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INs AND OUTs
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 Recaps for The week of January 20, 2014
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Monday, January 20, 2014
by Mike

In the basement of Daniel's apartment complex, Eric conceded that, while he had probably never truly stopped loving Nicole, it didn't matter because she loved Daniel. Nicole confirmed that she loved Daniel, but she admitted that there was more to the story, and she nervously eyed the leaking gas pipe as she promised that she would tell Eric everything -- if there was enough time left for her to do so.

Fearing that the toxic fumes would eventually start to affect her mind, Nicole chose her words carefully, explaining that she and Daniel had shared a few moments because, unlike Eric, she had never really been strong enough to go through life alone. Nicole acknowledged that her relationship with Daniel might have worked out the first time if outside circumstances hadn't caused it to blow up, and she admitted that they might have even found their way back to each other eventually if one of them had wanted to revisit their relationship badly enough.

Confused, Eric observed that Nicole was making it sound like she and Daniel weren't together, and she confirmed the suspicion, revealing that she and Daniel had lied about their relationship because they had known that it would be best for Eric to believe that she had moved on with her life. Nicole clarified that, while she still loved Daniel, she was no longer in love with him.

"The one I'm in love with is you. I love you. When you first came back to Salem, I was -- I was at the lowest part of my life. Then I saw you, and I thought God had answered my prayer. And then I saw your Roman collar, and I realized that God had a sense of humor. And I tried to convince myself that my feelings weren't real -- that I was just on the rebound. And I saw what being a priest had -- had done for you. You didn't even -- you didn't even have to try to be committed or devout; you just -- it was just so right, and you know what? It -- it made me love you even more. And I fought it. I did -- I fought it. And then I -- I just had to face that there was no use fighting it anymore, and you know who made me do that? Kristen," Nicole weakly revealed to Eric, who agreed that Kristen had a sharp eye for human vulnerabilities.

"I wanted to kill her. But she was right. And that's why I -- I turned to that guy Vargas, and -- and Brady, and I just kept trying to quit. This was about running away, for all the good it did me. There is no running away from what I'm feeling -- especially now," Nicole admitted. Nicole explained that she had forced Daniel to help her lie to Eric about her true feelings because she had known that Eric wouldn't have allowed her to help him prove what Kristen had done to him if he had known how Nicole really felt about him. Eric conceded the point and marveled at the realization that Nicole had loved him all along, even after he had accused her of raping him.

Nicole admitted that if Eric had wanted to change the way that she felt about him, that would have been one way of doing so. Eric chastised himself for being such a clueless jerk, but Nicole urged him to stop being hard on himself, pointing out that he had eventually realized his mistake and apologized for the things that he had said to her. Nicole said that Eric's ability to accept responsibility for hurting her was something that had made her love him even more, since it had proven that he was the man she had always believed that he was -- the man she had fallen in love with.

"We love each other. Who knew?" Nicole mused with a weak laugh as a tear rolled down Eric's cheek. Nicole admitted that she was glad that she had told Eric the truth and that they finally knew how they really felt about each other, but she added that nothing had really changed, since he was still a priest and was therefore unavailable. Nicole drowsily leaned her head on Eric's shoulder as she weakly admitted that she hoped that he was right about the existence of an afterlife, since she couldn't deal with the possibility that she would never get to see him again after that night.

Eric noticed a big red button on the wall that he was facing -- a button that seemed to be connected to a box that he assumed housed the building's breaker system. Eric reasoned that if he could turn off the building's power supply, someone might go down to the basement to find out what had happened. Nicole reminded Eric that they were tied to a steel pole and would never be able to reach the button, but Eric revealed that he had been the kicker on his high school football team. Eric removed one of his shoes and balanced it on his toes so that he could kick it toward the button, but he barely missed it.

Nicole assumed that she and Eric had just exhausted their last option, but he still had one shoe left. After uttering a prayer for a miracle, Eric kicked his remaining shoe toward the button and managed to hit it. The lights remained on, but Eric reasoned that he had to have just turned something off. Eric tried to talk to Nicole, but she was unresponsive. After failing to rouse Nicole, Eric eventually lost consciousness, too.

After receiving a phone call from Roman, Marlena went to Daniel's apartment and found Roman and Daniel waiting for her there. Daniel regrettably informed Marlena and Roman that he was worried about Eric and Nicole, whom he had been trying unsuccessfully to locate. Roman started to ask Daniel for a description of Nicole's vehicle so that he could check to see if it was in the parking lot, but Daniel suddenly got a better idea.

Recalling that Eric owned a smart phone, Daniel suggested that finding the phone might be the best way to find Eric. Marlena just happened to have the password for Eric's phone written down on a notebook in her purse, so Daniel entered the password into a program on his own cell phone that was capable of tracking Eric's phone via GPS. The program led the group to a secluded section of the park, where Chyka had dumped Eric's belongings in a trashcan earlier that night.

Daniel placed a call to Eric's cell phone, and when it started to ring, Roman quickly located it in the trashcan. Roman said that he would get the cell phone dusted for fingerprints, but he wasn't very optimistic about finding any useful evidence on it. Daniel suddenly remembered that the mysterious doctor who had visited his office earlier that day had seen and recognized Eric, who had also gotten a good look at the doctor. While Roman contacted the police station to report everything that he had learned, Daniel asked Marlena to help him retrace Eric and Nicole's last steps so that they could try to figure out where the doctor could have intercepted them.

Marlena recalled that she had interrupted an argument between Brady and Nicole earlier that day that had been about Eric, so Daniel tried to contact Brady, but the call went to voicemail. Meanwhile, Roman ended his phone call and asked Daniel to return to the apartment complex to wait for some police officers to arrive to check Daniel's apartment for fingerprints and other evidence. After Daniel left, Roman hugged Marlena and assured her that everything was going to be okay.

Brady entered the Kiriakis mansion and walked straight over to the living room bar, calling out for Maggie and pouring himself a glass of vodka when his greeting was met with silence. Before consuming the alcohol, Brady thought about Theresa's earlier accusation about his insobriety. Annoyed, Brady slammed his free hand against the bar and muttered that he needed to get away from Salem for a while. After thinking about the matter for a moment, Brady smiled and added that he knew just where to go.

Later, at the Salem airport, Chyka took a seat next to Brady, who informed him that their flight had been delayed. Brady received a phone call from Daniel, but he chose to ignore it. Brady was hungry and wanted to get something from the vending machines, but he didn't have anything smaller than a $20 bill in his wallet, and he guessed that the vending machines wouldn't accept that denomination of currency. Chyka offered to make change for one of Brady's $20 bills, but when he stood to remove his wallet from his jacket pocket, Eric's rosary -- which Chyka had inadvertently neglected to dispose of earlier -- fell to the floor.

Brady picked up the rosary and admired it, observing that it was identical to the one that his brother owned. Chyka took the rosary from Brady and dismissively reasoned that there were probably millions of identical rosaries in the world, but Brady knew that the rosary hadn't been mass-produced because his brother was a priest who had gotten his while doing missionary work in Africa. "But I know that's not his, because you'd have to pry it out of his dead, cold hands for him to give it to you," Brady added with a laugh as he received another phone call from Daniel.

Annoyed, Brady turned off his cell phone as Chyka said that Brady's brother was a good man. Chyka mused that the priesthood had developed a bad reputation in recent years, despite the fact that there were a lot of truly dedicated priests in the world. A fellow traveler, who had been listening to the conversation and had finally decided that he couldn't remain silent any longer, scoffed and told Brady and Chyka that if they had bothered to read a newspaper recently, they would have heard that one of the priests at St. Luke's had made a video of himself having sex with some blonde.

Brady stood and impatiently advised the man to mind his own business and shut his mouth. Brady insisted that the traveler had no idea what he was talking about, but the traveler doubted that Brady knew any more about the situation than anyone else did. "Yeah, I do, because that priest is my brother," Brady announced. As Chyka listened with interest, Brady decided that, while he really wanted to go to Las Vegas, the trip wasn't worth spending three hours trapped on a plane with a jerk.

Brady grabbed his luggage and stormed off, and the traveler took Brady's seat next to Chyka and dismissively stated that they were better off without their fellow traveler anyway. Chyka quickly agreed, and when someone later announced that it was time for them to board their flight, Chyka stood and discreetly tossed Eric's rosary in a nearby trashcan before following the other passengers onto the plane.

As Daniel returned to his apartment and made another attempt to contact Brady, he overheard an argument between two fellow tenants -- a man and a woman, the latter of whom was insisting that the man was unable to understand her position because he had never experienced a hot flash. Curious, Daniel wondered what was going on.

The woman explained that the air conditioning had stopped working a few minutes earlier and that the building's supervisor wasn't answering his phone. The man added that he had gone down to the basement to find out what was going on and had discovered that the key to the boiler room was missing. The man didn't think that there was any cause for alarm, since there was no need for air conditioning in the middle of January.

