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Monday, May 5, 2014
by Mike

Hope met with Aiden in the town square to continue to plan the church's summer gala. Aiden had heard about what had happened to Jennifer and Daniel the previous night, and he asked Hope to let the couple know that he was glad that they were all right. Aiden said that, given the circumstances, he would understand if Hope wanted to reschedule their meeting, but she dismissed the offer.

Hope reported that Jennifer had dated Liam and had never suspected that he was "deranged," so the ordeal had left Jennifer understandably shaken. "You think you're a good judge of character, and -- well, it's just, you know, sometimes it's really hard to accept that you don't always know people the way you think you do," Hope mused, and Aiden agreed.

After Hope and Aiden booked the caterers and discussed some other plans for the gala, she abruptly excused herself. Hope explained that she needed to save Roman from Ciara, who had the day off from school due to a Parent-Teacher Association conference and had asked to spend part of it with her uncle, not understanding that he was a very busy man.

Aiden protested that Hope couldn't leave yet, since they still had a lot of work to do. Hope suspected that Aiden was stalling for some reason, so he decided to try a different approach, pretending that he was just reluctant to admit that he actually enjoyed spending time with her. "Now I know you're lying," Hope replied with a laugh before walking away. Aiden quickly grabbed his belongings and chased after Hope.

At the Brady Pub, Roman observed that Ciara had barely touched her bowl of macaroni and cheese. Roman offered to order something else for Ciara, but she shook her head to silently decline the offer. Roman wondered if something was wrong, and when Ciara nodded to confirm his suspicion, he encouraged her to confide in him.

"You love me, right, Uncle Roman?" Ciara quietly asked. Roman wondered what kind of question that was. Without waiting for a response, Roman confirmed that he loved Ciara very much. "Then you have to help me, or else everything's going to be ruined," Ciara dramatically stated.

After hearing Ciara's request, Roman apologetically insisted that he couldn't take Mrs. Van Hopper to the gala. Ciara gave Roman her best puppy-dog-eyed expression and reminded him that he had previously promised that he would help her because he loved her. Ciara begged Roman not to let her down. Roman told Ciara that he didn't want to let her down, but he confidently added that her school would be just fine without his attendance at the gala. "Uncle Roman, why are you being so mean? I miss my daddy so much, and all I have is you," Ciara replied before giving Roman another round of the puppy-dog-eyed expression she had perfected.

Roman protested that Ciara wasn't being fair, but she continued to pout, so he eventually agreed to do what she had asked -- just as Hope arrived and wondered what was going on. Roman explained that he had just agreed to take Giselle Van Hopper to the gala. Hope was stunned, but Roman reasoned that it wasn't a big deal, since it was a one-night-only event. Ciara reminded Roman that it was also for a wonderful cause. Roman smiled and told Ciara that she was lucky that he was crazy about her, and she somewhat dryly replied that she loved him, too. Roman stood to leave, and Hope gave him a hug and thanked him for agreeing to help out.

After Roman left, Hope took a seat next to Ciara and wondered what had just happened. Ciara shrugged and remained silent, and as Hope protested that Ciara's answer wasn't a real answer, Aiden entered the pub and stressed that Ciara wasn't responsible for what had happened. "Good going, big mouth," Ciara disappointedly stated as she glared at Aiden.

Ciara went to the kitchen to say hello to Caroline, leaving Aiden alone with Hope. Aiden claimed that the whole thing had been his idea, and he apologized for getting Ciara involved, admitting that he never should have promised her a reward for helping him. Confused, Hope asked Aiden to elaborate, so he revealed that he had promised Ciara the box of chocolates and the watch that he had originally planned to bribe Gisele with. Hope assumed that Aiden had approached Ciara with the offer, but he clarified that Ciara had actually offered to help after overhearing his conversation with Hope the previous day.

Aiden conceded that he shouldn't have accepted Ciara's offer. Aiden explained that he was simply worried about the gala falling apart, and he reminded Hope that Ciara could be unbelievably persuasive. "Okay, look, you have every right to be angry with me, if not thoroughly disgusted, okay? Especially since I was so judgmental of your parenting skills when we first met that -- I'm probably making this a lot worse right now, aren't I?" Aiden guessed, shutting up as Hope nodded in agreement.

Hope admitted that she appreciated the fact that Aiden had taken responsibility for his actions. Before Hope could continue, she received a text message from Gisele, who confirmed that she would be attending the gala with Roman -- and her coveted artwork. Later, at the town square, Hope made it clear that she didn't approve of what Ciara and Aiden had done. After Ciara confirmed that she understood, Hope conceded that her daughter and Aiden had been acting in the name of a good cause. Ciara wondered if that meant that she wasn't in trouble, and Hope confirmed that Aiden was taking full responsibility for the scheme.

Hope stressed that she never again wanted to see Ciara use her "sad face" on Roman -- or anyone else, for that matter. "Okay. So do I get my chocolate and watch now?" Ciara asked. Hope initially refused the request, but Aiden gave her his own puppy-dog-eyed expression and reminded her that a promise was a promise, so she eventually agreed to let Ciara have one piece of chocolate.

Later, as the group enjoyed their allotted chocolates, Hope reminded Aiden about their earlier conversation -- the one about thinking certain things about a person and later figuring out that those things were wrong. "Sometimes, that's not always such a terrible thing. Sometimes, people can surprise you -- in a good way," Hope mused, and Aiden confirmed that he knew exactly what she was talking about.

In the park, Jordan was shocked and outraged to realize that Kate had broken into and searched Jordan's apartment. "Oh! What are you gonna do about it? Are you gonna run to the police? Is that what you're gonna do? How do you think Rafe is gonna feel about it when he finds out that you're not the girl he thought you were? How do you think that's gonna work out for you, huh?" Kate wondered, prompting Jordan to angrily slap her.

