Brady and Arianna started to kiss, but she stopped him. He demanded to know why, because she looked like she wanted to kiss him. She even admitted that she wanted to kiss him. She thought it was a mistake to go to the Kiriakis mansion. He accused her of being evasive about why she was pushing him away. Brady asked if Arianna had a deep, dark secret, and said that he knew about secrets because he was a recovering addict. Arianna said he didn't know. Brady asked what Arianna was referring to.
She looked at Victor's picture and remembered Victor's orders that she stay away from Brady. She tried to leave, but Brady stopped her. He noticed that she had been looking at Victor's picture. He guessed that Arianna's reluctance to open up to Brady had something to do with Brady's grandfather. Brady assured her that his involvement with the family business was legitimate. Arianna said she knew that she could trust Brady, but she said that Brady couldn't trust her.
At the hospital, Nicole called Chad to talk, but he said they didn't have anything to say to each other. He said he would see her in court. She offered to let him see Sydney. Then she enticed him with the prospect of an offer that she thought he couldn't refuse. She offered to work out a compromise, but Chad was skeptical and accused her of trying to trick him. She said he was too smart to trick. Chad agreed to meet Nicole at the dock. Nicole realized that she had something to offer him that he might want more than Sydney.
Nicole left Stefano's room and ran into Lexie near the nurses 'station. Lexie found it surprising that Nicole was visiting Lexie's father. Nicole explained that she and Stefano had a lot in common, and Nicole missed talking to him. Nicole assumed that Lexie was judging her, but Lexie said she knew what lengths a woman would go to protect her child. Lexie said she wished she could have helped. Nicole asked Lexie for help, but Lexie didn't think that talking to E.J. would make a difference. Nicole didn't need Lexie to talk to E.J. She said it was about Sydney.
Mia thought that Sydney needed to stay with Nicole, because she was the only mother that Sydney had known. Mia wondered why Chad was so determined to get custody, because he didn't know how to take care of a baby. Mia vented about how Chad wouldn't listen to her. Will had an idea of who could help them.
Sami told E.J. that Nicole did what she thought was best as Sydney's mother. E.J. clarified that Nicole wasn't Sydney's mother. Sami tried to get E.J. to admit that he loved Sydney as if she were his own daughter. He told Sami not to tell him how to feel. Sami referred to Sydney as E.J.'s child, but he corrected her and said that Sydney was not his.
Sami reminded E.J. that Sydney was innocent in it all and she needed him, because Chad wouldn't be a good father. E.J. was upset that Sami took Nicole's side. Sami said her loyalty to Nicole in the matter was proof that Nicole had changed. E.J. said that Sami and Nicole were "cut from the same cloth" and he wouldn't change his mind. Sami realized that nothing would change E.J.'s mind, and she said it was a shame, because it meant that Johnny had a father who didn't know how to love.
E.J. said that the past few months wouldn't have been hell for him if he had not known how to love. Sami admitted that he knew how to love, but she lectured him about not letting his anger control everything. Sami said that E.J. saw Sydney as a weapon for him use to get revenge against Nicole. She said that Johnny would see that Johnny's happiness wasn't as important to E.J. as getting revenge. E.J. ordered Sami to leave. She warned him that if he kept throwing people out of his house, he would one day end up alone.
At the hospital, Nathan warned Melanie that they needed to be careful at work, because if people found out that they were involved, Nathan could get fired and Melanie could get kicked out of the nursing program. Melanie said that Nathan was the one who would give it away that they were seeing each other, because he had been drooling over her.
Maxine walked up, and Nathan changed the subject to medical procedures. Maxine told Melanie that she'd heard rumors from the other student nurses. Maxine asked Melanie why she volunteered for two extra shifts. Melanie said that she was trying to be helpful, but Maxine didn't believe her. Nathan tried to stick up for her, while Melanie explained that another student nurse's brother was home on leave, so Melanie wanted to allow the young woman to spend more time with him.
Melanie asked Nathan to initial some old bedpan inventories to give them an excuse to talk. She told him to stop defending her, because he was making it obvious that they were involved. She also wanted to know where their date would take place, but he wanted to surprise her. Melanie guessed that they were going to Chez Rouge, but he said that Maggie was working there, and he didn't want Maggie to know that they were breaking her house rules. Lexie and Maggie walked by, so Melanie covered and walked away.
Maxine told Lexie to check on Stefano. Lexie went to his room and found Victor standing by Stefano's bed. Victor said he was visiting a sick friend, but Lexie reminded him that he had held Stefano hostage and threatened to kill him. Victor said that he would never kill Stefano unless he had to. Lexie ordered him out of Stefano's room. Victor said that Stefano wasn't as "entertaining as he usually is, anyway." Lexie didn't think the situation was funny. Victor didn't find it funny, either -- he found it scary.
Victor said he preferred the world where he viewed his enemy as invincible, and that the myth of the phoenix gave everyone hope. Lexie said that part of the "world's pain" was caused by "old men trying to pretend they're not." Victor said that he and Stefano had a lot in common -- both had "strong, beautiful, good daughters" -- and Stefano was lucky to still have Lexie. Lexie told Victor to get out. He wanted to know Stefano's prognosis, but Lexie said it was none of Victor's business. Victor said he really hoped that Stefano would recover. He said there was "no way Kate should get off the hook this easily -- bitch."
At the pier, Nicole went to meet Chad. Chad wondered where Sydney was, but she said she had asked Lexie to watch Sydney for a while. Nicole guessed that Chad didn't want sole responsibility of his baby. Chad said that Sydney was his daughter and Mia wasn't allowed to give her away without telling him. Nicole guessed that Chad was motivated to get even with Mia. Nicole tried to explain Mia's decision, but Chad didn't want to hear it. He said that Nicole played him just like Mia did, because Nicole told him he could see Sydney, but she lied.