After the tenants departed, Daniel entered his apartment and checked his air conditioning unit, which was also not working. Daniel called the female tenant back to his apartment to find out when her air conditioning unit had stopped working, and she revealed that it had stopped working approximately thirty minutes earlier. Daniel grabbed his cell phone as he hoped that his suspicion was right and that Eric and Nicole were still alive.

At the Horton cabin, E.J. and Abigail continued to kiss, unaware that someone was taking pictures of them outside. E.J. removed his suit jacket as Abigail unfastened his belt buckle and started to unbutton his pants, but she pulled away from him before things could progress further. "Oh, my God, I can't believe myself. What am I doing? I don't understand -- it's like I -- I turn off this switch in my brain that tells me that this has 'disaster' clearly written all over it," Abigail mused as she put her coat back on. E.J. agreed and acknowledged that it was a good thing that he and Abigail had not made the same mistake twice.

Abigail grabbed her purse and started to leave, but E.J. stopped her and stressed that he had never meant to hurt her with his abrupt request for her to stop calling him. E.J. assured Abigail that he also hadn't been trying to ship her off to Europe or buy her off, adding that he actually cared about her. Abigail assumed that E.J. was just saying that to placate her, but he insisted that he was being sincere. E.J. maintained that he and Abigail had a great connection with each other and that they had simply taken that connection too far, and she agreed.

E.J. insisted that he didn't want to hear Abigail denigrate herself, since he respected -- even if he didn't entirely understand -- the fact that she was a genuinely good person. E.J. added that he was grateful for the time that he and Abigail had shared together and that he hoped that they could still be friends. Abigail thanked E.J. for his kind words and admitted that hearing them had helped her feel better about the situation. E.J. offered to give Abigail a ride back to Salem on his boat, but she pointed out that it would probably be better for them to leave the island separately.

At the DiMera mansion, Sami received a visit from Gabi, who was worried that Julie was going to figure out what had happened to Nick. Sami tried to assure Gabi that there was nothing to worry about, but Gabi seemed more interested in hearing assurances from E.J. Gabi gushed that she had a lot of faith in E.J. and believed that there was nothing that he couldn't handle.

Sami guessed that Rafe wouldn't be very pleased to hear Gabi say such positive things about E.J., but Gabi insisted that Rafe would show E.J. the same kind of gratitude if he knew how E.J. had been protecting her. Gabi continued to sing E.J.'s praises until she noticed that Sami seemed slightly uncomfortable. Gabi apologized and wondered if there was something going on between Sami and E.J. Sami vaguely confirmed that all couples occasionally went through rough patches.

After acknowledging that the situation was really none of her business, Gabi decided to be nosy anyway, wondering if Sami knew just how much E.J. loved Sami. Sami nodded and clarified that she had never questioned E.J.'s love for her. Assuming that the issue might have something to do with Rafe, Gabi assured Sami that he had moved on and was getting his life back together. Gabi observed that it looked like Sami -- who had reunited with E.J., the man she might have been meant to be with all along -- was doing the same.

Gabi started to say something else, but she decided to stop talking when she remembered that she had never enjoyed hearing unsolicited advice about her relationship with Nick and that Sami probably felt the same way. Sami clarified that she was actually interested in hearing what Gabi had to say about the situation, so Gabi continued that there was nothing that E.J. wouldn't do for Sami.

Later, after Gabi left, E.J. returned to the mansion, and Sami announced that she wanted to talk to him. E.J. dismissively stated that he was exhausted and didn't want to have another circular conversation about his and Sami's unresolved issues, but she was undeterred, admitting that she had been doing a lot of thinking about the situation and had realized that she was the person who was most responsible for the problems that they had been having lately. E.J. said that Sami didn't have to take all of the blame, and she dryly clarified that she had only accepted most of the blame.

Sami explained that her recent trip had helped her gain some perspective, adding that she had realized that she might have allowed her ego to stop her from being able to fix the problems that she and E.J. had been dealing with lately. "I hate what your sister did to my brother. I hate that you didn't tell me when she told you. But she's your sister, and blood is blood. And I understand that she did this to Eric -- not you. My brother's just trying to move on with his life. Maybe I should do the same thing," Sami reasoned.

E.J. said that if he and Sami were going to continue their conversation, it had to be about them and only them, meaning that he wanted Eric and Kristen's names to stay out of it. "Fair enough. I'd like to go first. E.J., I know I can't hold you responsible for the actions of every other member of your family. I remember when we moved in here together, we promised that we wouldn't let your family come between us, and I understand that that is exactly what I have done, even after you stood by me and were there for me during one of the worst and scariest times in my life. I took your love and your support and your loyalty for granted, and I'm ashamed of myself," Sami admitted. E.J. wondered if Sami was trying to say that she was ready to end their ongoing separation.

When T spotted Will entering Club TBD, he rushed over to see "the bling," but he was surprised to find that Will wasn't sporting a new ring. "What are you, a moron? Sonny proposed, and you said no?" T asked incredulously. T couldn't understand why Will had turned down Sonny's proposal, since Will was in love with Sonny, so Will tried to explain that it wasn't as simple as just loving someone. "Why not? He's crazy about you, he's a great guy -- I mean, heck, I'd marry him if I swung that way," T jokingly replied.

Will laughed and appreciatively acknowledged that, while things between him and T had been tense for a while after T had learned that Will was gay, T had turned out to be a real friend who was clearly in Will and Sonny's corner. "Uh, well, real friends deserve real answers. So, you say you love Sonny -- when are you gonna start saying yes?" T asked as Sonny emerged from the back of the club.

Unaware of Sonny's presence, Will and T settled into their chairs as Will stressed that T couldn't tell anyone about Sonny's proposal. "And for the record, I'm going to say yes the minute I know it's not gonna hurt him for me to say yes," Will added after T promised that the proposal would stay between the three of them. Confused, T wondered how accepting Sonny's proposal could possibly hurt Sonny. "You remember when I told you that things were complicated? That was putting it...mildly. But hopefully things won't be anymore," Will vaguely clarified.

T wondered if Sonny was okay with Will's decision to turn down the proposal. "God, I sure hope so. I love him more than I ever thought I could love somebody," Will replied, unwittingly placing a huge grin on Sonny's face in the process. T asked Will to describe that feeling, but Will didn't think that was necessary because he was confident that T would one day find someone who would make him feel the same way.

T wondered if Will knew just how lucky he was. "Are you kidding? Yeah, I know how lucky I am; I know how lucky my daughter is. We've got the world's greatest guy in our lives, you know? Whether we're married or not, he's stuck with us -- permanently," Will happily replied. Meanwhile, Sonny revealed himself to T, who abruptly excused himself so that he could get back to work. Sonny cleared his throat and took a seat next to Will, who turned to face him and wondered how much of the conversation he had overheard. "Enough to make me want to marry you more than I did before -- and I didn't think that was possible," Sonny said before leaning in to kiss Will.

Later, Gabi joined Will and Sonny at the club and told them about Julie's earlier inquiries about Nick. Gabi concluded that Sami had assured her that there was nothing to worry about, but Will skeptically pointed out that Sami always believed that there was nothing to worry about. As Gabi started to sing E.J.'s praises again, Abigail entered the club and approached the group.

Sonny stood to let Abigail have his seat, but she wasn't certain that the group would want her to join them, since it had seemed like they had been in the middle of a serious conversation when she had arrived. Gabi summarized that she had simply been telling Will that she had changed her mind about E.J., concluding that she was really glad that E.J. was in Sami's life. Abigail evasively stated that she didn't really have an opinion about Sami and E.J.'s relationship either way and simply wanted Will to be happy. Will thanked Abigail, who abruptly excused herself, assuring the group that she would see them at the christening the following day.

As Gabi breathed a sigh of relief because Abigail hadn't overheard anything incriminating, Will grabbed his coat and excused himself, explaining that he had forgotten to tell Abigail something. Will followed Abigail to a secluded section of Horton Town Square, where he stopped her and asked if everything was all right. Abigail claimed that she was simply exhausted, adding that she was planning to return home and go straight to her bedroom to get some sleep, but Will pointed out that it was going to be difficult for her to do that because she was headed in the opposite direction.

Abigail laughed off her mistake, but Will wasn't convinced, urging her to drop the act and tell him what was going on. Will reminded Abigail that he had known her for his entire life and could tell when something was bothering her. Will guessed that the matter had something to do with a guy, and Abigail shook her head in disbelief as she wondered how he always managed to see right through her. Will urged Abigail to give him all of the details, but she evasively claimed that she didn't want to talk about the subject.

Will incredulously asked if Abigail was actually turning away a single girl's greatest resource. Confused, Abigail wondered what Will was talking about. "The gay friend. Well, haven't you ever seen Sex and the City? You tell me your problems, I give you insight into how straight men operate, and then I give you a solution. And then you owe me for life," Will jokingly summarized. Abigail doubted that even Stanford Blatch -- one of the characters on the show in question -- could figure out how to solve her problem, but Will simply took that as confirmation that she did want to talk about what was bothering her.

Will encouraged Abigail to share the man's name, but she insisted that she couldn't do that. "Oh, my God. I know who it is," Will suddenly announced.