Kate promised that Jordan would live to regret slapping her, and Jordan countered that Kate would live to regret being "such a nosy bitch." Jordan lunged at Kate, and after a brief struggle, Kate managed to push Jordan away. Jordan wasn't ready to stop fighting, but Kate threatened to call Rafe and tell him everything unless Jordan calmed down right away.

Jordan shrugged and reasoned that Kate couldn't tell Rafe everything because Kate didn't actually know anything. Kate countered that she knew that Jordan had toted a box of fake identification cards all the way from Birmingham -- or wherever Jordan was really from. Kate was fairly certain that Jordan would have eventually used those fake identification cards if Jordan's "little lovefest" with Rafe hadn't derailed her plans.

Jordan said that Kate was "deranged," and she promised that she wouldn't let Kate get away with breaking into Jordan's apartment. Kate retrieved her cell phone from her purse and offered to call Rafe herself so that Jordan could report the crime to him. Jordan remained silent, so Kate tossed the phone aside and pointed out that she had warned that she wouldn't let Jordan hurt the people Kate cared about.

Jordan argued that Kate was the person who was hurting due to being in love with a man who didn't feel the same way about her. Kate clarified that Rafe was her friend, and she refused to let Jordan hurt him. "That is not what I'm doing! That's not what I'm doing, but you're too busy blaming me for Rafe falling out of love with you, when -- newsflash -- he was never in love with you!" Jordan countered.

"You're really good at changing the subject, aren't you? Really, really good at that. But if you're so harmless, and you're so innocent, then why do you have more aliases than P. Diddy?" Kate asked. Jordan sighed and wondered if Kate had ever had a part -- or perhaps a dozen parts -- of her own life that she had needed to put behind her. Kate remained silent, listening disinterestedly as she checked her makeup and fixed her hair. Jordan guessed that Kate hadn't let those regrettable parts of her own life prevent her from living her life, pursuing a career, and falling in love. "My past is exactly that -- it's my past, and it has no bearing on who I am now," Jordan concluded.

"Okay. What about the person you're going to be a week from now? Or a year from now? You don't think that could come back and bite you -- and Rafe? You see, if it's that terrible that you can't talk about it, it's never gonna go away. Take it from someone who knows," Kate advised as she turned her attention back to Jordan. Jordan admitted that Rafe was the only man she had ever loved, and she insisted that she would never hurt him. Kate sarcastically agreed, skeptically summarizing that Jordan was only lying to Rafe to spare him the pain of learning that she wasn't who she claimed to be.

Jordan protested that Kate didn't know the whole story. "Then tell me! Tell him! But no, you're not gonna do that. You're not gonna do that, 'cause it's bad. It's real bad. And don't tell me that I have no idea what I'm talking about, because I am gonna find out, and then I'll have the information to prove beyond a doubt that you are both a liar and a fraud. I'll be able to prove that to Rafe, and then it will be over. So...enjoy it while you can, Jordan -- Joan. Enjoy it," Kate advised before walking away.

At Club TBD, Abigail uttered Ben's name when she thanked him for serving her a cup of coffee. After Ben left, Sami wondered if Abigail knew him. Abigail confirmed that she had crossed paths with Ben on a few occasions, mainly at the club. Sami casually revealed that she had seen Ben having "an awkward, tense conversation" with Jordan a few weeks earlier.

Meanwhile, Maggie arrived and greeted Abigail, who had arranged the meeting earlier via a text message. Maggie was surprised to see Sami, who explained that she and Abigail needed Maggie's help with Nick. Sami acknowledged that, considering what had happened to Jennifer and Daniel the previous night, it probably wasn't the best time to ask Maggie for help.

When Maggie confirmed the suspicion, Sami quickly added that, while Daniel and Jennifer were thankfully going to be okay, her own family might not be as lucky, since Nick had decided to involve himself in Will and Gabi's pursuit of a custody agreement for Arianna. "No matter how many times Nick claims that he has changed, he is still the same old Nick. He is trying to keep Will away from his own daughter," Sami summarized.

Abigail explained that Nick had tricked her into giving him the name of a good lawyer -- Aiden Jennings, whose name Maggie recognized because he had handled J.J.'s sentencing hearing. Sami reported that Aiden had drafted a custody agreement for Gabi that only allowed Will to see Arianna every other weekend. Confused, Maggie said that she had been under the impression that Will and Gabi had been getting along well with each other.

"Oh, they are. Nick, on the other hand -- well, I'm sure that he's the one pressing for this, and he convinced Gabi that this is just a lawyer's move -- a starting point in the negotiations. And, of course, Gabi believes whatever Nick tells her," Sami replied. Abigail said that she had already tried to reason with Nick herself, and Sami clarified that everyone who was involved had already tried to reason with him.

Sami hoped that Maggie could get through to Nick and convince him that he was making a mistake, since no one else had been able to do so. Maggie nodded and asked the women to wish her luck. As Maggie stood to leave, Sami warned that it would be best if Nick didn't know that Sami was the one who had asked for Maggie's help. "And why would I tell him that? I don't want the conversation to be over before it starts," Maggie replied.

After Maggie left, Sami thanked Abigail for the help. Sami admitted that she didn't have many -- any -- friends, and she said that it was nice to see that Abigail cared about Will and was willing to do what she could to help him. Sami added that she was glad that Abigail was someone she could count on. Abigail insisted that she hadn't really done that much, but Sami disagreed.

Changing the subject, Sami pointed out that her and E.J.'s wedding date was quickly approaching, and she wondered if Abigail would be willing to give her another art lesson before the big day. Abigail agreed, and Sami thanked her again before exiting the club. Abigail remained stationary for a few moments, silently considering what Sami had just said, until Ben interrupted to see if Abigail needed anything else. Abigail declined the offer and wondered if she could ask Ben a question.