Chad asked if Nicole planned to bribe him, but she said that wouldn't work. Chad said it was because Nicole wasn't a DiMera any longer and was "flat broke." Nicole said that Sydney knew Nicole as her mother and if Chad took Sydney away from Nicole, it would break Sydney's heart. Chad said that Sydney was a baby and didn't know anything. Nicole accused Chad of not caring. Chad started to leave, but she stopped him.
Nicole apologized and said that he did love Sydney, but she said that if he loved Sydney, he needed to let her go like Mia did. Nicole promised to give Chad visitation rights if he gave up his custody fight, and she said that she would keep Sydney safe. Chad vowed to win his custody suit. Nicole asked him to do what was best for Sydney, but he said that what was best for Sydney was for her to be with her real father. Nicole tried to seduce Chad, but he was on to her.
Mia and Will went to Sami's place to ask for her help with Chad. Will explained to Mia that Sami could be very persuasive and was good at circumventing the rules. When Sami returned, Will tried to explain what was going on with Mia, but Sami said that E.J. had already filled her in. Sami comforted Mia. Mia thought Sami felt that Mia should have kept her baby, but Sami said she understood. She said that Mia put her baby first, unlike Chad.
Will explained that he'd just found out that Sydney was Mia's baby, but he couldn't tell Sami. Sami understood why Mia was so close to Grace. Mia thought that it was fate that Mia felt close to Grace because Grace and Sydney were born on the same day.
Mia told Sami about Dr. Baker's role in the adoption. She said that Nicole thought she was the ideal candidate to give up her baby, because Mia was alone, poor, and pregnant. Mia told Will and Sami about her baby's birth and how Nicole wanted Mia out of the picture. Mia said she understood how Nicole felt. Sami asked Mia if she was certain that she wanted Nicole to raise her baby.
Mia said that she wanted what was best for Sydney -- for Nicole to raise her. Mia was frustrated that she couldn't get Chad to understand that. Sami explained that men were territorial and made decisions. Mia was worried that Chad would get custody of Sydney. Sami vowed to help Mia and Nicole keep Sydney with Nicole.
E.J. stopped by the hospital to find Lexie playing with Sydney. He demanded to know what she was doing and what Sydney was doing there, and Lexie said that she was busy loving her niece. Lexie said that Sydney was Lexie's niece and goddaughter, and E.J.'s idiotic behavior didn't change that. E.J. demanded to know what Nicole was doing.
Lexie tried to reach Nicole on the phone to tell her that E.J. let the nanny take Sydney, but Nicole wasn't available. E.J. urged Lexie to keep her nose out of other people's business. Lexie empathized with Nicole, because she knew that Nicole's world was about to cave in on her. E.J. said the situation was killing him. Lexie could tell that E.J. was hurting, and she told E.J. that there was no change in Stefano's condition, which meant less chance of recovery. Lexie urged E.J. to help Nicole and Sydney. E.J. went into Stefano's room, wishing he could talk to Stefano. E.J. said he had no choice but to let Sydney go. Then Stefano's hand moved.
Melanie was ironing her clothes, getting ready for her date with Nathan. She thought that Nathan walked in, so she said, "Is it hot in here, or is it just me?" Maggie replied, "It's just you." Maggie asked if Melanie was going out with Nathan, and Melanie admitted that they were. Melanie could tell that Maggie was upset. Melanie said she liked it better when Maggie liked Melanie. Maggie said she still liked Melanie -- she was just worried that Melanie would hurt Nathan.
Maggie said that Nathan could be risking his career by getting involved with Melanie. Nathan walked in and overheard them talking. Maggie asked Melanie and Nathan to agree to no public displays of affection in the house and she agreed to stay out of their business. After Maggie left the room, Nathan apologized to Melanie. Melanie told him not to be sorry, because Maggie was just looking out for him. Melanie said she could possibly hurt Nathan, and she recounted all the ways that she had hurt men in the past.
Nathan urged Melanie to hurry up so they could leave, because it was against the rules for them to kiss, and the way that Melanie was talking made her irresistible. They almost kissed, but Melanie told him to let her get ready so that they could go out on their date.
Brady thought that Arianna wasn't being honest with him. She said it was because she couldn't, but he said it was because she wouldn't. Brady said he could accept that Arianna didn't want him to know something, and he promised to respect her privacy. Arianna said that was only part of it. She said she didn't mean to push him away, and she obviously couldn't if she tried. Arianna said that if they explored their feelings, they needed to do it in private and no one could know. Brady was excited about that idea. Meanwhile, Victor watched them from the hallway.
Arianna stopped Brady from kissing her, and she said she needed to go if they planned to keep things quiet. Brady promised to help Arianna track down Rafe. After she left, Victor told Brady that he saw Stefano. Brady tried to figure out if Victor saw him with Arianna. Victor asked how Brady was, and Brady said he was "never better." Brady left, and Victor thought to himself, "So you think."
Sami called Nicole and left a voicemail offering to help with Chad. When there was a knock at the door, Sami was surprised to find Brady with a worried look on his face. Brady told Sami that he offered to help Arianna find Rafe. Smirking, Sami said that he was back together with Arianna. At first, Brady denied he was dating Arianna again, but after a couple of shakes of his head, Brady admitted that he was seeing Arianna again. "You can't tell anyone," Brady pleaded.
