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Wednesday, May 17, 2017
by Mike

Tripp was in the Horton Town Square, watching one of the DVDs Ava had recorded for him, when Jade took a seat at his table and teased him about the number of times he had replayed them. "Hey, it's the only way I can get to know my mom, thanks to Kayla," he bitterly reminded her.

Tripp told Jade about the conversation he'd had with Adrienne, which had been enough to finally convince him that Steve really was covering for Ava's real killer. Tripp was determined to get justice for Ava, but Jade doubted that it would be possible to link Kayla to Ava's death, especially since Steve was on record as Ava's killer and even had a government agency backing up his story. "Then I'll find another way," Tripp vowed.

After saying goodbye to Jade, Tripp contacted Steve and asked if he was busy. Steve said he was about to start working on a case but would be happy to have some company. Tripp agreed to meet Steve at the Salem Inn. Steve, who was at the Brady Pub with Joey and had been trying to convince him not to give Kayla too much grief for setting him up on a blind date with a colleague's daughter, rushed off after telling him to try to have fun.

Later, Jade arrived and saw that Joey was on a date with someone. Jade took a seat at the bar and waited until Joey's date stepped into the bathroom, leaving him alone at their table. Jade marched over to Joey and observed that it hadn't taken him long to get back into the dating game. Joey reminded Jade that although he had just recently severed ties with her, their time as a couple had actually ended long before then. "I've moved on. I think you should do the same," he advised her.

Jade went back to the bar and listened as Joey and his date, Alyssa, arranged to see each other again sometime, having realized that they actually had a lot in common with each other. When Jade heard Joey say that Kayla was the one who had set him up with Alyssa, she grumbled, "That witch will do anything to keep Joey away from me!"

After Joey and Alyssa parted ways, Jade approached Alyssa and introduced herself as Joey's ex-girlfriend. Jade warned Alyssa that Joey was a total player. Alyssa was skeptical at first, but Jade managed to sell the story, claiming that Joey had tricked her into believing he was in love with her just so he could get her into bed -- and had then dumped her when she had wound up pregnant, causing her to lose the baby. "Look, just take it from me and skip the second date. You'll be glad you did," Jade advised. "Definitely," Alyssa replied before walking away.

Tripp followed Steve into a room at the Salem Inn and excitedly asked, "So, what's the story? Are we here to, you know, make a big drug bust? Break up a jewelry heist?" Steve said he wouldn't have invited Tripp to tag along if he were working on any sort of case that could prove dangerous. Tripp insisted that he could handle himself in dangerous situations. "Maybe you could, but, uh, I couldn't handle it if anything happened to you," Steve stressed.

Getting back to Tripp's question, Steve explained that although he would love for his son to keep believing he was "a badass crime buster," the truth was that many of his cases involved things like custody disputes or cheating spouses. Standing in front of the room's only window, Steve directed Tripp's attention to a building across the street. A single room in that building was lit, and that room was the focus of Steve's investigation that night. A woman believed that her husband was using that room for trysts with a coworker, and it was up to Steve to either prove or disprove her theory.

Even though the case was going to be less exciting than Tripp had hoped, he was still eager to see his father in action. Tripp warned Steve to temper his expectations, though, pointing out that although they were starting to get along with each other better, their situation was still quite complicated. Nodding, Steve assured Tripp, "I understand. We'll take it slow."

When Steve encouraged Tripp to raid the minibar, explaining that any charges could be written off as business expenses, Tripp surveyed the options and wondered if Steve wanted anything. Steve asked for a can of root beer. Surprised, Tripp revealed that he liked root beer, too. Tripp removed two cans of root beer from the minibar, and Steve proposed a toast to one more thing they had in common with each other.

Steve soon changed the subject, wondering if Tripp had made any plans for the future yet. Tripp happily vowed that his days of busing tables were over for good. Steve didn't blame Tripp for wanting to abandon that kind of work, but he hoped that Tripp was planning to do something with his life instead of just living off the Vitali fortune forever. Tripp assured Steve that he wasn't opposed to the idea of holding down a job of some sort because he was used to working at that point -- and he would have to, anyway, since he was getting his inheritance in stipends instead of one lump sum. "I just wish I had some idea what I really wanted to do," Tripp added.

Steve reminded Tripp of Kayla's recent observation that he could be well suited for a career in medicine. Tripp somewhat nervously pointed out that medical school was a big commitment. Nodding in agreement, Steve spontaneously suggested that it might be helpful for Tripp to shadow Kayla for a bit to get a better sense of what that kind of career path would entail. "Not a bad idea," Tripp muttered thoughtfully.

Steve was pleasantly surprised that Tripp seemed willing to take his advice, since he was used to having Joey and Stephanie roll their eyes at him every time he tried to make a suggestion. "They don't know what they have," Tripp guessed, knowing that it was natural for most kids to take their parents for granted. Tripp explained that he, on the other hand, was happy to finally have someone who cared about him enough to offer advice.

Steve admitted that he hadn't always been the greatest father; in fact, he had missed most of Stephanie and Joey's childhoods. He added that although he had been separated from Stephanie due to circumstances that had been out of his control, he had willingly walked out of Joey's life because he had been under the impression that leaving would be the only way to protect Joey from harm. "You do that a lot -- go to the extremes to protect the people you love," Tripp observed. Nodding, Steve stressed that there was nothing he wouldn't do to protect his family.