When Ben nodded, Abigail wondered how he knew Jordan Ridgeway. Abigail reported that one of her friends had recently seen Ben talking to Jordan, which Abigail thought was surprising, since she had been under the impression that he had just moved to Salem and hadn't really met many people yet. Ben shrugged and replied that Jordan was a regular customer. Suspecting that there might be more to the story, Abigail wondered if Ben had gone on a date with Jordan at some point.

Ben shook his head, and Abigail apologetically acknowledged that the situation was none of her business. Abigail explained that Jordan was a friend of hers -- a friend who was dating someone at that time. Ben claimed that he hadn't known about Jordan's relationship but also didn't care, since she was just someone he had talked to a few times in the past. Before Abigail could ask any additional questions, Ben quickly excused himself to take care of some customers who were ready to place an order. Abigail watched suspiciously as Ben walked away.

Later, after Abigail left, Jordan entered the club and told Ben that they needed to leave Salem right away because someone had discovered the fake identification cards. Ben didn't seem fazed, and he assured Jordan that no one would be able to figure out anything from those items alone. Jordan insisted that she and Ben couldn't take that risk, but he argued that people would start asking questions if they left -- people like Rafe, who was a cop. Ben reasoned that he and Jordan had worked too hard to cover their tracks and that they needed to stay right where they were.

Jordan protested that the person who had found the fake identification cards could say something about them to Rafe. "Then you're just gonna have to deal with it, okay? But Jordan, the running has gotta stop. I -- I had to lie again today. I hate that. I'm not leaving, okay? And neither should you," Ben insisted before abruptly excusing himself so that he could get back to work.

In Will and Sonny's apartment, Rafe refused to believe Gabi's claim that she did indeed want to limit Will's contact with Arianna to every other weekend. "What the hell has Nick done to you?" Rafe asked, turning Gabi around to face him. Rafe firmly stated that, while he loved and supported Gabi, it simply wasn't right for her to keep Arianna away from Will -- or Sonny, for that matter.

Gabi claimed that she wasn't trying to do that, adding that the custody agreement was just a precaution. Gabi reported that Will was the one who had asked for a formal custody agreement in order to protect himself, and she argued that she was simply trying to protect herself, as well. Gabi stressed that she wanted Will and Sonny to see Arianna as often as they desired, and she assured Rafe that she would never, ever stop them from doing so. "Mm-hmm. Even if Nick demanded it?" Rafe skeptically asked.

Rafe wondered when Gabi had been planning to tell him about the custody agreement. When Gabi remained silent, Rafe theorized that she had been too ashamed to tell him because she knew, deep down, that the whole thing was wrong. Gabi insisted that it wasn't wrong for her to do whatever she had to do to ensure that she would never be separated from her daughter.

Rafe dismissed Gabi's concerns, certain that Will would never do such a thing to her. Gabi argued that Rafe couldn't predict the future, but he assured her that, at the very least, a judge would never keep Arianna away from Gabi. "You don't understand! I am talking about them keeping me away from her!" Gabi vaguely clarified. Rafe wondered who Gabi was talking about, but she refused to elaborate. Rafe guessed that Nick had threatened Gabi, but she said that things were fine between her and Nick and that she wanted to keep it that way.

Rafe wasn't satisfied with that answer, since he was certain that something wasn't right. Rafe started to leave, vowing to beat the answers out of Nick if necessary, but Gabi stopped her brother and told him to leave Nick alone. "Any time anybody ever talks to him, they just make it worse! Can't you see that? Can you please -- can you just listen? If you want to help me -- if you love me, if you love Arianna -- please, just stay out of this! Please, promise me, okay? Just promise me that you're gonna stay out of this, that you're not gonna talk to Nick. Promise me, please," Gabi frantically begged Rafe as Arianna woke up and started to cry.

Rafe reluctantly agreed to comply with Gabi's request -- for a while, at least -- and he left the apartment after she went to check on Arianna. Later, Gabi emerged from her bedroom with Arianna. "I promise, my little cutie -- I will never, ever keep you from your daddy, okay? Mommy just has to fix things with Uncle Nick. You know he loves you very much, huh? Both of us. And, in time, I know that I can learn to care for him...and maybe even love him. Look, I don't have a choice. No one is gonna take me away from my little girl," Gabi vowed as she eyed the engraved heart-shaped crystal Nick had given her earlier.

Kate ran into Rafe outside the Brady Pub, and she quickly realized that he had heard about the custody agreement. Rafe said that he had tried to talk some sense into Gabi earlier. Kate guessed that the conversation hadn't gone well. Rafe promised that he wouldn't give up, and he assured Kate that he would do whatever he had to do to save his sister from Nick.

Kate and Rafe entered the pub and claimed a table near the bar so that they could continue their discussion. Meanwhile, Jordan entered the pub and groaned when she realized that Rafe was with Kate. Jordan slowly circled the pub, making her way toward Kate and Rafe, who hadn't noticed her presence. Rafe told Kate that he wasn't sure if Gabi had truly fallen for Nick again or if she was just scared to death. Rafe vaguely added that he had previously been under the impression that Gabi had understood. Confused, Kate asked Rafe to clarify his statement. "That it was all based on a lie," Rafe elaborated -- just as Jordan stepped into earshot.

In Nick's office at Mad World, Nick asked E.J. where Percy was. "I'm afraid your assistant has been terminated. I can see why you were so eager to hire him. He's a very agreeable fellow, and a veritable fount of useful information. Whatever will you do without him?" E.J. replied. Nick promptly placed a phone call to Percy's cell phone to let the man know that he didn't have to take orders from E.J.