Sami joked that starting Brady's relationship off with a lie was not a good sign. Brady admitted that he did not know Arianna's reason why she wanted to keep the relationship quiet. "Everything will work out fine and then all of the sudden she's just gonna disappear and then you and I will have a lot in common," Sami said. Brady asked Sami about Rafe's disappearance, and she admitted that she was worried by the fact that Rafe had not contacted his sister.
Down pier, Nicole attempted to seduce Chad. As Chad and Nicole's kissing became more passionate, Nicole attempted to pull away. However, the hormonal teenager pulled Nicole tighter to his body as she begged him to stop. When Nicole yelled out for help, a police officer ran over and pulled Chad away from Nicole. When the officer asked Nicole whether she wanted to press charges, Nicole vehemently said yes. Unfortunately for Nicole, the whole scene was just a dream in her mind.
Smiling, with her arms around Chad's neck, Nicole said, "So what do you say? You want to have a little fun?" Angry, Chad rebuffed Nicole's advances. "I'm scared you might be too much man for me," Nicole purred. A look of comprehension flashed across Chad's face and he broke into a wide grin. "I know that line. Oh my, God. You're that girl in the movie. You said it to that guy with the tool belt. Oh my, God, you're a porn star!" Chad said enthusiastically.
Smiling, Nicole argued that Chad was mistaken. Unfazed, Chad told Nicole that he believed she was the star of "Locker Room Lolita," and that she could not convince him otherwise. Frustrated, Nicole admitted that she was in the movie but that those days were in the past. Chad reasoned that he had trouble believing her porn career was in the past in light of the fact that she was coming on to him.
"Maybe someday you'll know what desperate is," Nicole retorted. "As much fun as it would be to brag to my friends that I bagged some hot, old nymphomaniac, I'm not doing anything to screw up getting my kid back," Chad said. "My baby isn't going to have some washed up porn star as a mother," Chad added. Furious, Nicole rounded on Chad and argued that Chad was going after Sydney only to get back at Mia.
Nicole cautioned Chad that he was not prepared to be a father. Nicole urged Chad to remember that Sydney would require all his time and effort. "I'd do anything to keep my daughter away from a psycho like you," Chad huffed. Shaking her head, Nicole told Chad to remember that E.J. is a DiMera and that he would eventually come around. Smiling, Chad told Nicole that he was not worried because his parents were lawyers and they could show her porn movie as evidence at a custody trial.
At the Brady Pub, Arianna told Roman that Brady was looking for Rafe. Roman wondered aloud whether Brady was helping Arianna because he was back together with her. "You and I both know that it is a hell of a lot more than just a mistake," Roman cautioned.
Worried that Arianna had exposed her undercover work to Brady, Roman questioned why she was telling him that she was dating Brady again. Arianna explained that Victor believed she was actually a drug dealer and threatened to tell Brady that she was a dealer if she did not break it off with Brady.
Roman suggested that Arianna keep dating Brady because if Victor was involved in the drug trade, it could flush him out. "Go find yourself a new stooge. I quit," Arianna said before going into the back room of the pub.
As Arianna looked at a text message from Brady on her phone, Roman joked, "He's a regular Lord Byron. ‘Thinking of you?'" Worried about the case, Roman threatened Arianna to keep working undercover or else he would make her look guilty in front of Brady.
"You made the deal. You got what you wanted. We're still waiting for your end of the bargain," Roman whispered. "You'll send me back to prison?" Arianna asked quietly. With a small smile on his face, Roman nodded yes.
"I need you to do this job," Roman said. Arianna agreed to continue working with the police department, but told Roman that she was afraid that Brady would learn that she had been in prison. Roman suggested that Arianna should tell Brady about her stint in prison, but Arianna was reluctant.
On the ship, Carly put cold washcloths on to Rafe's feverish head. Worried that Rafe would die without antibiotics, Carly urged Omar to prepare to offload the patient now that they were in Salem harbor. Omar suggested that they leave Rafe on the dock and call 911 rather than escort Rafe to the hospital. Carly disagreed, but Omar fretted that helping a stranger could lead Lawrence's men straight to Carly.
Carly told Omar that she had a friend that could help them, and that she would not abandon Rafe. Carly asked Omar to drop her at the dock and wait for her to signal him with a flashlight when she was ready to come back on board the ship. Omar promised to take care of Rafe while Carly went to fetch antibiotics. "Don't worry, Omar. Nothing ever happens in Salem," Carly quipped as she headed out to the deck of the ship.
At the hospital, Bo told Lexie that his marriage was in trouble. "Hope is pretty much wrong about everything and I'm pretty much right," Bo joked. Lexie laughed nervously, and asked Bo whether he really felt that way. Unnerved, Bo sheepishly looked away. Bo changed the subject to the volunteer program. Lexie suggested to Bo that they make Hope the head of the volunteer program in order to keep her involved with the Salem Police Department.
Bo politely declined Lexie's suggestion. Bo informed Lexie that Hope had officially moved out of the house and taken Ciara with her. "The kidnapping isn't the problem. Apparently it just dug up some issues that had been there," Bo said sadly. Bo explained that Hope was still upset about Patrick Lockhart and Zach's death.
"Maybe she keeps bringing things up because she thinks they still need to be resolved," Lexie suggested. Angry, Bo said that he thought Hope was using all their past problems as an excuse to end their marriage. "I don't think I've ever been this mad," Bo admitted.
Bo confided to Lexie that he was worried his marriage was over. Hoping to help make Bo feel better, Lexie reminded Bo that her marriage to Abe almost ended on multiple occasions. Grimacing, Bo told Lexie that the difference between the two marriages was that neither Lexie nor Abe was Hope. As Lexie shook her head light heartedly, Carly crept out of the elevators behind Bo and covering her face, rushed down the hallway.
