At the police station, Eli informed Rafe that a search of Theo's laptop had revealed that the teen had been investigating a breach of DiMera Enterprises' cybersecurity system and had pinpointed an office building as the source of the attack -- the same office building he had apparently been caught breaking into on the night of the shooting. A company known as CFR Partners was on record as the renter of the office building.
At the DiMera mansion, Andre realized, while musing that it might be wise to take another look at the office building that had been linked to DiMera Enterprises' saboteur, that Kate wasn't really listening to his suggestions. She apologetically confirmed that she had other things on her mind. He assumed that she was worried that he might eventually change his mind about keeping her secret, but she clarified that she was more concerned about another person who knew what she had done. "And if he has inherited his father's need to do the right thing, then my secret's already out," she added with a sigh.
"So, you're blackmailing Steve Johnson's bastard son, [and] now you're afraid that Steve may know the truth," Andre summarized after Kate shared the whole story. Nodding, Kate explained that she'd had a suspiciously icy encounter with Steve recently that had left her concerned. Andre tried to assure Kate that there was probably nothing to worry about -- just as Kayla barged into the mansion with Steve, who had just finished telling his wife everything. "Told you," Kate said to Andre as Kayla began lashing out, upset that Kate had put Theo in harm's way and was blackmailing Tripp to keep the police from finding out the truth.
"Bad time?" Eli asked, joining the group in the living room. Kate innocently claimed that Steve and Kayla had actually been about to leave, anyway. Steve took the hint, but Kayla refused to budge, instead asking Eli if there had been a break in Theo's case yet. Eli vaguely confirmed that there had been a small break in the case -- one that had raised questions that Kate and Andre would hopefully be able to answer. "What kind of questions?" Steve asked curiously. "The private kind, I'm sure," Kate pointedly replied for Eli. Steve again tried to leave, but Kayla stayed rooted in place, announcing that she had important information to share.
Kate and Andre exchanged nervous glances as Eli asked Kayla, "Information on the case?" Steve, who was standing behind Eli, gave Kayla a shake of the head. Getting the message, Kayla -- talking to Eli but keeping her eyes locked on Kate -- reluctantly elaborated, "What you need to know is that Theo's condition hasn't changed...and that this is extremely hard on Abe, [who] has been at the hospital every single day, praying for his son to wake up. So whatever you need to do to get to the bottom of this case, please, do it quickly." Eli assured Kayla that everyone at the Salem Police Department was committed to solving the case in a timely manner.
After Steve and Kayla showed themselves out, Eli relayed to Kate and Andre the information that had been gleaned from Theo's laptop. Kate and Andre claimed that they were hearing the information for the first time, but Eli found that hard to believe -- especially since Theo had used a DiMera Enterprises credit card to purchase the scanner he had used to disable the office building's security system. Kate innocently claimed that there had been no restrictions on Theo's use of the credit card -- and no obvious reasons to monitor the spending of one of the most trustworthy people in Salem. "Trust me -- if either one of us had known that Theo was involved in an activity that was dangerous to him, we would have stopped him immediately," Kate added as Andre nodded in agreement.
Meanwhile, Steve explained to a somewhat annoyed Kayla that he had stopped her from revealing the truth to the police because Kate had the upper hand -- at least for the time being. Later, Kayla received a phone call from Kate, who reminded her that there would be dire consequences for both her and her stepson if they didn't continue to keep their mouths shut. "I could strangle that woman!" Kayla told Steve after ending the call. Steve advised Kayla not to waste energy on Kate, promising, "She'll get hers when the truth comes out -- and it will come out."
At the Martin mansion, J.J. contacted Hope and told her that he needed to see her right away. When she arrived a short time later, she observed that it looked like it had been days since he had last slept. "Every time I close my eyes, I see [Theo]," he explained. She tried to encourage him to talk to a professional, but he dismissed the advice, explaining that he had asked to see her so they could talk about her life, not his.