"Greetings," E.J. said when he answered Percy's phone. As Nick ended the call, E.J. revealed that, during an earlier conversation, Percy had confirmed that he had taken an incriminating photograph of E.J. and Abigail and delivered it to the DiMera mansion at Nick's request. Nick smiled smugly and said that he had been wondering when E.J. would figure that out, adding that he was disappointed that it had taken as long as it had.

E.J. wondered if Nick believed that they were playing some sort of game. E.J. pointed out that Sami or one of their children could have found that photograph. "That was kind of the point," Nick replied. E.J. started to call Nick a "stupid, stupid man," but Nick interrupted and implied that E.J. was the stupid one for sleeping with Abigail. Nick laughed as he guessed that E.J. hadn't been thinking at that particular time.

Unamused, E.J. warned Nick to shut up. "Oh, no. You don't get to tell me what to do. You brought this on yourself. I told you to keep Sami in line, and she is still trying to turn Gabi against me. Clearly, you needed another reminder about who has the power here -- and not just over Sami and Kate and Will and Sonny, but over you, too, E.J.," Nick replied.

"You think you have the power here? That would be a serious miscalculation on your part, Mr. Fallon -- one that will cost you dearly," E.J. countered. Unfazed, Nick confidently guessed that if Sami ever found out that E.J. had "ravished" Abigail in the Horton cabin, that would be one betrayal that Sami would never be able to forgive. "Do you want to make it to the altar this time? Do you want to continue to live a life with your children? Tell me again that I don't have any power over you," Nick smugly concluded.

E.J. warned that Nick would be very, very sorry if even a single word about the matter ever made it back to Sami, but Nick just laughed and wondered if that "generic" threat was the best one E.J. had in his arsenal. E.J. promised that Nick couldn't even begin to imagine what E.J. could do to him. "What's the worst you can do to me, E.J. -- kill me? We both know that you're not gonna kill me, E.J., because that's not who you are anymore. I don't know if it was having kids, falling in love...but I think you're soft now. I don't think you have it in you anymore," Nick dismissively replied.

E.J. wondered if Nick was willing to bet his own life on that theory. Ignoring the question, Nick guessed that E.J. hadn't actually killed Percy but had instead opted to scare the birdwatcher into submission and send him away. "Mr. Ruggles was a lackey. I can assure you I will not be so kindhearted when it comes to meting out your punishment," E.J. warned.

"There is nothing -- nothing -- that you could do to me that would even begin to compare to the hell that I went through in prison, so spare me your empty threats, 'cause I'm not afraid of you. You see, my threats aren't empty, so you should be afraid of me. You'd be wise to remember that," Nick calmly replied before exiting the office, leaving E.J. behind.

Later, Nick went to the Kiriakis mansion to see Maggie, who hugged him as he apologized for neglecting to visit her more often. Nick said that his job was keeping him busy, and when Maggie asked him how things were going at work, he vaguely replied that he'd had a hard day at the office but was confident that the following day would be better. Maggie hoped that Nick wasn't forgetting to set aside some time to socialize and live a little.

Nick reported that things in his personal life couldn't be better than they already were. Maggie guessed that Nick was talking about his relationship with Gabi, and he confirmed the suspicion. Nick braced himself for a lecture, but Maggie assured him that she wasn't planning to give him one, although she admitted that she was concerned. "And who told you [that] you should be concerned?" Nick wondered.

Maggie said that she was aware that Nick had gotten involved in Will and Gabi's pursuit of a custody agreement for Arianna. Nick innocently explained that he had simply been trying to help Gabi. Maggie wondered why Nick hadn't asked her to contact one of the lawyers at Mickey's old law firm, but Nick ignored the question.

"Let me guess -- Abigail told you that I tricked her into recommending a lawyer. Is that right? Poor, little, sweet, innocent Abigail is beside herself that I'm attacking poor, sweet, innocent Will. Never mind the fact that I'm her cousin, too, right? But I'm not like her. I'm not like her, or -- or Will, or any of the other perfect Hortons. Why should I be surprised that no one's on my side?" Nick complained.

Maggie told Nick that she cared about him. "Yeah, and you all tried really hard to get in touch with me, and you all really missed me when I was in New York -- I get it. Look, I understand why everybody in this family and everybody in this town was glad when I left Salem, okay? I -- I could sprout wings now, and I would still be the screw-up; I would still be the black sheep. But Abigail and Will -- they're perfect," Nick continued to complain.

Maggie clarified that Will and Abigail weren't perfect. "You're right -- they're not perfect, but you wouldn't know it from talking to people in this town. J.J. gets caught stealing drugs, and everybody's all, 'Oh, poor J.J. His -- his father died. It wasn't his fault. He deserves a second chance.' But not -- not me. Not me," Nick whined. Maggie tearfully reminded Nick that he had also been given a second chance, and she added that she simply wanted to see him make the very most out of it. Nick dismissively replied that he had hurt Melanie, who would always be more important to Maggie because she was Maggie's granddaughter. Nick added that Julie was only rooting for him because she couldn't resist a lost cause.

Maggie stressed that Nick wasn't a lost cause. "I was. I was when I -- when I first got to Salem. I let a lot of people use me and abuse me. But not anymore. That's not who I am anymore. And you want to know what changed me? Love. I love Gabi, and she loves me back. And I swear to you, Aunt Maggie, nobody is gonna get in the way this time of us being together. And I don't care what I have to do, but I'm going to make sure that I get...to have the life that I've always wanted," Nick vowed before storming out of the mansion, ignoring Maggie's tearful attempt to stop him.

Later, Nick tracked Abigail down in a secluded section of Horton Town Square. "You couldn't stay out of it, could you? You went to Aunt Maggie. You made me out to be the villain," Nick summarized as he approached her. Abigail said that Nick had misunderstood, and she stressed that she was simply worried about Gabi. Nick insisted that the situation was none of Abigail's business, but she countered that Will was her cousin. Nick reminded Abigail that he was also her cousin, and he complained that he always ranked last among his family members.