Down the hallway, Carly broke into the medicine storage and stole some antibiotics to treat Rafe. As Carly started to exit the room into the hallway, she saw Bo talking to a nurse nearby. Stunned, Carly backed into the room away from Bo.
At the Java Café, Sami spotted Chad working behind the counter. Sami asked Chad if he would talk to her about Sydney. Sami told Chad that she had seen Sydney with Nicole and that she was happy. "There's nothing you can say that she hasn't already tried," Chad said. Sami cautioned Chad that she had already been a teenage parent and that Chad should rethink his plans for Sydney.
When Sami told Chad about how difficult it was to raise her son when she was a teenager, Chad reminded Sami that she got to keep her child. Sami conceded his point, put added that she kept her son because she was trying to hold on to a guy and not because she wanted what was best for her child. Sami gently urged Chad to take a hard look at the reasons why he wanted to keep Sydney, and if any of his reasons included his damaged pride, that he would only hurt his daughter in the long run.
When Chad asked Sami whether she hurt her son by keeping him, Sami admitted that when she was a teenager she had been selfish and put herself first. Sami continued that she felt she hurt her son because he was not as confidant as he should be.
When Sami asked about how Chad would handle going to college and dating while taking care of his daughter, he said that his top priority was being a father. "Okay. But just know that that means that she is stopping you from having the life that you want...and she is gonna know that you resent her for it. She'll sense it," Sami warned. Sami pleaded with Chad to do what was right for his daughter.
Chad admitted that he was worried about what would happen to Sydney. Sami suggested that the best way to make sure that Sydney was not hurt was to keep her with Nicole. "Maybe your right," Chad said quietly. "Maybe I'm looking at this whole thing the wrong way. You know you're the first person who makes any sense about this," Chad joked.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Nicole visited Brady and begged him for help. "When you first came back to Salem I was all about E.J. but I was so wrong," Nicole said breathlessly. "All along you were the one by my side. The one that really loved me," Nicole continued. As Brady looked at Nicole with a confused expression Nicole announced that she wanted to leave town with Brady.
At the Java Café, Chad confessed to Sami that she was the first person whose advice about his baby had made sense to him. Sami asked if that meant he was going to let Nicole continue to raise Sydney, but Chad needed to think about it some more. As Chad returned to work behind the counter, Maggie walked in and greeted Sami, raving about what a wonderful young man Will had become. Sami was touched, but made an excuse and began to leave. But as Maggie cheerfully gave Chad her coffee order, she revealed to Sami that she knew Chad through Mia-who knew Sami because she was Will's mom.
After Maggie left, Sami insisted to Chad that everything she had told him was true-she had just left out that Will was her son because she thought Chad wouldn't listen if he knew. Chad was furious. Sami explained that she and Will's father had been way too young and had fought all the time, and they didn't have a clue about how to raise a child. Will had ended up hating them both so much that he'd moved to Europe to get away from them.
An indifferent Chad didn't see what it had to do with him and his daughter. Sami maintained that Sydney could end up hating him, too-because he would be raising Sydney all alone, without Mia's help. Chad argued that he would never lie to his kid like Sami had, or make any of the other mistakes she had. Sami gently tried to continue to plead Sydney's case, but Chad flatly refused to listen, declaring that he would get custody of his daughter-and that was final.
After Sami had left, Chad's father-Charles Woods, the District Attorney-visited him. Chad didn't want to talk to his dad, insisting that everything was fine. "Your mother and I are trying to help you get through this," Charles entreated his son. "There's a baby's life at stake here-my baby," Chad retorted. "And there's no way I'm going to just 'get through it.'" He declared that he would not give up on his kid because it would make things easier on his parents. Charles replied that if Chad wanted to fight for his baby, he would need a good attorney. He handed Chad the business card of a thorough, discreet lawyer, but urged his son to give it a lot more thought before calling.
E.J. sat at Stefano's hospital bedside, filling his unconscious father in on DiMera Enterprises' latest deal. He stopped himself, admitting it was ridiculous to discuss business when Stefano's life hung in the balance and E.J.'s was falling apart. He urged Stefano to get better, then kissed him on the cheek and left. As E.J. closed the door, Stefano's hand fluttered.
In the supply room, Carly broke into the drug cabinet and swiped some medicine. As she was leaving, she overheard Maxine talking to Bo, and hung back to eavesdrop. Carly smiled fondly as she watched Bo pick up Theo and hug him enthusiastically, listening in as Bo and Lexie discussed their respective kids. Bo confided that Ciara had grown up a great deal while she was away, joking that he planned to forbid her to date until she was in her thirties. Carly was dismayed when she heard Lexie refer to Bo as the police commissioner.
Carly then left, trying casually to hide her face as she boarded the elevator-just as Maggie exited. Maggie did a double take and tried to stop the doors from closing, but was too late. Puzzled, she told Lexie and Bo that she'd just seen a woman doctor who looked very familiar get on the elevator. Lexie said that she was the only female doctor working on that floor, so the woman must have been from another floor.
Lexie went in to sit with her father, pleading with Stefano not to let diabetes take him from his family. Suddenly, his heart monitor began to beep more loudly. Lexie excitedly took Stefano's pulse, calling out to him.
Maxine found Maggie and Bo and asked if they'd seen Lexie, because there were drugs missing from the medicine cabinet. Bo offered to begin an official investigation. Maxine informed him that the lock on the cabinet had been broken, but the most surprising thing was that the thief had taken antibiotics.