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

After receiving a tip from his neighbor about the air conditioning, Daniel realized that there was something going on in the basement of his apartment building. Daniel called Roman and told him that he believed Nicole and Eric were in the basement. Daniel grabbed his medical bag and headed downstairs. Roman told Daniel that he would send the police.

Overcome by the leaking gas pipe, Nicole and Eric passed out. Outside the room in the hallway, Daniel attempted to open the door but found it locked. As Daniel pondered why the key to the door was missing, he realized that he could smell gas. Frantic, Daniel knocked on the door and called out to Nicole and Eric. Inside the room, Eric stirred awake.

Eric groggily called out to Daniel. Frantic, Daniel grabbed a fire-axe from the nearby wall and chopped at the wooden door until it splintered. Daniel kicked in the door, broke a window to air out the gas, and then rushed to Nicole's side to check her vital signs. Daniel noted that Nicole was still breathing. Daniel untied the ropes from Nicole's wrists and carried her out of the basement room into the hallway. Officers arrived on the scene and freed Eric as Daniel worked to revive Nicole in the hallway.

As one officer turned off the gas, another officer helped Eric into the hallway next to Nicole and Daniel. Daniel called Nicole's name until she opened her eyes. As Nicole fought to stay awake, Daniel promised to help her survive.

At Club TBD, Julie asked Hope to look for Nick because Julie feared he was missing. Julie swore that Nick had kept in touch with her in the past and felt that it was odd that Nick had stopped talking to her. The police station texted Hope. Hope promised to investigate Nick's disappearance for Julie then she ran off to work.

In the DiMera living room, Sami told E.J. that she had taken his love and support for granted. When E.J. asked if the separation was over, Sami stammered. Sami explained that she had been moved when Gabi had told Sami how well E.J. had handled the matter with Abigail. Shifting his eyes away, E.J. noted that he had done what he'd had to do.

Sami said that Gabi had gushed about how lucky Sami was to have E.J. in her life. With a nervous grin, E.J. noted that Gabi was naïve in her relationships. Sami joked that Gabi's marriage to Nick was proof of Gabi's naïveté.

"She talked about how you're the kind of man who always stands by his woman. No matter what. And she's not wrong about that," Sami said. Sami took E.J.'s hand in hers and added that Gabi had said she had seen real love between Sami and E.J. When Sami asked if Gabi was right, E.J. said that he had hoped there was a chance for a reconciliation.

"I'm happy that Gabi saw that, but I would rather that it had been you," E.J. said. "You have my attention. I'm right here," Sami said with tears in her eyes. Crying, Sami and E.J. kissed tenderly, then he swept her up in his arms. As the kissing grew more heated, a laughing E.J. suggested that they head upstairs. Sami agreed. E.J threw Sami over his shoulder. As E.J. walked toward the stairs, his phone rang. Sami fished in E.J.'s pocket for his phone, but a nervous E.J. put Sami down and grabbed the phone from her.

Curious, Sami asked who was calling. With a scowl, E.J noted that Marlena was calling. Realizing that Sami had turned her phone off, she took the call. Marlena informed Sami that Eric had almost died and that he was on his way to the hospital.

In the park, Will asked Abigail the name of the man that she was obsessing over. When Abigail declined, Will guessed that Abigail was involved with an older man. Annoyed by the volume of Will's deduction, Abigail asked Will to quiet down. Will asked if Abigail was reluctant to talk to him about the man because the man was an older guy. Defensive, Abigail reminded Will that nothing had happened with Austin. Abigail swore that "this man" was different.

"Different how? Because you've already been in bed with him?" Will asked. When Abigail shook her head, Will said that he had seen Abigail with an older man. Stunned, Abigail's mouth dropped open. Will noted that he had thought Abigail and the man were on friendly terms but that he realized there was something more going on. Abigail begged Will not to tell anyone.

"Forget me. This guy is in a way serious relationship," Will said. When Abigail said that things had unexpectedly happened, Will disagreed and said that Abigail was an adult and could have stopped herself from sleeping with someone. Shocked, Abigail asked Will if he hated her. Will said no. When Will mentioned how friendly Abigail had been with his creative writing teacher, Mr. Sutton, Abigail did a double take.

Abigail stressed that she was not involved with Will's teacher and that the man she had slept with was no one that Will knew. Confused, Will asked Abigail why she had behaved like Will knew who Abigail's lover was. Abigail said that she had reacted to Will's statement that he had seen Abigail with her lover, and she added that she did not think Will knew the man. Shrugging, Will guessed that Abigail felt that her affair was a mistake. Abigail thanked Will for his concern.

As Will and Abigail walked through the town square and talked about the christening, they ran into a distraught Julie. Julie asked Will about Nick. When Will said he had not heard from Nick, Julie mentioned that she had talked to the police in New York. Julie vowed to find out what was wrong. When Will suggested that Nick was having fun in New York, Julie swore that Nick would not forget his family.

"You make it sound like a conspiracy," Will said nervously. "Well, I'm beginning to think that that is what this is," Julie said. When Will asked Julie if she believed people were lying to her, Julie shook her head and explained that she was worried. Before leaving, Julie noted that she had asked Hope to talk to Gabi.

As Will stared silently at Julie walking away, Abigail thought about her conversation with E.J. on Smith island. Abigail remembered that E.J. had asked her not to talk to Hope about Gabi's reaction to Nick's text message.

Jordan and Rafe walked through the town square and talked about his job. Rafe explained that he had consulted on a case, and his work had led to an arrest. With a smile, Rafe asked Jordan to celebrate with him at the Brady Pub.

In the Brady Pub, Lucas talked to Sheryl about her new job. Sheryl was excited to start at Mad World. When Sheryl mentioned how happy she was to leave her expensive apartment in Birmingham, she revealed that Jordan had been her roommate. Lucas asked about Sheryl's time living with Jordan, and Sheryl fidgeted and asked Lucas to drop the subject. As Lucas nodded, Rafe and Jordan entered the pub.

Rafe asked Lucas about a bet they had made on a football game. As Lucas fished in his wallet for the money that he owed Rafe, Jordan and Sheryl looked at one another nervously. Jordan and Sheryl talked at the table as Lucas and Rafe chatted at the bar. When Sheryl mentioned that she had been talking with Lucas about Jordan, Jordan scowled. Sheryl assured Jordan that she understood that Jordan valued her privacy.

Jordan apologized for saying that Kate had only offered Sheryl the job at Mad World because of Kate's interest in Jordan. Sheryl and Jordan agreed that they both wanted to stay in Salem. Smiling, Sheryl looked at Rafe, and Jordan noted that her relationship with Rafe was not serious. When Sheryl asked why Jordan had left, Jordan stared at Sheryl, unsure how to answer the question.

At the bar, Rafe watched Sheryl and Jordan across the room and noted that there was a lot of tension at the table. Lucas said that Jordan and Sheryl had once been friends and might be friends again. When Rafe joked that Lucas was going out of his way to be nice to Sheryl, Lucas smirked. After ordering food, Rafe and Lucas carried the plates back to the table and rejoined Sheryl and Jordan.

Over dinner, Jordan and Sheryl told Rafe and Lucas stories about when they had been roommates. After a meal with laughter and conversation, Lucas and Sheryl said goodbye and left. When Rafe noted that Jordan and Sheryl had seemed to get along, Jordan countered that Sheryl had been a good person and that she was happy that Sheryl had found a good job at Mad World.

As Lucas and Sheryl left the pub, Sheryl headed for the car while Lucas took a phone call from Kate. When Kate asked about Sheryl, Lucas lied and told her that he had not seen Sheryl since he had left the office.

At the hospital, the EMTs rushed Nicole and Eric into the emergency room. Hope arrived and asked Daniel what had happened. Daniel explained that Nicole and Eric had been tied up and locked in a room with an open gas pipe. When Hope asked for a description, Daniel noted that Nicole and Eric were his first priority so Hope would have to stay with him as he worked on his patients. In his hospital room, a semi-conscious Eric murmured Nicole's name.

Daniel checked on Nicole. As Nicole opened her eyes, she asked about Eric. Daniel assured Nicole that Eric was fine and in another room. Nicole weakly asked to see Eric, but Daniel gently pushed her back against the bed to rest. Hope offered to check on Eric for Nicole. Nodding, Nicole said that the man that had attempted to murder them was the man that had poisoned Eric. Hope assured Nicole that the police were hunting for the man that had left Nicole for dead.

When Nicole asked how Daniel had found them in the basement, Daniel explained that his neighbor had noticed the air conditioning was not working and he had gone to the basement to investigate. Smiling, Nicole said that Eric had caused the power outage to the air conditioning and had saved their lives.

In Eric's room, Hope asked the doctor if she could talk to Eric. As Eric weakly called out "Nicole," Hope sat at Eric's bedside and assured him that Daniel was taking excellent care of Nicole in another room. Hope added that Nicole was conscious and talking. When Hope asked about the man, Eric noted that Kristen had paid the man. Hope questioned Eric about the man that had abducted him. Eric informed Hope that the man had attempted to inject Nicole with the same drugs that the man had previously administered to Eric.