Abigail tried to protest that Nick was wrong, but he interrupted her. "The whole family thinks that you are so perfect. Such a little saint. If only they knew the truth -- that perfect little Abigail Deveraux is nothing but E.J. DiMera's...whore," Nick mused.

At the DiMera mansion, E.J. poured himself a glass of whiskey and sipped it as he thought about Nick's earlier comments. E.J. drained the glass before turning his attention to Stefano's portrait. After staring at the portrait for a moment, E.J. approached it, moved it away from the wall, and started to enter the combination to the safe it concealed. E.J. retrieved an overstuffed envelope from the safe and dumped its contents on the desk.

Meanwhile, outside the mansion, Sami received a phone call from Maggie, who revealed that the conversation with Nick hadn't gone well. Maggie reported that Nick was convinced that he was doing the right thing. Maggie stressed that Nick wasn't a bad person, adding that he truly cared about Gabi and Arianna and that he simply wanted what was best for them. Sami argued that it would be best for Gabi and Arianna if Nick ended up in Siberia. Maggie groaned and optimistically predicted that everything was going to be all right. Sami ended the call after replying that she wished that she could feel the same way about the matter.

When Sami entered the living room, she found E.J. sitting at the desk, holding his cell phone and staring at multiple stacks of cash. Sami wondered what was going on. Ignoring the question, E.J. calmly told Sami to close the living room door behind her. Sami complied with E.J.'s request and wondered what had happened. "I just came from seeing Mr. Fallon. I realize now he's never going to let us live in any peace. His demands are always going to escalate. He is completely unhinged," E.J. calmly replied.

Sami revealed that she had asked for Maggie's help earlier, although she added that she wasn't sure if that had done anything to help the situation. E.J. guessed that it had probably only made matters worse. Sami sighed and wondered what she and E.J. could do next. "I'm not going to allow Nicholas Fallon to destroy my family...and everything we have fought for," E.J. calmly stated. Sami inspected a stack of cash before spotting an unlabeled phone number written on a piece of paper.

"Do it," Sami encouraged E.J. as she realized the true implications of the items surrounding him.

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Rory showed up at the Horton house because he'd read about what had happened to J.J.'s mom and Dr. Jonas. J.J. assured Rory that Jennifer and Daniel were all right. Rory made a crack about how hot J.J.'s mom and sister were, and J.J. responded by punching him in the arm. Rory guessed that J.J. was in a funk because of Paige. J.J. retorted that he was with Bev, and besides, he had no intention of wasting his time on Paige because she was leaving for college in California in a couple of months.

Bev was looking for J.J. in Horton Square when Paige, wearing her reflective community-service vest, approached and asked how J.J. was doing after what had happened to his mom the previous night. Bev grudgingly let Paige read the text messages she'd gotten from J.J. the night before. Paige read aloud, "Just got back. Mom and Daniel are okay. Crazy dude is dead. I have to stay here. Can't make it back out tonight. Sorry." Bev explained that J.J. had asked her out. Before Paige left, Bev asserted disdainfully, "I don't know what happened with you two or why J.J. ended it... All I know is he's so over you."

J.J. was anxious when he reported for community service because he was a few minutes late. Bev tried to ask if he was all right, but he told her curtly that he didn't have time to talk. Bev maintained that what J.J.'s supervisor thought didn't matter. Annoyed that Bev didn't seem to get it, J.J. snapped that he wanted to get his probation over with. Stung, Bev left.

Paige ran into J.J. as she was carrying a blooming tree, which she explained was part of the park beautification project. Paige informed a grateful J.J. that she had covered for him with his supervisor. Before J.J. could walk away, Paige said that she was glad that his mom and Dr. Jonas were all right. When J.J. responded irritably, Paige demanded, "Damn it, J.J., what is wrong with you?"

Paige pointed out that everyone in their class was applying to college -- and she hadn't done anything wrong. J.J. argued that she would be leaving him behind when she left for Stanford. "You're gonna have some new guy, like, five minutes after you get there, so what is the use? Why should I even bother talking to you? Why should I bother with any of it?" J.J. demanded.

As Nicole sat in a booth at Club TBD, she imagined shooting and killing Liam -- but as she checked his pockets for the damning evidence against her, Liam suddenly turned into Eric, who accused Nicole of murdering his love for her. Nicole shook herself out of it and took a sip from her Bloody Mary. Debra Frazer, Liam's ex-wife, arrived and joined Nicole. Debra revealed that the police had questioned her that morning, so she knew what Liam had done. "You must've been scared to death," Debra remarked.

Nicole admitted that she was even more frightened about what Liam might have had in the safe deposit box. Debra said that she had gone to the bank and told them she'd lost her key to the box, but there hadn't been anything remarkable inside. Nicole wondered aloud, "Where did he put it?" Debra asked, "Put what? What did my bum of an ex-husband have on you?" Nicole refused to divulge any details.

"No one can know that you and I talked about this," Nicole emphasized. Debra assured Nicole that she was leaving town that night. "[Liam] got what was coming to him. He can't hurt you anymore. You won," Debra added as she got up from the booth and left the club.

Eric smiled as he reviewed some images on his camera. He called Nicole and asked if she could meet him in the park where they'd had a picnic. She agreed. A few minutes later, Nicole was in the park, fretting about where the email that she had shredded and Liam had pasted together could be. She worried that Liam had sent everything to Eric -- and that was why Eric wanted to meet her there.

Before a panicked Nicole could leave, Eric showed up and informed her that she was at the wrong benches. Eric said that he'd wanted to see Nicole because of an email he'd gotten that morning that had put his future with her into perspective. He led her to the proper benches so he could show her what he was talking about. When they arrived, several sheets of paper were laid out, face down, on one of the benches.