On the boat, Omar tended to a feverish Rafe, who was mumbling incoherently about Sami, Nicole, and the baby. When Carly arrived, Omar told her about the man's delirious ramblings, but Carly was more concerned with giving her patient the antibiotics she'd stolen. She quickly filled a syringe and rolled up Rafe's sleeve. "Let's get this fever down, and then you can tell me who you are, and why you're so upset about a baby." Carly told Omar that they should know whether the drugs were working within a couple of hours, and then she could get the man to safety.
Victor dropped by the Brady Pub to pay Arianna a visit. He mentioned her cocaine dealing, and Arianna worriedly asked if Victor had told anyone else about it. Victor assured her that he always kept his word, and asked if she had kept her distance from Brady as they'd agreed. "I don't want Brady to know what I do out of work," she replied. "It would hurt him, and I don't want that." Victor concurred that he also didn't want to see Brady get hurt, and wished her goodnight.
Victor then called to arrange a meeting with E.J., and soon arrived at the DiMera mansion. After briefly discussing the situation with Nicole-and how Victor had warned E.J. against marrying her-Victor informed E.J. that he was there to discuss business. E.J. led Victor into the parlor. Victor announced that he wanted to sell half of one of the Kiriakis operations to E.J., one that was lucrative, but off the books. "I'm talking about our side of the river-all of it," Victor explained. Grinning skeptically, E.J. asked, "What's the catch?"
Victor asserted that there was none, but since neither Philip nor Brady wanted anything to do with that part of the business anymore, Victor had no one to leave it to when he retired. E.J. didn't believe that Victor would ever retire. Victor replied that Stefano's illness had given him something to think about-plus Victor thought that E.J. could probably use a distraction. E.J. wanted to research the business first, so they said goodnight. "You father would be very proud," Victor declared to E.J. on his way out.
At the Kiriakis mansion, an incredulous Brady asked Nicole if she really meant it when she said she wanted the two of them to run away together. Nicole replied that she knew he loved her, with no strings. Brady argued that she loved E.J. and had gone to great lengths to hold onto E.J. "Loving E.J. was the biggest mistake of my life," she declared firmly. "And believe me, it is over." Brady countered that if E.J. hadn't found out about her lies and thrown her out, she wouldn't be there with Brady.
Nicole admitted that was true, but she couldn't continue to chase after someone who didn't love her, calling E.J. a "cold, cynical bastard." She pointed out that Brady knew everything about her and loved her anyway, and she loved him, too, in part because she could ask anything of him. "Yep, that's been my pattern," Brady reluctantly concurred. Beaming, Nicole asked, "So, does that mean you'll do it? You'll go away with me-and Sydney?"
Brady was a little taken aback that she meant to take Sydney with them, but Nicole argued that she couldn't let Chad raise her baby girl. She then outlined her plan for Brady: the three of them would go to a country that didn't have an extradition treaty with the United States, and buy a house where they could start a wonderful life together.
Brady snapped her out of it: "Nicole, that is not going to happen." He asked if she wanted to run away with him because she wanted to be with him-or because she needed his money. Nicole found the question hurtful, insisting that there was no one in Salem who cared about her but him. Brady pointed out that Chloe, Mia, even Will and Sami had begun to care about her. "What if I didn't have any money?" he asked. Nicole insisted that it wasn't about the money, but the life they could have together.
"The last thing I want to do in the world is hurt you," Brady gently stated, kissing Nicole's hands. "But no, I can't go with you." Nicole begged him not to abandon her, sure that if she stayed in Salem, Sydney would be taken away from her and she would go to prison. Brady urged her to be realistic, adding reluctantly that he had become involved with someone else. He promised to help her in any way she needed, whether it was to find her a lawyer or a counselor or anything else, but running away wasn't the answer. Nicole lashed out at him, angrily declaring that she didn't need his help. "My life is over and it is all your fault!" she shouted as she stormed out.
On her cell phone at the pub, Arianna quietly discussed the big boss voice with Troy. After she hung up, she muttered to herself in frustration. "How am I supposed to meet this guy so this nightmare can finally be over? Damn it!" Brady arrived just then, and although Arianna was clearly glad to see him, she whispered, "I thought we agreed to keep this private?" Brady cleared his throat and played along. "No, thanks, ma'am. Just coffee to go." Arianna obligingly poured him a cup. As she handed it to him, she furtively invited him to meet her on the pier shortly.
Later, Arianna found Brady on a bench next to the water, and apologized for all the secrecy. Brady assured her that it was much easier than what he'd just been through, adding that he couldn't discuss it any further. He noted that she'd seemed upset when he'd seen her at the pub, and asked what was going on. Taking him by the lapels, Arianna replied, "Can we just make this all about us right now? Nothing else, no outside world-can we do that?" Brady wholeheartedly concurred, and they kissed.
Nicole was waiting on a bench outside the pub when Mary arrived, pushing Sydney in her stroller. Nicole was relieved to see them, admitting she'd been afraid of what E.J. might have done to prevent it. Mary expressed her sympathy for what Nicole and Sydney were both going through, and Nicole thanked her sincerely. As Mary walked away, Nicole lifted Sydney out of the stroller and hugged her tightly. "I'm never going to let anyone take you away from me," Nicole murmured, "and I will do everything I can to make sure we're together, okay? Always."
Nicole left a voicemail for Chloe, informing her that Chad wanted to sue for custody and begging for Chloe's help, but Nicole dissolved into tears and had to hang up. "Oh, God, no one can help me," she sobbed just as Sami walked up and overheard. "Nicole, it's going to be okay," Sami gently reassured her. "I'll help you."