Tired, Eric mumbled that he wanted to talk to Nicole. Hope placed the oxygen mask over Eric's mouth and promised him that she would get an update on Nicole. As Eric drifted off to sleep, Hope left the room. Eric slept restlessly and remembered pieces of his last conversation with Nicole about his feelings for her.

Down the hallway, Daniel asked Nicole what had happened. Nicole explained that the man in Daniel's apartment had surprised her and then had drugged her. When Daniel said that he had been scared about what had happened to Nicole, she smiled and reminded Daniel that she was tough. Though Daniel encouraged Nicole to sleep, she refused. Nodding, Daniel encouraged her to rest then he left the room. Nicole thought about her last conversation with Eric.

Hope and Roman returned to Nicole's room to question her about Nicole's abductor. Nicole admitted that her memory was still fuzzy. Nicole told Roman that Eric had saved her life. Smiling, Roman said that he was proud of his son. After Roman and Hope left, Nicole remembered Eric telling her that he loved her, and she remembered her admission that she still loved him.

"He loves me. He loves me. He loves me," Nicole whispered through tears. In Eric's bed, he opened his eyes and remembered when he and Nicole had admitted that they loved one another. Eric struggled to sit up but was too weak.

In the hallway outside Eric's room, Hope and Daniel talked about the doctor that had attempted to murder Nicole and Eric. Hope and Daniel agreed that Eric and Nicole were lucky to have had one another throughout their ordeal.

In the hospital waiting room, an emotional Sami ran into her mother's arms and asked about Eric. As E.J. entered the room, Roman walked in behind him and announced that the doctor had confirmed that Eric was doing well. When Sami asked what had happened, Marlena explained that Nicole and Eric had almost died from gas inhalation. Roman confirmed that someone had attempted to kill Eric, and he asked E.J. if E.J. had any ideas who might be to blame for the attempt on Eric's life.

As E.J. stared at Roman, Sami asked E.J. to answer the question. Defensive, E.J. said that he had no information. Marlena noted that Eric and Daniel had been close to proving that Eric had been drugged the night he had slept with Kristen. Roman explained that Daniel's computer hard drive and research had been destroyed. Furious, Sami asked Roman to find the person that had attacked Eric and make him pay.

Roman checked with the hospital staff and learned that Eric and Nicole were going to survive the gas poisoning. As Sami and Marlena hugged in celebration, Roman offered to check with the nurse about when they could visit Eric. When Sami lamented that there was no coffee, Marlena offered to get coffee from her office. Alone with E.J., Sami asked him if he had heard Roman say that Daniel had proven that Eric had been drugged. Sami accused Kristen of hiring the man to drug Eric. E.J. asked Sami not to jump to conclusions.

"Don't play dumb," Sami said. E.J. asked if Sami thought he knew who had drugged Eric, and she said no. Sami noted that E.J. had the ability to find out who had drugged Eric, and she ordered him to use his connections. When E.J. resisted, Sami begged him not to stand in her way.

"You said blood was blood," E.J. said. "Your blood tried to kill mine," Sami countered. When E.J. asked if they were back to square one, Sami blamed E.J. and his family and stormed out of the waiting room. Down the hallway, Marlena saw how upset Sami was and steered her over to Eric's window to look at her sleeping brother. E.J. walked down the hallway and stared at Sami.

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

At the Horton house, J.J. looked at the check to Salem Office and Supply while telling someone on the phone, "Abigail does not know that I took this, okay? She can't; she needs total deniability." He added that it was his only chance to take Theresa down. When Jennifer entered the room, J.J. hung up rather abruptly and shoved the check and paperwork into one of his textbooks on the desk. After commending J.J. for studying on his day off, Jennifer began rummaging around on the desk, looking for a file that Abigail was supposed to have left there.

Jennifer was gone when Bev arrived a little later. Bev admitted that she'd been surprised to hear from J.J., since he had been "totally M.I.A." for so long. J.J. apologized but assured Bev that he wanted to make it up to her. He admitted that he'd felt a connection between them the first time he'd seen her. Bev confided that she'd thought J.J. was cute, as well. J.J. asked if Bev would go on a date with him -- as long as they could keep things casual, since there was a good chance that he would be going to prison.

J.J. explained that there was one incident that could look bad to the sentencing judge. Bev encouraged J.J. to divulge everything. After J.J. related what had happened with Theresa, Bev declared that they had to stop what could happen to J.J. at his sentencing. J.J. pretended that an idea had just occurred to him.

Bev called Anne's office at the hospital and asked about interviewing to volunteer as a candy striper. Anne replied icily, "Honey, this is Human Resources. I handle the professional hires for the most important positions in the hospital, not volunteers." Bev mentioned her dad, Emory Walters -- a huge hospital donor who'd had a fundraiser named after him. Anne immediately changed her tune and agreed to interview Bev.

After Anne suggested that Bev meet later that afternoon, Bev hung up and told J.J., "God, that woman is such a suck-up!"

At the Kiriakis mansion, a hungover Brady asked Henderson for some aspirin. Henderson wondered why Brady wasn't at the hospital, since Brady's brother, Eric, and Nicole Walker had nearly died the night before.

Theresa found Daniel at the hospital and asked him why he hadn't shown up for dinner the previous night. Daniel admitted that he had completely forgotten. Hope arrived and overheard Theresa's petulant response, so she informed Theresa, "He was busy saving your cousin Eric's life. [...] Someone tried to kill him and Nicole."

When Brady arrived, Theresa immediately noticed how bad he looked and called him on it. Hope filled Brady in that they suspected the person who'd abducted Eric and Nicole was the same person who had helped Kristen. Brady was angry with himself for not knowing what had happened because he'd turned his phone off, but Hope pointed out that he couldn't have done anything.

Later, Theresa thanked Daniel for saving her cousin's life -- and hers. She added that she hoped they could find some time to talk about the night of her overdose. Daniel promised to call Theresa the next day to reschedule. Theresa touched Daniel familiarly on the shoulder when she saw Jennifer getting off of the elevator.

Hope returned with her tablet and showed Daniel a sketch artist's rendering of the man Daniel had seen in his office. Brady spotted it and revealed that he had talked to the man at the airport the night before when they'd been waiting for the same flight to Las Vegas. Brady emailed the itinerary to Hope so that she would have the flight number. Brady remembered that he had thought he'd recognized Eric's rosary in the man's hands.

As she headed out for a parent-teacher conference, Hope promised Brady that she would get someone to work on his lead right away. Brady grumbled that if he'd known that Eric and Nicole had gone missing, he might have been able to stop the man at the airport. Daniel urged his friend not to beat himself up.

Jennifer approached Daniel to praise him for saving Eric and Nicole, but Theresa interrupted to ask Daniel to clarify something about Eric's condition. Jennifer made an excuse and hurried out. After he'd answered Theresa's question, Daniel noted that Theresa was going to be late for the A.A. meeting -- which Maggie was also attending. Pretending to be eager to go to the meeting, Theresa left.

Brady returned to the Kiriakis mansion and informed Henderson that Nicole and Eric were going to be all right. Alone in the parlor, Brady poured himself a drink.

When Theresa arrived at the hospital A.A. meeting, she looked around the room and was dismayed to see that Maggie wasn't there. The meeting leader advised Theresa, "Something came up last minute." Theresa muttered to herself, "What's the point of being here if I can't score points with Daniel's mom?"

Theresa tried to escape before the meeting had ended -- but a clearly drunk Brady noisily entered and announced, "Sorry I'm late. My name's Brady. Let's get this party started!"

Daniel was walking by the Brady Pub when he spotted Jennifer sitting alone inside. He went inside and apologized to Jennifer for Theresa interrupting them before. Before Daniel could explain that there was nothing going on between him and Theresa, Liam showed up to meet Jennifer -- with flowers. After a moment of awkwardness, Daniel left.

When Hope arrived at St. Luke's, she advised Father Matt that Ciara missing her dad combined with the teasing about Father Eric Ciara had taken a toll on Ciara. Referencing Ciara's torn uniform, Hope admitted that she hadn't bought her daughter's story about ripping in on the monkey bars. Father Matt said that despite Hope's guess that lots of children were teasing Ciara, there was only one classmate with whom the child didn't get along.

Before Hope could find out who the other child was, Father Matt had to leave for a moment. After the priest had gone, Aiden, the father of one of Ciara's classmates, showed up. Aiden shook Hope's hand but declared, "Your daughter is out of control." He introduced himself as Aiden Jennings, Chase's father, but Hope didn't recognize either name.

"Your daughter is harassing my son nonstop," Aiden declared accusingly. Protesting that her daughter wouldn't behave that way, Hope asserted that Aiden was offensive and out of line. "Actually, Hope, he's right. Ciara has been harassing Chase," Father Matt said as he returned.

At Will and Sonny's apartment, Gabi used Sonny as a sounding board to rehearse what she was going to say to Hope. Will returned from the hospital and informed Gabi and Sonny that Eric was doing well and might even be able to go to Arianna's christening. Gabi was worried that the christening would turn into her interrogation, but Will urged her to remember that the day was all about Arianna Grace.