Nicole was puzzled, so Eric explained that he'd received the pictures that he'd taken of her the previous week from his retoucher. "I wanted to spend last night with you. When I got these pictures and saw how beautiful you looked, and happy, it made me realize that I need to stop dithering around and get my life back," Eric declared. He admitted that he was better with images than he was at talking about his feelings.

After getting permission, Nicole turned over the first picture. It was a close-up of her smiling face with the word "WILL" next to it. The next image was also of her, with the word "YOU." She flipped over the third sheet and saw another picture of herself with the word "MARRY." Eric turned over the final piece of paper, which read, "ME?" "All you have to do is say 'yes,' and nothing can keep us apart ever again," Eric told a beaming Nicole. Meanwhile, the incriminating email still lurked in the bushes on Smith Island.

Jordan arrived at the Brady Pub just in time to overhear Rafe saying to Kate, "It was all based on a lie." Jordan assumed that Kate had blabbed to Rafe about Jordan's past. Kate spotted Jordan and said hello. "I can explain," Jordan began as she sat down, but Kate claimed that she had just been telling Rafe how lucky he was to have Jordan in his life. Rafe explained that he and Kate had just been discussing how Gabi wouldn't listen to anything he said where Nick Fallon was concerned.

Kate said pointedly that it was terrible when someone had no idea that their relationship was based on a lie. Rafe got a call from the station and had to get back to work. As soon as Rafe had gone, Jordan couldn't get away from Kate quickly enough, but Kate stopped her. Noting that what she'd said had rattled Jordan, Kate said, "If you want to play in my league, you're going to have to sharpen up your game."

Jordan asked why Kate hadn't revealed what she knew about Jordan to Rafe. Kate replied that she wasn't going to tell Rafe anything until she had the whole story because she knew that Jordan would just invent a believable cover. "Well, you can call off you're dogs... because I'm leaving Salem. You win," Jordan announced bitterly. Kate said that she really hoped Jordan didn't leave town, explaining, "I want to see the look on your face when I am finally able to tell Rafe what a complete and total fraud you really are." Kate sauntered out, leaving Jordan steaming.

At the DiMera mansion, Sami saw the stack of cash and the phone number on a slip of paper in front of E.J. and deduced that he'd been planning to call a hit man to get take care of Nick. "Do it," Sami instructed her fiancé. E.J. cautioned her that, once he did, there would be no turning back. Her jaw set determinedly, Sami picked up E.J.'s phone and dialed the number. "Believe me, I get it," she assured E.J., handing him the phone.

E.J. advised the man who answered that he needed something taken care of. Not wanting to do business over the phone, the man asked E.J. to meet him in the park outside the square in twenty minutes. The man added that he would be reading the sports page -- but first he wanted to make sure that E.J. understood the terms. E.J. said that he did. After he hung up, he cautioned Sami that once he had paid the man, they couldn't stop him.

Sami said that she didn't see any other way to stop Nick from destroying all of their lives. "Oh, he'll be stopped. Don't you worry about that," E.J. assured her. Sami handed E.J. the bag of cash, and he turned to leave, but Sami grabbed him and gave him a passionate kiss before he headed out.

After E.J. had gone, Allie entered the living room and asked her mom for help with her science homework. Sami read a passage aloud from Allie's book about the ozone layer, and Allie said that she needed her mom to explain it. Sami admitted that it was a little complicated. Allie revealed that once when her dad had gone out of town, she'd stayed Julie's, and Nick had helped her with her homework.

Sami was a bit taken aback, especially when Allie added, "He's really nice and smart. He explained a lot of science things to me... He said you're smart, too... He said when I grow up, I'm going to be just as smart and as beautiful as you." Allie said that Nick was her and Ciara's favorite cousin. Flustered, Sami stammered an excuse about something she needed to do and headed for the door. Allie protested that she still had homework, but Sami encouraged her to ask Harold or Stefano for help.

In the park outside Horton Square, when Nick referred to Abigail as "E.J. DiMera's whore," she hauled off and slapped him. Nick's response was to burst out laughing, which only infuriated Abigail. Still chuckling, Nick noted that it would damage Abigail's "saintly" reputation if the family saw the photos of her with E.J. "I never pretended to be a saint," Abigail protested. Nick countered that Abigail thought she was better than him, just as Will did -- but at least Nick owned what he'd done, and he hadn't let the Bradys cover up what he'd done, like Will had.

Nick taunted Abigail that Grandma Horton would roll over in her grave if she could see the pictures of E.J. and Abigail. "I really don't care what you think about me, Nick, but this would destroy my mom, and she's already been through enough," Abigail said imploringly, fighting back tears. Nick asserted that even if Jennifer told Hope, Julie, and the rest of the family what Abigail had done, everything would still turn out fine for Abigail.

"Why are you doing this?" Abigail pleaded. "I didn't do this. You did. And this time, it's gonna come out. And once Sami gets through with E.J. -- oh, man, he is gonna be singing the blues in a very, very high voice. And then she is gonna come gunning for you," Nick predicted derisively. Abigail tearfully begged Nick to just leave it alone -- just as Julie showed up and demanded to know what was going on.

Nick assured Julie that everything was fine, but Julie didn't buy it because Abigail had sounded upset. Nick claimed that Abigail had been confiding in him about a coworker with whom she was having trouble. Abigail said that she would handle the problem. Julie asked how Jennifer was doing, and Abigail said that her mom was just glad to be alive -- as were they all.

After Abigail left, Julie practically ordered Nick to join her for a cup of coffee so he could tell her what was really going on between him and his cousin. As Nick and Julie strolled through the gate into the square, a man carrying a newspaper under his arm was exiting. The man took a seat on the bench and opened his paper to the sports section.