Outside the Brady Pub, Nicole frantically tried to reach Chloe for help, but Chloe didn't answer the phone. Sami walked by and overheard Nicole, so she volunteered to help. Nicole said that Sami couldn't help Nicole. Sami insisted and invited Nicole back to her place. Back at Sami's place, Sami told Nicole that Sami's attempt to convince Chad not to sue for custody of Sydney had backfired. She also told Nicole that she talked to E.J., but was unsuccessful. Sami said that Mia was supportive of Nicole raising Sydney instead of Chad.
Sami told Nicole that she believed a mother had a right to do anything for her child. Nicole understood that Sami was thinking of how she had hidden Grace's paternity from E.J. Nicole asked Sami if she would want to help Nicole if Sami hadn't lost Grace. Sami said that she couldn't help the way she felt, and she wanted to help. Nicole confided in Sami that she planned to leave the country with Sydney and never return.
Sami wondered how Nicole would take care of Sydney. Nicole didn't know how she would make it financially, because E.J. had taken away her money and credit cards. Sami told Nicole that Nicole was Sydney's true parent and no one could take Nicole's place. Nicole felt a pang of guilt and started to tell Sami about the baby switch. Sami tried to ease Nicole's guilt, but Nicole said that Sami was the last person who should be helping her. Sami wondered what Nicole meant.
Just when Nicole started to confess her crimes, Sydney started babbling, and Nicole changed her mind. She said that if Sami helped her, Sami could get in trouble, putting Allie, Johnny and Will at risk. Sami, told Nicole that she wouldn't get caught, and Nicole didn't need to tell Sami where she was going, so that Sami couldn't tell on Nicole anyway. Nicole said the point was moot anyway, because Nicole needed about $50,000 to flee the country and start over somewhere else. Sami said she knew exactly where to get it, and left.
Nicole was sad, thinking about all the people that she and Sydney would leave behind, but she said that it was necessary because no one could know that Sydney was Sami's baby. When Sami returned with the money, she explained that John had given Sami money to help her out when she returned from witness protection. Nicole thanked Sami and got choked up.
Sami said goodbye to Sydney. She told Sydney that she would never forget the baby. Nicole said that Sami had no idea how Sami had helped her. Sami said it meant a lot for her to help Nicole keep Sydney. Sami told Nicole to be happy, and Nicole and Sydney left.
Kate cornered Stephanie at the Java Café. At first Stephanie thought Kate wanted her to convince Philip to forgive his mother, but Kate was really there to make a pitch for Stephanie to give Philip another chance.
Nathan and Melanie enjoyed their date watching a movie at the park. They were folding up their blanket when Philip walked up. Melanie was surprised to see him there watching a movie alone. Philip said that he was there, because Titan was sponsoring the graveyard movie series, and he was there to give money to the Cleaner Parks Foundation. Nathan realized his phone was missing, and when he went to look for it, Philip asked Melanie if she thought that Philip was stalking her.
Melanie said she didn't think that. She said she had wondered why he was there alone, since there were tons of women who probably wanted to be with him. Philip said no one that he was interested in was available. Nathan returned by the time Philip left.
Stephanie told Kate that she and Philip would not be getting back together, because Stephanie only wanted to be with Philip if he changed into the person that she wanted instead of being the person he was. Kate told Stephanie all that mattered was that Stephanie and Philip loved each other. Philip overheard and told Kate to "shut up."
Stephanie excused herself, and Philip chewed Kate out for interfering in his love life. Kate accused Philip of not being able to handle his love life. She recounted all of his failed relationships. Stephanie was the "one bright light" in Philip's life, Kate said. He said he didn't want advice from a woman who "poisons people in her spare time." Philip told Kate to worry about her new family -- "a family who doesn't just try and kill people, they actually succeed -- well in most cases anyway." Kate warned Philip that any potential relationship with Melanie would be a disaster.
Chloe burnt dinner for Daniel. She was still fanning the smoke away when Maggie dropped by unannounced with dessert -- her way of apologizing for not believing Daniel was innocent and that Kate really poisoned Chloe. Chloe told Maggie that she was forgiven. Chloe noticed that she had a message on the answering machine. She played it and heard Nicole's desperation.
Chloe filled Maggie in on the details of Nicole faking the rest of her pregnancy and adopting Sydney. Chloe thought that she wouldn't be able to survive what Nicole was going through. Chloe realized she wouldn't have to worry about losing a baby she adopted, because she and Daniel planned to have their own child. Maggie wondered if Chloe could carry children given her medical history.
Daniel looked over Chloe's file and was concerned, so he called another doctor for a second opinion. Daniel gave Chloe flowers when he got home. They made love and then ate cake in bed. Chloe planned to take a cooking class so that she didn't burn down the apartment, and because it was important to have healthy food for their future kids. Chloe noticed Daniel's reaction and wondered what was going on.
Daniel told her that there could be a problem, and he wanted to have more tests run. Chloe accused Daniel of using her health as an excuse to avoid having kids. Daniel said that after reviewing Chloe's records, he realized that when she had cancer, the treatment she received might have destroyed her ability to conceive.
When they returned to Maggie's house, Melanie babbled on about her shoe getting broken, while Nathan stared at her and told her that he couldn't get over how beautiful she was. They started to kiss, and Maggie caught them. Melanie and Nathan promised not to let it happen again. Maggie said that she couldn't trust Melanie, because she'd made a promise before and she broke it.
Nathan tried to stand up to Maggie, but he realized that it was Maggie's house and they broke the rules that she had set. Nathan tried to convince Maggie that it wouldn't happen again, but Maggie said it was too late, and she couldn't allow Nathan and Melanie to live in her house together. Melanie started to go pack her bags, but Nathan stopped her. He told Melanie that she wasn't leaving. He said that if they couldn't live there together, he would move out.
