave her the job, but tempered her enthusiasm with the truth. Jackie realized that Bridget hadn't been at Forrester lately, so she had no idea that someone had sent Eric's designs over to Jackie M. Jackie didn't tell her about the design coup, but she warned that Bridget would have to work with Nick. Bridget said she didn't care. She and Jackie agreed to keep her mystery designer status secret for a while, rather than announce whom she was. Bridget was elated that she could finally fulfill her dream.
Steffy met with Eric because he wanted to discuss what Rick did. Eric begged her not to tell anyone, and Steffy agreed, but she countered that the entire family was already suspicions. She wondered how Eric was able to show such forgiveness and set aside his anger. Eric said he loved his son. He was adamant that no one could ever find out what Rick did. He was especially worried that Ridge would find out. Eric told Steffy that Rick was a good person. Eric insisted that Rick needed help to get through his problems.
Rick delivered papers to Ridge, and Ridge started the barrage of accusations that Rick sabotaged the company. Rick baited Ridge to do something to him if Ridge was so certain. Ridge ranted on about losers and how disgusted he was with Rick. He ordered Rick out of his office. Rick said he was only there because he promised Eric he would try to make peace with Ridge.
Later, Ridge and Stephanie wouldn't let go of the thought that Rick was the guilty party. Ridge ranted about his hatred for Rick. Stephanie couldn't understand why Eric protected Rick. Ridge freaked out and said he couldn't stand Rick. He said he had promised Brooke that he would try to get along with Rick. He swore that if Rick did one more thing to the family, Ridge would take action.
Steffy visited Rick and marveled that Eric was so forgiving that he allowed Rick to stay with the company. Steffy told Rick she, too, forgave him. Rick told Steffy that Ridge knew Rick was the one who stole the designs. Rick said he was caught in a fantasy. He actually thought they had a future together at Jackie M. He admitted he was dumb to do what he did. Steffy said maybe they were both crazy. They were crazy in love. Outside the door, Stephanie saw Rick and Steffy joining hands and about to embrace.
Ridge and Eric busily worked to design another line in time for the upcoming fashion show. Stephanie interrupted their work and tried to light a fire under Ridge and Eric to urge them to dig into Rick's role in the design theft. Ridge said he was too busy and Eric said she should leave it alone. Stephanie told Eric that he was not helping Rick by covering for him and enabling him. Eric said he would not allow Stephanie to bad-mouth his son anymore, and asked her to drop it once and for all.
Ridge and Brooke had a brief romantic moment and kissed passionately. Brooke asked Ridge if Eric had discovered who had stolen his designs. Ridge said he was certain that Eric knew, but was covering it up. Brooke asked why Eric would protect the thief that had stolen his designs and Ridge said because it was her son, Rick. Brooke's jaw dropped in shock that Ridge would make such an accusation. Brooke asked if Ridge had come up with that theory by himself, or if his mother was behind it.
Bridget packed boxes and planned to take a leave of absence from the hospital. She said she wanted to try something different for a while. As she packed her boxes, she thumbed through design sketches she had drawn.
Steffy went to talk to Bridget about her dilemma regarding Rick. Bridget reminded Steffy that Rick had been involved with both her late sister, Phoebe, as well as Steffy's own mother, Taylor. Bridget said it wasn't love. Steffy said she had told herself the same thing, but whenever she was around Rick, something happened to her. Bridget said it was a passing attraction. Steffy said Bridge was wrong; it was much more and Steffy and Rick could have a future if their family would let them.
At the same time, Rick was also pining away for Steffy. He thumbed through photos of her on his iPhone, unable to concentrate on his work. He sent Steffy a text message and said he missed her. Stephanie lured Rick out of his office under false pretenses and went into his office to snoop. Steffy text messaged Rick back and asked him to meet her at the beach house. Stephanie read it and realized Rick was after Steffy-and made a beeline for the door.
Stephanie went to the beach house and hid in the bedroom. When Rick and Steffy arrived, she peeked around the corner to watch them. She was unable to make out all their words, but when they kissed, she saw it and the truth became clear to her; Rick and Steffy were romantically involved.