Tripp quickly changed the subject, having just noticed activity in the building across the street. A man and woman soon began kissing in the building's only lit room. Having confirmed that the client's husband was indeed having an affair, Steve grabbed a camera and began snapping pictures to prove what was happening. "Geez. You'd think they'd close the blinds," Tripp mused as he watched the couple with great interest, using Steve's monocular to get a closer look. "Is what they're doing even legal in this state?" Tripp soon added, prompting Steve to take the monocular away, protectively insisting that Tripp wasn't old enough to see such things yet.

Later, as Steve was packing up his supplies, Tripp wondered if he was ever tempted to lie to spare a client's feelings. Shaking his head, Steve explained that his job was to simply investigate and report his findings; he admitted, however, that he certainly didn't enjoy breaking bad news to clients, even if it was better in the long run for them to know the truth.

"I bet it was tough on Kayla when she found out about you and my mom hooking up last year," Tripp mused. Taken aback, Steve wondered where Tripp had heard that tidbit of information. Tripp claimed that it had been mentioned in the police report about Ava's death. Steve was surprised to hear that but seemed to accept the answer as an honest one.

Steve hesitantly began to explain what had happened. Realizing that Ava really had blackmailed Steve into sleeping with her, just as Jade had claimed, Tripp muttered, "That's so sick and twisted." Tripp guessed that Kayla had been really upset when she had found out. "She was devastated," Steve confirmed.

Later, Tripp joined Jade in a secluded section of the town square and told her that he had spent some time with Steve that night. "He actually gave me an idea on how to get close to Kayla, which could help when it comes to ruining her life," Tripp revealed. "She deserves to pay," Jade insisted.

Meanwhile, at the hospital, Steve alerted Kayla that Tripp might soon ask about the possibility of shadowing her for a few days. Kayla said she would love that. As Steve stepped aside to take a phone call, Joey approached Kayla, who was eager to find out how his date with Alyssa had gone. Joey admitted with a sigh that although he had actually enjoyed himself, he had been preoccupied with concerns the whole time, knowing that he would always have to keep a major secret from any girl he got involved with. "Don't get mad, but...at least with Jade, I could be completely honest, and she still loved me," Joey added.

Elsewhere, Marlena sadly informed Brady that she still hadn't managed to track down John. Kayla soon interrupted to share the results of Brady's latest round of tests -- results that, unfortunately, weren't promising. Kayla reported that Brady's body still wasn't responding to immunosuppressants, and it wasn't likely that another viable heart donor would be found anytime soon. Kayla promised, however, that she and Valerie were going to continue to do everything in their power to save Brady's life. Brady assured Kayla that he wasn't ready to admit defeat yet, but he seemed aware that his situation was quite grim.

After Kayla left, Brady apologetically admitted to Marlena that he had sent Eric to Greece in search of Nicole and Holly. As Marlena started to dial Eric's number to find out how the search was going, John burst into the room and greeted her and Brady. Thrilled but also shocked, Marlena noted that, according to the ISA, John was supposed to be on an important assignment that couldn't be interrupted for any reason whatsoever. "Well, it turns out that someone gave [the ISA's executive director] an earful, and she got a sudden pang of conscience," John explained, giving Marlena a knowing look. She flashed a sheepish grin in return. He added that he had called in a few favors in order to get the assignment put on hold for a while.

Eric awoke in Xander's villa, tied to a bedpost. Xander was furious that Eric had helped Nicole escape from the villa, but he was certain that his men would eventually capture her -- since, after all, she would never leave the island without her precious child, who was still in the care of a nanny. Laughing, Eric informed Xander that Nicole wasn't the only person who had escaped from the villa.

Nicole boarded the waiting jet and found the pilot, who reunited her with Holly. When Nicole revealed that Eric was still back at the villa, the pilot explained that he had been given permission to leave without Eric if necessary. Nicole said she was fine with that plan. The pilot started preparing to fly the jet to Salem, but Nicole insisted that she couldn't go back there. Nodding, the pilot promised to find a suitable alternative destination.

Nicole placed a phone call to Salem University Hospital and posed as Belle in order to convince a nurse to patch her through to Brady's room. Brady was delighted to hear from Nicole, but when he asked to talk to Eric, the call got disconnected before she could explain what had happened to his brother. Meanwhile, the pilot announced that he was ready for takeoff.

Realizing that she couldn't leave Brady's brother behind, Nicole left the jet and flagged down a nearby police officer. After hearing Nicole's story, the police officer agreed to help her rescue Eric. When they arrived at the villa, she urged the police officer to arrest Xander, but the police officer ignored her. Xander gleefully informed Nicole that the police officer was actually on his payroll.

The police officer left after receiving a reward from Xander, who was shocked that Nicole had risked her freedom to rescue Eric, of all people. Xander locked Nicole in the same room Eric was being held in. As Nicole freed Eric from his bindings, he demanded to know why she had returned for him. She explained that she had done it for Brady's sake.

Meanwhile, back in Salem, John took a seat at Brady's bedside and rested his head on his sleeping son's chest, promising not to leave again until the doctors declared that everything was going to be okay.

On the next Days of our Lives...
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• Nicole worries about Deimos' plan.

• J.J. and Lani press Guy for information.

• A plan to raid Xander's villa is set in motion.

• Brady says goodbye to John and Tate.

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