Lexie called E.J. to the hospital to tell him that Stefano was waking up, but she warned him that she couldn't be certain that Stefano would be the same as before. Lexie and E.J. stood by Stefano's bedside and tried to wake him. Stefano opened his eyes and didn't say anything at first, but when he did, Lexie and E.J. could tell that he was the same father they knew and loved.
Stefano asked where Kate was. E.J. accused Kate of being responsible for Stefano's heart attack, but Stefano said it was his own fault for eating unhealthy foods, and he promised to stick to his diet. Stefano asked for them to call Kate down to the hospital. He also asked to see his grandchildren. E.J. and Lexie looked at each other. When Stefano mentioned wanting to see Nicole, E.J. started to explain. Stefano demanded to know where Nicole was.
Arianna was on the phone in her room, reassuring Roman that Victor had not told Brady that she was a drug dealer. She placed a stack of cash in a lock box, from which she then removed a gun. As she hung up, she heard a banging noise outside her window. "Is someone there?" she called out, then crept around a corner and hid, gun drawn. Brady crawled through the window, quietly calling, "Ari?"
Arianna quickly stashed the gun under her bed and revealed herself. "Surprise!" Brady said, explaining somewhat nonchalantly that he had climbed up the side of the house and through the window. Shaking, a relieved Arianna hugged Brady, but demanded that he never do anything like that again.
Brady reminded her that they had to keep their relationship a secret. Showing her a large backpack, he explained, "Since I can't take you out on a proper date, I brought the date to you." Arianna was still freaked out that someone might have seen him climbing in her window, or might find out that they were seeing each other. She asserted that getting back together had been a bad idea. Brady kissed her deeply, then asked her, "Do you really still think this is a bad idea?"
Later, Brady and Arianna shared a picnic on the floor by candlelight. "I'm glad you came here tonight-even if you did scare me half to death," Arianna admitted, laughing. "All right, no more coming through the window in the middle of the night," Brady conceded lightheartedly. After kissing for a while, Brady picked Arianna up and placed her gently on the bed, and they made love.
At the Brady house, Hope had just finished carrying her suitcases downstairs when Victor knocked on the door. He was dismayed to hear that Hope and Ciara were moving out. Victor empathized with what Hope had gone through-not just with Ciara's kidnapping, but also Zack's death, because he knew from experience that the pain of losing a child never went away. He asked if Hope were sure she really wanted to leave without any explanation for Bo, or at least a face-to-face goodbye. In a whisper, Hope replied that if she had to look Bo in the eye, she might not be able to leave.
Victor invited Hope to move into the Kiriakis mansion. Hope seemed uneasy, so Victor assured her that he didn't conduct business at home-and the feud with the DiMeras was over. Victor believed that Bo and Hope were soul mates, so he hoped Hope's stay at the mansion would allow them the time to rebuild their relationship. "I love my sons more than anything, more than my own life," Victor stated sincerely. "And since Isabella's passed, you're the only daughter I have now." Hope was touched. She shook Victor's hand and agreed, "We'll try it. See how it goes."
Will and an anxious Mia waited in a conference room for Justin to arrive. Will tried to reassure her that Justin would keep Chad from taking Sydney away from Nicole. Just then, the door opened, and they heard Chad tell Justin, "You're hired."
Justin sat everyone down, and encouraged Chad and Mia to talk things through before they went any further with the case. Will interrupted. "How did this happen, anyway? You were supposed to be representing Mia." Justin explained that he hadn't realized when Chad called him that they were the same case. Chad angrily declared that it was none of Will's business, and demanded that Will leave. Although Justin agreed that Will probably should let Mia and Chad work it out privately, Mia wanted Will to stay.
Chad sniped at Will, who countered with insults about Chad's stint in reform school. When Will called Chad a delusional, arrogant jerk, Chad leaped out of his seat and attacked Will. Justin managed to separate them, and got them to sit back down. Justin then suggested that Chad try to reach a custody agreement with the adoptive mother. "No way," Chad replied. "This is winner take all." Mia was appalled, arguing that there would be no winner if Sydney were taken away from the only parents she'd ever known. Chad retorted that it hadn't been his idea to give his kid to an ex-porn star, and declared that he wanted full custody.
Justin informed Chad that he couldn't take the case, citing the bad blood between the Kiriakises and the DiMeras. He pointed out that if Chad had disclosed all the details when he'd hired Justin, Justin could have told him that from the beginning. "I guess it's like you're always telling me, Chad," Mia said with an ironic smile. "Better to be honest from the get-go." Will asked if Justin could still help Mia. Justin replied that he couldn't help Chad or Mia, because after learning privileged information from both parties, it would be a breach of ethics. Chad stomped out, declaring that his dad would help him find a new lawyer.
Mia was disappointed that Justin couldn't at least give her some advice. Justin gently stated that Mia had essentially sold Sydney, instead of giving her up for adoption, and that was highly illegal. Mia exclaimed that she'd done it because she loved her baby more than anything. Sobbing, she wanted to know what was going to happen to her little girl. Justin cautioned her that courts almost always leaned toward the biological parents, and if she had signed away her rights, it meant that Chad would get custody of Sydney.
At the Java Café later, Mia fretted to Will about what would happen if Chad won. "He can't take care of Sydney by himself, and his parents are not going to help him," she said. Chad arrived and overheard, and informed Mia that his parents were on his side. "They hired a new lawyer for me. So you best believe I'll be getting her, Mia-and that's the last time you'll ever see that little girl." After a smug Chad strolled back out, Will assured Mia that Nicole would do everything in her power to protect Sydney. Mia hoped Will was right.