J.J., feeling responsible for what had happened to Hope, produced a letter of resignation, which he had drafted with the hope that his departure from the police department would allow her to return to it. Hope refused to let J.J. resign, insisting that Abe didn't want her involved in Theo's case and therefore wouldn't even consider reinstating her, with or without J.J.'s resignation, until it was resolved. Hope tried to assure J.J. that he had nothing to feel guilty about, but he disagreed, arguing that he had ruined the lives of two great people. "My life is far from ruined," Hope protested. "That still leaves Theo's," J.J. countered.
Hope started to stress that everything she had learned thus far about the night of the shooting had suggested that J.J. had followed the proper procedure for the kind of situation he had found himself in, but he soon interrupted to reiterate that he wasn't interested in talking about his life. He added, while opening the door to his room, that he didn't want to take up any more of her time, but she ignored the hint, assuring him that she wasn't in a hurry to leave. "Thanks, but I'd much rather be alone," he replied. She didn't think that was a good idea, so she offered to contact his mother, his sister, or his girlfriend, assuming that he might feel more comfortable talking to one of them. "I said I'm fine!" he snapped before adding, in a calmer tone, that he no longer had a girlfriend. "Please...go," he quietly begged her, fighting back tears.
While passing through Horton Town Square, Jennifer bumped into Eric, scattering a box of Christmas cards in the process. As Eric helped Jennifer pick up the Christmas cards, she mentioned that she had heard the good news about Will being alive -- and the bad news about his memory loss. When Eric revealed what Sami had done to try to restore Will's memory, Jennifer was stunned -- and somewhat angry, since Ben was still a potential threat to Abigail -- but managed to muster some empathy, knowing how it felt to be the mother of a child who was suffering the kind of pain that couldn't easily be relieved.
Later, Hope joined Jennifer and Eric and told them about her earlier conversation with J.J. Jennifer was disturbed to learn that J.J. had recently broken up with Lani. Jennifer started to rush off to the Martin mansion, but Eric suggested that it might be better for him to finally initiate the chat he had promised her that he would eventually have with her son. Jennifer hoped that Eric would be able to get through to J.J.
Meanwhile, back at the Martin mansion, J.J. stuffed a pair of earbuds in his ears, connected them to his cell phone, and started a playlist of songs, increasing the volume to its maximum level in a desperate attempt to drown out the sound of gunfire that was playing on a loop in his head. When that failed to distract him, he yanked the earbuds out of his ears and threw the cell phone across the room in anger.
Later, while J.J. was reading an article about Theo's candlelight vigil, Eric arrived to talk to him. "I don't feel like talking," J.J. insisted. "Then how 'bout listening?" Eric countered, reminding J.J. that, after all, there was no one in Salem who had a better understanding of what he was going through than the guy whose drunk-driving incident had resulted in a tragic death.
At the Salem Inn, Will explained to Sami that her twin brother had urged him to try talking to her one more time before deciding to cut her out of his life for good. "I didn't put him up to that, if that's what you're thinking," she preemptively stressed. "I don't think that. Um...I think he would have told me if that was the case, 'cause he actually seems like a very honest person," he replied, adding that her brother also seemed to know her better than anyone else did. Chuckling, she explained that, as her twin, her brother had a very unfair advantage. Nodding, he continued, "So, anyway, I learned some stories about some of the lengths that you went to [in order] to protect and defend me as a child, and even though I'm not totally convinced that you're not a crazy, self-interested control freak, I am willing to hear you out."
Sami was thrilled to hear Will say that, especially since she was planning to leave Salem soon -- and really wanted to leave on good terms with him. He assured her that he understood that she needed to spend the holidays with her younger children. "You should know, my first instinct would be to pack them up and drag them back here so we could all help you remember," she admitted. "Yeah, that, uh...that doesn't seem very fair to them," he mused. She agreed that it wouldn't be -- especially since she had already dragged them all over the world in search of answers about the reported death of her husband, the real E.J. DiMera.