Gabi got ready and gave instructions to Will and Sonny for getting Arianna dressed. She thanked the guys for helping her get through "this whole Nick thing." Sonny assured Gabi, "You don't have to thank us. We're family." Gabi embraced both guys and headed out.

Abigail arrived at St. Luke's with a tray full of pastries, and she paused when she saw the Ten Commandments on the wall in the vestibule. Recalling her tryst with E.J. at the cabin, Abigail told herself that it hadn't been adultery because E.J. wasn't married. When Julie entered and spotted the pastries, she admitted that she'd sworn off sweets ever since the strange incident with the doughnuts at the book club the previous summer.

Julie confided, "I have gotten some news about Nick, and I'm more convinced than ever his disappearance is not what it seems to be." She explained that in speaking to some of the family, she'd learned that Nick had misspelled Claire's name in a message to Shawn, he hadn't asked about Jessica's knee surgery, and he'd failed to respond to Aunt Marie with the appropriate punch line to a family joke.

Abigail thought there was likely a good explanation for all of those things, but Julie pointed out that no one had actually spoken to Nick since he'd moved to New York. "I don't think it's Nick sending those texts," Julie concluded. "Why would somebody take Nick's phone and send text messages to his family?" Abigail wondered. Julie didn't know, but she was certain that something serious had happened to Nick.

After Julie had gone, Abigail reflected on her conversation at the Horton cabin with E.J. Abigail wandered into the sanctuary and recalled E.J.'s claims that he had stopped an argument between Gabi and Nick. "How?" Abigail asked herself then she hurried out of the church in search of E.J.

The sanctuary was empty when Gabi arrived a little later. Stopping before the altar, she remembered Father Eric performing her wedding to Nick. Julie entered and correctly guessed what Gabi had been thinking about. She apologized for being so hard on Gabi earlier -- but Julie was becoming more and more certain that something had happened to Nick.

On the phone at the DiMera mansion, Stefano demanded to know if "that idiot doctor" had left town yet. E.J. overheard and asked if Stefano had been talking about the man who had tried to kill Eric and Nicole -- and if that man were Dr. Chyka, the same man who'd helped Kristen drug Eric. "If you know where he is, you need to tell me where to find him," E.J. demanded.

Stefano stonewalled his son, so E.J. pointed out that one of the people whom Chyka had tried to kill was the son of the police commissioner, and there was a search underway. "Even those fools at the Salem Police Department get lucky once in a while," E.J. cautioned. Stefano declared that finding Chyka would be a mistake. "So you're protecting a subordinate? You're going to choose an employee over me -- an employee who just tried to murder two people without orders?" E.J. asked.

Stefano wanted to know whether E.J. wanted to get rid of Chyka or hand him over to the police. E.J. contended that it would send a message either way. Stefano argued that it could destroy E.J. instead of helping him with Samantha. E.J. thought that his turning Chyka in to the police would make Samantha very happy. Stefano warned that E.J. would be double-crossing his sister, but E.J. maintained that Kristen didn't deserve his consideration.

Stefano cautioned his son, "If [Chyka] is cornered, he is going to tell the police that you knew everything that Kristen did." E.J. wasn't convinced, but Stefano asserted that E.J. should stick to his original plan. "Samantha loves you. She wants to believe in you. She's going to come around -- trust me," Stefano said.

E.J. was alone when Abigail rapped on the terrace door a little later. E.J. admonished her for showing up unannounced when Samantha could have been there, but Abigail declared that she wanted to talk about what had happened to Nick. She tried to tell E.J. what Julie suspected, but he cut her off, dismissing Julie as a "drama queen" who had too much time on her hands. Pointing out that that everything Julie had said added up, Abigail asked how E.J. had convinced Nick to leave town. E.J. casually maintained that it hadn't been difficult -- but Abigail didn't believe him.

Abigail declared that she had known from the moment E.J. had shown up on Smith Island, but she had wanted to believe him -- and he had played her. "You wanted to shut me up," Abigail asserted. E.J. countered, "What happened between us did not happen so that I could shut you up." Abigail accused him of lying to Sami at that very moment, but E.J. contended that he was merely choosing not to tell Samantha about a foolish mistake.

Abigail was determined to leave and talk to Hope, but E.J. somewhat forcefully prevented Abigail from leaving and reminded her that they'd concurred that it would be a bad idea to talk to Hope. He didn't believe Abigail when she agreed not to go to Hope. "E.J., please let me go," Abigail pleaded quietly. Taking his hands off of Abigail, E.J. asked, "Are you frightened? What is it exactly that you think that I would do to you?" Abigail demanded, "What did you do to Nick? It's going to come out eventually, E.J., so you might as well just say it. Did you kill Nick?"

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Thursday, January 23, 2014
by Mike

At the hospital, Daniel checked on Eric, who was starting to feel better and wanted to know when he would be released. Daniel reported that Eric, who had rebounded amazingly well in a short amount of time, would be released later that morning. Daniel wanted to talk to Eric about something, but Eric insisted that he first had to know that Nicole was going to be all right.

Daniel assured Eric that Nicole was fine and would also be released later that morning. Daniel tried to talk to Eric about the man who had tried to kill Eric and Nicole, but Eric was more interested in seeing Nicole and getting released from the hospital in time to make it to Arianna's christening, so Daniel agreed to postpone the conversation until a later date. As Daniel started to leave, Eric seized the opportunity to thank him for everything.

Later, after Daniel left, a nun visited Eric and gave him her rosary, explaining that she had heard that his own rosary had been stolen. Eric didn't want to accept the gift, especially after learning that it had belonged to the nun's father, but she insisted and summarized that, like Eric, her father had been one of the best men she had ever known. The nun assured Eric that she had always believed in his innocence, and she hoped that he would soon be allowed to return to the church, since that was where he belonged.

Meanwhile, a nurse assured Nicole that Eric was fine and was going to be released later that day. After the nurse left, Daniel entered Nicole's room and found that Nicole had already gotten herself out of the hospital bed and changed her clothes. After conceding that she was the world's worst patient, Nicole asked for an update on the search for the mysterious doctor who had tried to kill her and Eric. Daniel told Nicole about Brady's chance encounter with the doctor at the airport, and she mused that it would have been nice if Brady had known who the doctor really was and had been able to stop the doctor from leaving Salem.

Nicole was disappointed to learn that the doctor had somehow managed to destroy all of the evidence that Daniel had gathered to prove that Eric had been drugged. Nicole was certain that Eric would agree to undergo the tests again so that Daniel could obtain more evidence, but Daniel had barely managed to find a trace of the drugs during the previous round of tests, so he wasn't optimistic about being able to find additional evidence in Eric's system if another round of tests were performed.

Daniel admitted that he had not yet been able to break the news to Eric. Nicole feared that the loss of the evidence was going to be a devastating blow to Eric's case, since she was confident that, while their interview might be enough to sway some people's opinions, the church officials were going to want tangible proof of his innocence before agreeing to reinstate him. "Uh, Eric should start thinking about a life outside of the priesthood," Daniel reluctantly confirmed.

Later, after Daniel left, Nicole ran into Eric in the waiting area, and they went to the town square so that they could talk privately about what had happened the previous night. Nicole assured Eric that they could just forget about the things that they had said to each other when they had been on the brink of death, but he insisted that he had meant everything that he had said and wasn't going to take back any of it. Eric and Nicole declared their love for each other again, but she reminded him that he also loved the church.

Eric confirmed that he had a deep devotion to the church, and he admitted that he didn't know what would happen if the church agreed to reinstate him. Eric added that he was simply certain that he didn't want to start a relationship with Nicole solely because the church had rejected him, because he believed that would be a sin against God and her. Eric said that if he ended up getting involved with Nicole, he wanted to do so for the right reasons, which meant that he needed time to think about everything and find his own path.

Eric acknowledged that he was asking a lot of Nicole, but she assured him that she understood and would be patient with him. Nicole hugged Eric and promised not to pressure him into making a decision about their future, adding that his happiness was her main concern. After thanking Nicole for understanding, Eric excused himself so that he could make it to the church in time for Arianna's christening. "How do I tell him he has practically no chance of being a priest again? I don't -- I don't want him to think that I'm trying to sway his decision, but I have to do right by him. But what's right?" Nicole quietly wondered aloud after Eric left.

At the hospital, Brady assured the Narcotics Anonymous moderator that he wasn't drunk and that he took the meetings very seriously -- much more seriously than Theresa did, in fact. Theresa tried to convince the moderator to remove Brady from the meeting, but the moderator agreed to let him stay after he promised to behave. "Hey, you were right about last night -- I was drinking a little bit. But I'm drunk as a skunk right now, so just -- just don't -- don't give me away. Shh!" Brady whispered to Theresa, oblivious to the fact that he had been noticeably slurring his speech when he had addressed the moderator earlier.