Justin dropped by the Brady house to talk to Bo about police matter that involved a client. After informing him that Bo was at the station, Hope deduced that Justin intended to stick around Salem for a while. Justin admitted sheepishly, "Yeah, well, you know, the last of my kids left for college, and Adrienne and I could use a little break." Justin saw the suitcases and assumed that Hope had moved back home.
Hope informed him that, even though she didn't have many good memories of the place, Victor had persuaded her to move into the Kiriakis mansion with Ciara. Justin was surprised, but promised to help them feel at home-at least until they agreed to return to their real home. He grabbed a suitcase and carried it out. Hope followed, with one last, sad look around.
At the Brady Pub, Victor was irked when he couldn't reach Brady by phone. As he hung up from leaving a message for Brady, Victor overheard Pete telling someone that Arianna had asked for the night off.
Nicole breathed a sigh of relief when she found that her key to the DiMera mansion still worked. She pushed Sydney's stroller into the foyer, where Kate immediately ordered her to leave. Nicole explained that she needed to retrieve some documents. Kate permitted her to enter, but took away Nicole's house key. Kate watched as Nicole rifled through the desk, deducing when Nicole removed Sydney's passport that the two of them were fleeing the country.
Kate picked up the phone and threatened to call E.J. to tell him what Nicole was up to. Nicole called Kate's bluff, counter-threatening to seduce one of Kate's sons if she prevented Nicole from leaving Salem. Kate put the phone down, but argued that Stefano would be very unhappy if Sydney disappeared from his life. Nicole vowed to protect Sydney at all costs, but pleaded with Kate not to tell E.J. that they were leaving.
Kate agreed, but only because her grandson, Will, had somehow gotten involved in the custody suit over Sydney. "So, you need to go before I change my mind," Kate commanded. "You need to leave-get out of our lives, and get out of Salem for good." When Nicole stopped to search for a document she was missing, Kate accused her of stalling. "You don't really want to leave, do you?"
On her way out of the mansion later, Nicole paused for a final look around. She smiled down at Sydney. "It's you and me against the world, kiddo," Nicole said sadly, and then closed the door behind them.
At the hospital, Stefano asked to see his grandchildren, adding that he also wanted to speak with Nicole. Lexie and E.J. hesitated, so a confused Stefano pushed. Finally E.J. irritably informed Stefano, "I don't know where she is, Father-and, to be completely honest, I don't give a damn." Stefano demanded to know what was going on, so E.J. filled his father in about Nicole's miscarriage, ensuing fake pregnancy, and adoption of Sydney from "that criminal, Dr. Baker." When Stefano learned that E.J. had kicked Nicole out, he asked where Sydney was. E.J. replied that Sydney was with her mother.
Stefano flipped out. "Oh, dio mio! She's with Sami?" Lexie and E.J. were puzzled. "You meant Nicole, didn't you, Father?" Lexie asked gently. Stefano covered: "I must have mixed up the interchangeable bleached blonde liars you have sired children with." E.J. and Lexie chuckled, and Lexie assured Stefano that the confusion would soon pass. Stefano then ordered E.J. to find Nicole and Sydney and welcome them home. E.J. urged Stefano to calm down, but refused to allow Sydney to live in his house, because she wasn't his daughter.
"She is your daughter, you fool!" Stefano declared adamantly. E.J. argued that the rights of Sydney's birth parents had to be respected. Stefano grew increasingly agitated, pushing Lexie away when she tried to calm him. "He's got to hear this, all right? Elvis has got to know that this is the thing that-" Suddenly Stefano's heart monitors began beeping wildly, and Lexie sprang to action, shouting out the door for a crash cart.
Once Lexie and a nurse had stabilized Stefano's heart rhythm, Lexie cautioned E.J. that whatever the old man had to say might remain a mystery forever. E.J. didn't understand why Stefano had gotten so upset. Lexie felt that Stefano was very emotionally attached to Sydney-despite her lack of DiMera blood-and he likely feared he would never see her again. E.J. noted that Stefano had once ordered his men to follow Nicole, and wondered whether Stefano already knew the truth. Lexie firmly asserted that Stefano would never allow Nicole to pass off someone else's child as E.J.'s.
Later, E.J. pleaded with Stefano to open his eyes. At last Stefano did, murmuring weakly that he wanted to see Sydney. E.J. reluctantly consented, but asked what Stefano had been trying to say earlier. Stefano's eyes closed and he appeared to be unconscious again, so Lexie quietly asked E.J. to let their father rest. As soon as E.J. had left the room, Stefano opened his eyes.
Nicole and Sydney were on a plane bound for Rio de Janeiro, waiting to take off, when Sami called to say goodbye and wish them luck. Nicole was grateful, but regretfully didn't think it would be a good idea if they kept in touch. "Have a great life, Sami. Maybe we'll see each other in the next one, huh?" Nicole stated before hanging up. She tried to be cheery as she told Sydney to wave bye-bye to Salem. Nicole's eyes filled with tears as she looked out the window. "Goodbye, E.J.," she whispered. "I'll always love you."
When E.J. returned home, he informed Kate that Stefano had awakened. She was furious that no one had called her. E.J. snapped that Stefano had already experienced a setback and might not make it, demanding, "You happy? This is what you wanted, isn't it?"
Stefano recalled a conversation with Nicole during which he had asked what would happen if Samantha ever found out the truth and filed for custody of Sydney. Nicole had steadfastly vowed that Sami would never find out. Stefano used his bedside phone to dial Nicole's cell phone, which rang just as the flight attendant on her plane was making the final departure announcement. When Nicole answered, Stefano demanded, "You come to me with my granddaughter-now!"