"But I also think [that leaving is what's] best for you. I -- I can see now that, uh, I'm...I see that I'm making things worse for you, and, uh...I don't want that. I want you to have the space that you need," Sami told Will, fighting back tears. He observed that it was clearly hard for her to make such a decision. She confirmed that it was but stressed, "Full disclosure -- you should know, I am selfish, and I can be controlling and...crazy...sometimes...but I love my kids with my whole heart, and...and there is nothing I wouldn't do for any one of you." Nodding, he revealed that her twin brother had basically told him the same thing earlier.
"Among other things," Will continued. Chuckling nervously, Sami admitted that it was hard to even begin to guess which stories her brother might have chosen to share. "You definitely keep things interesting," Will diplomatically replied. "I also got to see some photos of my wedding...and he said that, you know, you were kind of thrown when I came out, but you ended up being, like, my biggest champion," Will continued. Smiling, Sami confirmed that she had always been -- and still was -- extremely proud of Will. "Anyway, he also said that, uh, because of stuff that happened to you when you..." Will began to add before letting his voice trail off.
Skipping ahead, Will continued, "That keeping your kids safe and happy was the most important thing to you, and that, um, you would go to extraordinary lengths to ensure that, up to and including breaking a serial killer out of a mental institution and getting him to strangle me." Sami conceded with a sigh that it hadn't exactly been her finest hour.
Will didn't argue with Sami on that point, but he admitted that he had experienced brief flashes of old memories since the reenactment, which weren't significant enough to get excited about but had at least helped him understand that it was possible that her crazy actions had stemmed from a place of love. He added that she had been unfairly receiving the brunt of his anger from the moment his life had been turned upside down in Memphis -- something that needed to stop because, after all, none of what had happened there had been her fault. She was quick to point out that she certainly could have handled the situation more sensitively, but he maintained that he could have handled the situation better, too. "I'm sorry for hurting you," he concluded. "I'm sorry that I sicced a serial killer on you," she replied. "Apology accepted," he assured her.
"So, uh...where do we go from here?" Sami asked Will, who admitted that he was still trying to figure that out -- but was hopeful that they could slowly work on their relationship. She happily assured him that he could reach out to her anytime via any method of communication. "Or you could just skip all that and come with me," she added. "I thought you wanted to give me space," he pointed out. "Had to ask," she explained with a shrug. Nodding, he politely declined, guessing that he'd have a better chance of regaining his memories if he stayed in Salem for the time being. He added, however, that he would consider visiting her and his siblings sometime, although he was quick to warn her, "Baby steps." Smiling, she hesitantly asked him, "So, uh...we're -- we're good?" He replied, "Uh...feels like we're...on the way to good?" She agreed to take that.
"I gotta say, this whole, like, 'fighting and then kind of forgiving' thing -- it feels really familiar to me. Do we do this a lot?" Will asked. "You have no idea," Sami replied with a laugh.
As Sami began jotting down her contact information for Will, he noticed a diamond ring on the floor. She thanked him for finding it and quickly slipped it on, explaining that it was the engagement ring E.J. had given her.
Will pocketed Sami's contact information then asked if he would get to see her again before she left town. She assured him that he would and extended a hand so they could shake on the matter, resisting the urge to hug him.
Later, Will returned to the Evans-Black townhouse and mused, while looking at a framed photograph of him and his mother, "Maybe she's not so bad, after all."
At the Horton Town Square, Jennifer asked Hope about Rafe. Hope reported that the engagement was back on -- news that Jennifer was thrilled to hear. Hope thanked Jennifer for advising her to work things out with Rafe.
Sami went to the police station to see Rafe, who was frantically searching his office for something. "Looking for Hope's ring?" she guessed, holding up her left hand while explaining that he had left the ring in her hotel room the previous night -- and she had been forced to pretend it was hers when her son had found it.
Rafe was pleased to hear that Sami and Will were on better terms than they had been the previous night, and Sami was likewise pleased to hear that Rafe and Hope had worked things out. "Which is why I need the ring," Rafe explained to Sami, who tried to remove the ring to hand it over to him -- but quickly realized that it was stuck.
As Sami and Rafe were trying to figure out how to get the ring off her finger, Hope arrived and wondered what was going on.