Later, while Theresa was going through the motions of making a speech about how she made sobriety her first priority every day, Brady laughed and wondered if anyone really believed that she was being sincere. The moderator asked Brady to leave, but he protested that he had not yet had a chance to share his own speech with the rest of the members. Ignoring Brady's protests, the moderator asked for someone to volunteer to get Brady home safely. Taking the hint, Brady agreed to leave, and he invited Theresa to give up her charade and join him. Theresa hesitantly agreed and assured the moderator that she would take care of Brady.

Theresa followed Brady to a secluded section of Horton Town Square, where she spotted him sitting on a bench, drowning his sorrows with a flask of liquor. Sensing an opportunity, Theresa contacted Daniel to let him know that Brady was completely wasted and needed help. After ending the call, Theresa approached Brady and encouraged him to keep drinking. When Daniel entered the area and started calling out for Theresa and Brady a short time later, she snatched the flask out of Brady's hand and loudly begged him to stop drinking. Daniel heard Theresa's voice and followed it to her and Brady's location.

Theresa helped Daniel escort Brady back to the Kiriakis mansion, where Daniel said that Brady was lucky that he hadn't given himself alcohol poisoning. The living room bar didn't have any bottles of water stocked in it, so Theresa went to look for some while Daniel stayed with Brady. Brady confessed that he had purposely missed Daniel's phone calls the previous night because he hadn't wanted to talk to Daniel. When Daniel tried to find out why Brady had chosen to ignore the calls, Brady said that wasn't important, adding that what was important was the fact that Nicole and Eric could have died as a result of Brady's decision to ignore the calls.

Daniel said that was a bit of a stretch, but Brady remained convinced that he should have known what was going on so that he could have stopped the doctor from fleeing Salem. Daniel reminded Brady that Eric and Nicole were both going to be fine, but that failed to console Brady, who sighed and admitted that he was a bad guy. Daniel tried to protest, but Brady interrupted him. "I am a bad guy, Daniel! And I -- I hate my brother so much. I hate that guy!" Brady furiously admitted.

Later, after Brady fell asleep, Daniel thanked Theresa and said that he owed her for what she had done for Brady. Theresa shrugged and innocently replied that she had helped Brady because she was just like him. Theresa said that she still wanted to talk to Daniel about her overdose eventually, since that would really help with her own recovery, so he promised to call her later so that they could reschedule their dinner plans. "Score one for Theresa," Theresa triumphantly stated after exiting the mansion.

At St. Luke's, Hope continued to defend Ciara, but Father Matt regretfully informed her that Aiden was telling the truth -- Ciara had been having a problem with Aiden's son, Chase, since the moment that Chase had transferred to St. Luke's Academy the previous November. Hope tried to get Father Matt to elaborate, but Aiden impatiently interrupted and summarized that Ciara had been making Chase's life miserable.

Aiden said that Ciara's bullying had made it even more difficult than it would have otherwise been for Chase to adjust to a new town and a new school. Father Matt apologized to Hope, knowing that it had been hard for her to hear the revelations about Ciara's behavior, but Hope sincerely stated that she was the person who owed Aiden an apology. Hope added that she had obviously been unaware of what had been going on between Ciara and Chase, but Aiden didn't understand how that was possible.

"Does your daughter not talk to you about what goes on at school? Or maybe you're just not interested. Maybe that is why she's acting out at school -- because you don't have time for her. What kind of parent are you?" Aiden wondered. Father Matt stepped in to act as a mediator, but before he could accomplish anything, he received a phone call and was forced to excuse himself. Father Matt promised to contact Hope and Aiden later that day to schedule another meeting with both of them.

Aiden started to follow Father Matt out of the office, but Hope stopped Aiden and extended a hand as she formally introduced herself, hoping that they could start over. Aiden refused to shake Hope's hand and mused that, given the circumstances, he couldn't really say that it was nice to meet her. Hope understood why Aiden was upset, but she reminded him that it wasn't unusual for kids to occasionally act out for various reasons that were often difficult for adults to fathom. Hope was hopeful that she and Aiden could work together to resolve the matter peacefully, but he wasn't willing to do so and maintained that she was probably a big part of the problem.

Aiden added that he was getting the impression that, like Ciara, Hope also believed that she could get away with saying or doing whatever she felt like saying or doing. Aiden observed that it seemed like Hope was under the impression that extending a hand and acting polite and charming would make everything better. "Oh, I don't have a problem being rude, if that's what you'd prefer," Hope countered, and Aiden replied that he would prefer for her to start acting real.

Confused, Hope reminded Aiden that she had already apologized for Ciara's behavior, and she admitted that she didn't really know what else he wanted her to do. Aiden explained that he wanted Hope to assure him that she was actually going to do something about the situation. "This is what I plan on doing -- before I condemn my daughter, I'm gonna go home, I'm gonna talk to my daughter, and I'm gonna hear her side of the story. And then, and only then, will I know how to handle this," Hope defensively replied.

"Which, translated into twenty-first century, distracted-mommy speak, means you will make excuses for her. Otherwise, you'd be forced to admit that you have been a neglectful parent," Aiden dismissively concluded. Hope shook her head and started to inform Aiden that he was a jerk, but she quickly realized that he was probably already aware of that fact. Aiden countered that he couldn't care less about Hope's opinion of his character and that he only wanted to know that she was going to keep her daughter away from his son. Aiden sauntered out of the room, and Hope sighed with frustration as she quietly reiterated that he was a jerk.

Elsewhere, in the chapel, Julie said that she was worried that something terrible had happened to Nick. Gabi remained silent as she recalled the moment when she had bashed Nick on the head with a rock, and Julie apologized, guessing that she had once again said something that had inadvertently upset Gabi. Gabi claimed that she was fine, but Julie warned that it would be pointless for Gabi to try to lie, since the truth was written all over Gabi's face. Gabi feigned ignorance, but Julie remained convinced that Gabi had something to confess.

"You still have feelings for Nick, don't you? I understand. After all, the two of you were married -- however briefly -- and when I saw you together, there was a lot of love there, so you will always have that connection. I think it's just a shame that the two of you couldn't work it out. I -- I know that that's exactly what Nick was hoping for before he left town," Julie said. Gabi tried to respond, but Julie interrupted and stressed that she wasn't trying to make Gabi feel guilty about what had happened with Nick.

"I know he made some terrible mistakes in his young life, but at his core, he's a decent guy who had a rough life. I think it's so important that we do everything we can to help him and just pray to God it's not too late," Julie added. Gabi grew increasingly nervous as she listened to Julie's comments, finally excusing herself when she could no longer stand to continue the conversation. Gabi rushed out of the chapel and ran into Sonny, Will, and Arianna in the church entryway. When Will tried to find out what was wrong with Gabi, she simply stated that she needed to get some air.

At the DiMera mansion, E.J. maintained his innocence when Abigail asked if he had killed Nick, feigning outrage and wondering how she could even suspect such a thing after everything that they had been through together. E.J. gave Abigail his word as a DiMera that he had not killed Nick. "Okay, then tell me -- why hasn't anyone heard from him since the night he left Salem? Which, coincidentally, is the same night that you stopped him from hurting -- oh, my God. Oh, my God. Was it Gabi? Did Gabi kill Nick? E.J., did Gabi kill Nick? Did Gabi kill Nick, and are you covering for her?" Abigail wondered.

Before E.J. could respond, he received a phone call from Gabi. Ignoring the call -- and concealing the caller's identity from Abigail -- E.J. laughed off Abigail's suspicions, casually pouring himself a glass of whiskey as he wondered how she could possibly suspect that Gabi, of all people, was capable of murdering someone. Abigail reasoned that Gabi could have been forced to kill Nick in self-defense if, as E.J. had previously claimed, Nick had tried to attack Gabi, but E.J. maintained that he had arrived in time to stop the argument between Nick and Gabi from getting really ugly.

E.J. theorized that Nick had been out of touch lately because Nick was embarrassed about the way that he had acted on his last day in Salem, but Abigail remained suspicious and admitted that she was starting to believe Julie's theory that someone had been posing as Nick in the recent string of text messages that his loved ones had received from his cell phone. Abigail summarized that it seemed like E.J. and Gabi were the last two people who had seen Nick alive, prompting E.J. to coolly point out that Abigail had no real reason to assume that Nick was dead.

Abigail replied that she didn't know what to assume, adding that she only knew that E.J. didn't want anyone to ask any questions about Nick and was trying to prevent her from talking to Hope about the matter. "That's -- that's why you slept with me, isn't it? Hmm? To shut me up?" Abigail suddenly realized, but E.J. insisted that he respected her and would never manipulate her in that manner. Abigail was still skeptical, but before she could question E.J. further, Harold interrupted to announce that one of E.J.'s Hong Kong associates, Mr. Shin, had just called to talk to E.J. about an urgent matter.

E.J. took the call after instructing Abigail to stay in the living room, but she ignored his instructions and rushed out of the mansion. A short time later, as E.J. was ending the call, Harold escorted Gabi into the living room and announced that she had also insisted that she needed to talk to E.J. about an urgent matter. Gabi frantically informed E.J. that Julie knew everything, but he calmly assured her that Julie didn't know anything and had simply been watching far too many whodunits lately.