When Julie and Nick arrived at the Brady Pub, Nick admitted that he and Abigail had argued. Julie reminded Nick that Abigail's mother had nearly been killed the night before. Nick acknowledged wryly that he always screwed things up, but Julie admonished him that everyone in the family knew how hard he'd been working to make a better life for himself. She urged Nick to let go of the past and focus on his future.

Julie disclosed that she'd also had a past to live down -- but since then, she'd gone on to have a wonderful husband and a very happy life. Nick was curious about what young Julie's problem had been. Julie explained that as Tom and Alice Horton's first grandchild, she'd worried that people had thought she hadn't been living up to the family name, and it had taken her a very long time to realize that the family had loved her no matter what she'd done. Julie added that Nick should give the family a chance, as she had.

Nick asserted that he was trying to change, noting that a few years earlier, he hadn't thought he would ever be happy again -- but he had a second chance with Gabi, a good job, and incredible family. Julie declared, "You've had a tough road, baby. I knew you needed a break, and now, it looks like you're going to get exactly what you deserve."

E.J. ambled through the gate from the square and took a subtle glance in the direction of the bench to make sure the man seated there was reading the sports section. Before E.J. could speak to the man, Rafe showed up. The man left when E.J. addressed Rafe as "Detective Hernandez." Rafe explained that he'd been headed to the squad room but it had been a false alarm, but he'd seen E.J. and wanted to tell him something.

Rafe clarified that he was glad E.J. was representing Will in the custody agreement with Gabi. He added that he knew Gabi didn't want the terms that her lawyer had defined, but she had been listening to everything that Nick was telling her. "If Will's gotta deal with a creep like Nick, I'm glad he's got a shark like you looking out for his rights," Rafe declared. To express his appreciation, Rafe stuck out his hand, and E.J. shook it. Rafe left.

Rafe ran into Jordan outside Club TBD, and she greeted him by kissing him ardently. They immediately headed to Rafe's apartment, where Jordan forcefully pushed him onto the bed and climbed on top off him. Rafe wondered what had gotten into Jordan. "Just let me know that you love me," Jordan murmured. Rafe reassured her that he did, but she silenced him by putting her mouth over his. The two had sex.

The man with the newspaper returned, and E.J. sat next to him on the bench. E.J. complied when the man instructed him to leave the bag on the bench. "Name?" the man asked. "Nicholas Fallon," E.J. replied. "Twenty-four hours -- or less," the man said before picking up the bag and leaving.

Just then, Sami rushed up and saw the man walking away. She started to chase after him, but E.J. pulled her back. "We have to stop him!" Sami said. E.J. reminded her of their earlier conversation. "Nicholas Fallon is a dead man," E.J. declared quietly. Sami explained that she wanted to try to stop the hit because she didn't know how she would explain it to Allie, who had been exchanging emails and text messages with Nick and whom Nick had been helping with her homework.

E.J. asserted that Nick had been charming Allie in order to turn her against Sami. Sami argued that there had to be another way to stop Nick. E.J. stated firmly, "When I gave that man the money, I did not have one second's remorse because I knew that I was ridding this town of a monster who destroys people's lives -- and you should know I would've done this with or without your consent."

Just then, E.J. got a text message from Abigail, demanding that he meet her at her mom's office right away. E.J. said that it was something he had to take care of for work. After reassuring Sami that they would get through it together, he led her out of the park.

Nick was leaving the pub a little later when Sami walked past. When Nick called out to her, she paused for a moment but then continued on her way a little more quickly. "Sami wait -- please," Nick requested, following after her.

When E.J. arrived at Jennifer's office, Abigail explained that her mom had taken the day off. Abigail revealed that she'd learned that Nick knew about her affair with E.J., and she was worried that Nick would ruin everything for the two of them. E.J. tried to assure her that wouldn't happen. Abigail maintained that Nick was enjoying it too much, and she knew that the truth would get out in the worst possible way. She informed E.J. that she had decided to tell her mother that they had slept together.

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

In Horton Square, J.J. demanded to know why he should even bother talking to Paige when she was leaving for Stanford. Paige reminded him that she wasn't leaving for months. J.J. tried to walk away, but Paige refused to let him go until they talked. "What good is that going to do? It's not like dragging this thing out is gonna change anything," J.J. groused. He took off his reflective vest, slapped it down, and stormed off.

Paige followed J.J. back to his house to return his vest and confront him. Paige demanded to know why J.J. was acting like she'd done something wrong because she'd gotten accepted to a college that wasn't in Salem. She refused to leave until J.J. talked to her. "My mom could've died last night, and my dad fell down an elevator shaft and I never saw him again," J.J. explained. Paige understood that he was angry because he knew how hard it would be to say goodbye.

J.J. confided that his dad had called him the night before the accident, but J.J. had ignored the call because he'd been winning at a poker game. "I told myself that I'd call him tomorrow and tell him how much I'd won. But there wasn't any tomorrow," J.J. added, his voice breaking. He clearly still felt guilty about not taking his dad's call, but Paige urged him not to beat himself up about it. J.J. continued that he had idolized his father, then the book his dad had written had gotten published, and J.J. had learned some "pretty bad stuff" about his dad.

"Is that why you trashed the store window?" Paige asked gently. J.J. admitted that although he'd wanted to, he hadn't been able to talk to his dad or anyone else about it. "And then you came along, and you were great. I could talk to you -- and the next thing that I know, you're going, too," J.J. said. Paige assured J.J. that she understood his desire to not want to hurt like that again. She added that she knew how that felt because her dad was gone, too.