E.J. added that Julie couldn't prove her suspicion that Nick wasn't the person who had been sending text messages to people from Nick's cell phone. Confused, Gabi wondered how E.J. knew about Julie's theory, but he said that wasn't important. E.J. once again calmly assured Gabi that there was no reason to worry about the nonsense that Julie was spewing. Unconvinced, Gabi continued to panic as she reminded E.J. that what Julie was saying wasn't nonsense at all -- it was actually the truth. Gabi rushed over to E.J. and wrapped her arms around him as she tearfully added that her worst nightmare was turning into a reality.

At St. Luke's, Julie admitted to Will and Sonny that she might have inadvertently upset Gabi when she had shared a theory with Gabi about Nick's disappearance. Julie conceded that her timing probably could have been better, but she added that she was getting increasingly concerned that something had happened to Nick. Will innocently pointed out that Nick had been sending people text messages, but Julie explained that she no longer believed that Nick was the person who had sent those messages. Will casually wondered who would want to pose as Nick, and Julie admitted that she didn't have an answer for that question.

Meanwhile, Julie received a phone call from Hope, and she excused herself after assuring Will and Sonny that she and Hope would get to the bottom of the mystery together. "She won't give up. It's only a matter of time till people realize that Nick is actually dead. Look, for now -- for today -- let's make this day special for us -- for our little girl. Besides, it will probably be a few more weeks before people become genuinely suspicious," Will reasoned after Julie left. As Sonny nodded in agreement, Abigail burst into the chapel and announced that she needed to talk to Julie right away.

Sonny explained that Julie had gone to see Hope earlier and that he didn't know where they were. Sonny tried to find out what Abigail wanted to talk to Julie about, but Abigail kept her answer vague. Meanwhile, Arianna woke up from her nap, so Will abruptly asked Abigail to watch Arianna for a few minutes so that he and Sonny could take care of something. Abigail tried to object, but Will and Sonny assured her that everything would be fine because Arianna loved her.

After leaving Arianna in Abigail's capable -- if not entirely willing -- hands, Will and Sonny went to the church entryway to discuss what had just happened. Will and Sonny were confident that Abigail wanted to talk to Julie about Nick, so Will quickly composed a text message to warn E.J. about the development.

At the DiMera mansion, E.J. advised Gabi to focus on Arianna's christening and trust him to handle everything else. E.J. pointed out that he had not yet let Gabi down, and she agreed and apologized for panicking. Gabi assured E.J. that she was confident that he would handle Julie the same way that he had handled Abigail. "Heaven forbid," E.J. dryly muttered. Gabi was confused, but E.J. told her to ignore his comment. E.J. received a text message from Will and quickly escorted Gabi out of the mansion, informing her that he would explain what was going on during their trip to the church.

Hope was sitting alone at a table in the pub, wondering what was going on with Ciara, when Julie arrived and shared the latest information that she had learned about Nick's disappearance. Hope conceded that Julie might have a legitimate reason to be concerned about Nick. Hope still wasn't willing to start a formal investigation into the matter, since Julie had not yet found any evidence of foul play, so she instead promised Julie that she would ask a few off-the-record questions about Nick's disappearance.

Hope confidently assured Julie that everything was probably fine. Julie advised Hope to start the investigation with Gabi, explaining that Gabi's earlier reaction to Julie's theory about Nick's disappearance had made it seem like Gabi knew more about the matter than she had been willing to reveal.

When E.J. and Gabi arrived at the church, Will and Sonny quickly explained what was going on. Gabi was worried about the fact that Julie had left the church to meet Hope somewhere, but E.J. still wasn't concerned about Julie, who had nothing more than a theory to share with Hope. E.J. said that Abigail was the primary concern, and he assured the group that he would talk to her privately and take care of the situation.

After E.J. entered the chapel, Will and Sonny tried to get Gabi to stay calm, but she snapped that she was going to lose her mind if one more person gave her that advice. Sonny suggested that he and Will could take Gabi outside so that she could get some fresh air, but she abruptly walked away from them, stating that she would prefer to go outside alone. Will wondered if Sonny believed that E.J. would be able to convince Abigail to keep her mouth shut, and Sonny shrugged unknowingly. Meanwhile, Hope and Julie arrived, and Julie immediately asked Will where Abigail was, explaining that she had seen Abigail's car parked outside.

In the chapel, E.J. approached Abigail, who was still holding Arianna. E.J. mused that Arianna was beautiful and innocent, and Abigail countered that Arianna was the opposite of them. "You know, the day that I came to Smith Island, I followed you there to stop you from talking to Hope about Nick, but that's not why I slept with you. I slept with you because I couldn't stop myself," E.J. quietly assured Abigail as he interacted with Arianna.

Abigail replied that even if E.J. were telling the truth and he and Gabi had nothing to hide, Hope still needed to know everything that Abigail knew about the events that had led to Nick's departure from Salem, since Nick was a part of their family. "Well, I understand that, and I admire it, but today is this little girl's special day, and I don't think that you want to ruin it for her or her parents, so if you wish to say something to Hope, why don't you wait until after the christening -- for me, okay?" E.J. sweetly reasoned.

Before Abigail could respond, Hope and Julie entered the chapel.

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Friday, January 24, 2014

At the Brady Pub, Caroline bragged to Roman that she had cleaned the fryers and emptied the grease traps for the first time since Nick had left. Roman reminded his mother that Arianna's christening was that day. Caroline was upset with herself for forgetting something as important as her great-great granddaughter's christening, but Roman urged her not to be too hard on herself.

At the Horton house, Jennifer complimented J.J., who was all dressed up for the christening. J.J. seemed worried about his sentencing, but Jennifer praised him for being a "model citizen." J.J. urged his mom to let him handle things if Theresa showed up at the christening and bothered Jennifer or Abigail. Jennifer assured him that Theresa wouldn't be there because she was at work.

Rafe ran into Lucas at Club TBD before they headed over to St. Luke's for Arianna's christening. "Ready for the big day, Grandpa?" Rafe teased Lucas, who admitted that he was a sucker for the little girl. While Rafe and Lucas were chatting, Rafe got a text message from Jordan, letting him know that she couldn't be at the christening because she had to work.

Lucas tried to encourage Rafe that Jordan might show up at the reception afterwards. Rafe asked if Sheryl would be at the christening, but Lucas maintained that their relationship was strictly professional. Rafe was just grateful that Jordan finally had a friend in town, since she'd always buried herself in her work.

At the hospital, Marlena asked Eric if he were all right to attend the christening. Eric assured her that the doctors had said that he and Nicole were both fine. "I guess this ordeal was quite a bonding experience for the two of you," Marlena remarked, but Eric refused to discuss Nicole -- or his feelings. Marlena asked if Eric were really up to returning to St. Luke's -- the first time he'd been back. "I guess we'll find out," Eric said.

In the vestibule at St. Luke's, Sonny tried to reassure Will that the day would be all about Arianna. "Yeah, as long as Ari's mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother don't get arrested for murder, it'll be amazing," Will noted wryly.

In the chapel, E.J. tried to persuade Abigail not to talk to Hope until after Arianna's christening. Before Abigail could reply, Hope and Julie entered. E.J. covered that he had arrived early to see Arianna and congratulate Abigail. Julie demanded to know where Gabi was, but Hope stated calmly that she wanted to ask Gabi a few questions before the ceremony. Abigail tried to remain calm while Julie complained that Gabi had been jumpy and evasive when asked what had happened between her and Nick before he'd left town.

Hope questioned whether anything about Nick's text messages had seemed odd to Abigail. Abigail said that she hadn't noticed anything, but she promised to double-check her phone after the ceremony. Julie headed out to try to reach Doug. As Abigail wheeled Arianna's stroller out to return the tot to her daddies, she cautioned E.J. that she still planned to talk to Hope after the christening.

In the vestibule, Abigail informed Will and Sonny that Julie was worried about Nick. Will calmly wrote Julie's theories off as crazy, but Abigail informed the guys that Hope and Julie thought that something had happened to Nick. Abigail thought that since Gabi had seen Nick the night he'd left town, Gabi might be able to shed some light on what had happened to him. Abigail wondered where Gabi was -- as did Will, who decided to send Gabi a message to see if she were on her way back.

In Horton Square on her way to the church, Sami spotted Kate trying to calm Gabi down. When Sami asked what was going on, Gabi anxiously explained that Julie and the Horton family had figured out that the text messages they'd been getting didn't sound like Nick -- and Julie had gone to find Hope. Kate and Sami led Gabi to the park outside the square to try to talk her down. Gabi reminded them that Julie had "a kick-ass detective for a sister" who would find someone who had seen Gabi arguing with Nick in the square the night he'd disappeared.

Kate and Sami pointed out that Nick hadn't died in the square, and E.J.'s people had cleared the area around the river of evidence. After praising E.J. for being a "great guy," Gabi revealed that E.J. was at the church, trying to stop Abigail from talking to Hope. While Kate and Sami were discussing how strange it was that the Hortons were suddenly concerned about Nick, Gabi anxiously announced that she'd just gotten a text message from Will that Hope wanted to question her about Nick.

Kate and Sami urged a panicked Gabi to just stick to the story, but Gabi wasn't sure which story they were talking about. Sami and Kate said that Gabi should use E.J.'s story, since that was the one that Abigail knew about, and it was the one that Gabi had rehearsed. Gabi was confident about those details but nervous about everything else. "Game face," Sami said encouragingly. Gabi smiled weakly. "Let's go get that baby christened!" Kate said. The three women headed for the church.

As soon as Kate, Gabi, and Sami arrived at the church, Will and Gabi headed off to get Arianna changed into her christening gown. Sami declared that she was thrilled that Abigail would be Arianna's godmother so the little one would have such a great role model. Clearly uncomfortable with Sami's praise, Abigail couldn't do anything but stammer. Julie returned and announced ruefully that Doug was stuck in Miami.

When Julie seemed determined to seek out Gabi to question her, Sami cheerfully explained where Gabi had gone -- and pointedly noted that the day was supposed to be all about Arianna.

In a private room, Gabi told Will that of all the crazy things she'd done in her life, the one mistake she would never regret was the night they'd made Arianna. "She's a miracle, and it's a miracle to me that my daughter's father isn't just the best dad that she could have; he's my best friend, too," Gabi declared emotionally, embracing Will. As the young parents held their daughter together, Will showed Gabi a picture of Arianna on his phone -- which Arianna grabbed for. "You did good, Gabi," a beaming Will reassured her. "We did," Gabi corrected him.

In the sanctuary, Hope questioned why E.J. had arrived at the church so early. E.J. explained that he was always happy for an excuse to shut off his phone for a bit of solitude and quiet contemplation. Hope wondered what might be appropriate for E.J. to contemplate in a church. "Well, I certainly don't think that grilling a young mother about her ex-husband on the day of her daughter's christening is appropriate in a church, Hope -- especially not when we remember what happened the last time he and Gabi were here," E.J. said.

Hope wondered when E.J. had become so protective of Gabi. E.J. maintained that he had been fond of Gabriella since the day she and Will had noticed the cancer that had almost cost Johnny his life. Hope admitted that she'd forgotten about that. "She's the mother of William's child, Hope, Samantha's grandchild -- so do not be surprised that I take umbrage with you interrogating her," E.J. said. He wondered why Julie was so suspicious of Gabi feeling uncomfortable discussing Nick.

E.J. declared, "Look, I don't know what kind of trouble Mr. Fallon has gotten himself into, and frankly, I don't care. And really, I don't think you should, either. I saw the damage that boy did to Gabi and William, and I don't think it's fair that he gets to ruin this day for their daughter." As Sami and Kate entered, Sami chimed in that she agreed with E.J., because the day should be about Arianna.

Later, after Hope and Julie had taken their seats in a pew, Jennifer arrived and revealed that Maggie and Brady were getting a bug and wouldn't attend so as not to expose the baby. Against Hope's wishes, Julie voiced her suspicions about Nick to Jennifer.

Near the altar, Sami and Kate observed the interaction between Hope, Julie, and Jennifer, and joked about the numerous cruises that Julie had been on. They both expressed optimism that everything would be all right -- if only Gabi could stay strong.

Lucas and Rafe arrived together, and Sonny greeted them in the vestibule. "I sure am glad you're Ari's godfather," Lucas told Sonny, adding with a sly grin, "Who knows? Maybe someday soon you'll have a ceremony of your own, you and Will."

Sami was pleasantly surprised when Rafe walked into the chapel, using just a cane. Kate asked about Jordan, but Rafe said that Jordan was at work. When Sami made a remark about Jordan being bossy, Rafe pointed out that it was probably the reason he was walking. After Rafe took a seat, Kate remarked to Sami, "You just called his new girlfriend 'bossy.' Sometimes I really like you. It's so disorienting."

Caroline, Roman, and Eric all arrived around the same time. After Roman led Caroline into the chapel, Eric paused for a moment then crossed himself before entering. Julie made a somewhat snide comment to Hope. Hope hissed, "Stop! All day I'm going to have to keep saying this to you about everything?"

Sami was pleased to see her twin looking so much healthier than the last time she'd seen him. Sonny grabbed J.J. so the two of them could move their cars, as there was a truck trying to get past on its way to the school. Remarking that Abigail had the "DiMera scowl," Lucas guessed that she was thinking about the last time she and Chad had been in the church together. "Don't worry, Abigail. You're going to find somebody -- someone who deserves you," Lucas reassured his niece.

When Rafe wandered back into the vestibule, Sonny somewhat awkwardly broached the subject of whether it was all right with Rafe that Sonny was the baby's godfather. Rafe emphasized that he thought it was a great idea. Will and Gabi entered just then with Arianna in her cap and christening gown. "Would you look at the princess!" Rafe exclaimed. He informed his sister that he'd just spoken to their mother. The group headed inside.

Abigail held Arianna while a beaming Sonny stood next to them, as Father Matt began the christening ceremony. When Father Matt asked, the godparents happily accepted their duties. Abigail stated that she wanted to be a role model and someone the little girl could look up to. "I hope that I can show her what a gift this family truly is," Abigail said. Sonny declared that he would always share a special bond with Arianna Grace, and he intended to be a part of her life as long as he lived.

Sonny promised to be with Arianna through her life's challenges and to love and care for her as if she were his own daughter. "Because, in my heart, she already is," Sonny said. When Father Matt held Arianna over the baptismal font and poured water over her head, Gabi stiffened as the water splashed back into the basin, remembering Nick being pulled into the river. Recognizing what Gabi was feeling, Will grabbed her hand reassuringly.

Afterwards, Gabi thanked the congregation for attending and for ensuring that her and Will's daughter would have an amazing life, even if something were to happen to them. Will invited everyone to join them for a reception at the DiMera mansion. As people began milling about, Rafe reassured his sister that he would always be there for Arianna -- plus their sister would always take care of the little one.

Father Matt asked how it felt for Eric to be there. Eric admitted that it felt strange to watch a rite that he'd hoped to perform, but he knew that Arianna couldn't be in better hands. Eric asked Father Matt if they could meet later.

E.J. informed Kate and Sami that Abigail still wanted to talk to Hope -- but he assured them that Abigail couldn't hurt them. "You shut her up once; just do it again," Kate suggested. E.J. resisted, but he eventually agreed to try talking to Abigail again.

Jennifer reiterated Rafe's earlier teasing by referring to Lucas as "Grandpa." She advised her brother that she had to get back to work and J.J. had to study, but they all promised to get together soon.

E.J. approached Abigail in the chapel and asked if they could speak privately. Abigail reluctantly followed him out.

As the crowd dispersed, Julie observed to Hope, "The party seems to be breaking up. Maybe this is a good time to get Gabi." Hope admonished Julie "We're not going to get Gabi -- and not right now." Hope wanted to speak to Abigail first but realized that Gabi had disappeared.

In private, E.J. cautioned Abigail that by telling Hope what little she knew, Abigail would be forcing Gabi to relive a trauma and making Gabi look guilty when she'd done nothing. Abigail pointed out that Nick was missing -- and Gabi could know something that might help without even realizing it. When Abigail started to leave, E.J. quietly asked her not to go. "Why? So you can sleep with me again to keep me quiet?" Abigail countered.

"I've already made it very clear to you that I didn't sleep with you to keep you quiet, Abigail -- but I'm certainly beginning to wonder why it is that you slept with me," E.J. said. Abigail claimed that E.J.'s charms had gotten to her just as they would have any other woman. She stated her belief that he wanted something, and he would do whatever it took to get it.

"Do you really think that everything that I've done, everything that we shared, that for all this time I manipulated this entire situation because one day I'd break up a fight between Gabi and Nick and I'd need you to keep quiet about it?" E.J. asked. Seeming to acknowledge that it was a ridiculous idea, Abigail tried to argue with E.J., but she couldn't complete the thought and ran, flustered, from the room. E.J. followed a moment later.

Sami was sitting in a pew, bouncing Arianna on her knee while Gabi watched, when Lucas demanded equal time with his granddaughter. Putting the baby in his lap, Lucas cuddled and kissed her. Sami and Lucas grinned at little Arianna then turned their beaming faces toward their son. "What?" Will asked. Lucas and Sami declared that they were proud of their son. After Lucas handed Arianna back over to her mommy, he had to leave for a business meeting.

Watching as Julie hovered nearby, Gabi fretted, "[She's] ready to pounce the minute I'm alone." Kate assured Gabi that they wouldn't leave her alone. When the group observed an agitated Abigail entering the chapel, Kate remarked, "That doesn't look good."

Just as Abigail approached Hope to discuss what she knew, the doors at the back of the sanctuary opened -- and Nick entered. "Oh, my God!" Gabi gasped. After Nick shut the doors behind himself, he turned to the stunned group inside. "Sorry, am I interrupting?" Nick asked.

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