Paige clarified that she had no idea whether her dad was alive or dead because he'd taken off. She admitted that she'd once wondered if it were her fault. J.J. confessed that he'd assumed nothing bad had ever happened to Paige. She said that she understood why J.J. had reacted the way he had when he'd learned she was going to Stanford. "You're so cool on the surface, but inside, you feel so much," Paige added, noting that she'd wanted to get to know J.J. because she'd heard him play guitar.

"I wanted to feel close to you -- even if saying goodbye is as hard for me as it is for you," Paige explained. When she stroked J.J.'s hand, he leaned in and kissed her.

In the park, Nicole turned over the photographs of herself that Eric had printed out, which spelled out his marriage proposal to her. An ecstatic Nicole declared, "This is the sweetest, most romantic proposal in the world. Yes, I will marry you!" She threw her arms around Eric's neck and kissed him. Eric produced an engagement ring and slipped it on Nicole's finger. Nicole kissed him, and when she embraced him again, she held up her hand to admire the ring over his shoulder.

Eric apologized that the stone was so small, but Nicole assured him that it was perfect, and she intended to wear it for the rest of her life. Eric wanted to tell Sami right away since the two couples would share some of the same guest list. Nicole said that she was so happy to get to marry the man of her dreams that it was all right if they just got married at the justice of the peace. Eric pointed out that the news would travel fast, so they should start telling people in person so as not to hurt anyone's feelings.

Nicole thought they should tell Daniel and Jennifer right away, but Eric informed her that Hope was interviewing Jennifer and Daniel about what had happened the night before -- and Eric and Nicole were next. Nicole reacted with a bit of unease, and Eric wondered why the idea of answering Hope's questions bothered her so much. Nicole admitted that she didn't feel like talking to the cops on the same day her dreams had come true. Eric reminded her that she would also be right in the middle of a breaking story.

Nicole confided that it would be hard for her to believe in happy endings while reliving the events of the previous night. "I could've killed Daniel," Nicole added. Eric assured her that she hadn't committed a sin because she hadn't intended to hurt Daniel. Eric got a text message that Hope was ready to see them.

At Club TBD, Will showed one of his essays to Sonny. The professor had written on it, "A little dark and depressing." Will glumly admitted that his mood was showing in his writing, which indicated that Nick had obviously gotten into his head. Hope arrived and overheard the guys referring to Nick. She wanted to know if Nick were making things difficult for Will and Sonny again.

Will explained that he had asked Gabi for a custody agreement. Hope didn't understand what that had to do with Nick, because Arianna's custody was none of his business. Sonny asked if Hope would tell Nick she thought that. Hope got a text message and had to leave, but she promised to talk to Nick the next day. After Hope had gone, Will expressed skepticism that her talking to Nick would do any good, since Nick wasn't afraid of anyone, including Hope.

Sonny urged Will to remember that E.J. was on their side, but Will pointed out that Nick was holding all the cards -- and Nick could end up raising Will's daughter. "That is not going to happen," Sonny said firmly. Will left to take a walk and clear his head.

At the Brady Pub, Hope informed the relieved Eric and Nicole that the D.A. had concluded that everyone who'd been on Smith Island when Liam had died was in the clear. Nicole asked if the crime scene unit had found anything on Liam or in his home. Hope wanted to know if Nicole were asking on the record. "I'm sorry. Always a reporter," Nicole covered. Hope said that -- off the record -- the crime scene unit hadn't found anything relevant.

As Hope left for the station, she assured Eric and Nicole, "As far as the department is concerned, this case is closed." Nicole threw her arms around Eric with relief and announced, "Did you hear that? It's over!"

At Daniel's apartment, Jennifer changed the dressing on Daniel's bullet wound and said that she blamed herself for his getting shot. Daniel assured Jennifer that it hadn't been her fault, but she asserted that she should have figured out that Liam was dangerous. Daniel didn't see how she could have known that, since she'd dated Liam for a very short time. Jennifer admitted that when she'd told Liam she couldn't see him anymore, he had flipped out and called her a bitch, but he'd immediately apologized.

Jennifer explained that she hadn't told Daniel because she'd been afraid that he would try to fix things for her. She said that she felt terrible about it and vowed never to make that mistake again. Daniel reminded Jennifer that Liam was dead, and it was over. Jennifer confessed that she'd also lost the sapphire necklace that Daniel had given her, and Hope had searched the area on Smith Island but hadn't found it.

Jennifer wanted to head out to the cabin to look for the necklace, but Daniel insisted on going with her. He explained that he wanted to see her face light up when she found the necklace because the night he'd given it to her had been the happiest night of his life. A beaming Jennifer agreed to let Daniel accompany her.

When Daniel and Jennifer got to the cabin, he suggested that they split up to search for the necklace. He headed outside while Jennifer looked around inside. After she swept up the mess from the night before, Jennifer suddenly spotted her necklace under the couch. "Daniel, I found it!" she shouted jubilantly, running outside.

Meanwhile, Daniel cleared away the remainder of the crime-scene tape as he looked around the woods. He spotted something suspended in a shrub and walked over to retrieve it. Daniel was stunned when he inspected it and saw that it was a printout of an email, which had obviously been shredded and pasted back together, to Dr. Jakub Chyka about a drug cocktail.

In Jennifer's office, Abigail informed E.J. that she intended to tell her mom that she'd had sex with E.J. because she thought it would be better for Jennifer to hear about it from Abigail than from Nick. E.J. assured Abigail that Nick wouldn't say anything to anyone. When Abigail learned that E.J. knew about Nick's pictures, she guessed that Nick was blackmailing E.J. Abigail warned E.J. that Nick would take E.J.'s money and then go ahead and tell everyone because he hated Sami and E.J.

Abigail had practically worked herself into a frenzy, so E.J. grabbed her and ordered her to pull herself together. He immediately pulled his hand away and apologized. Maintaining that Nick could be reasoned with, E.J. urged Abigail not to add to her mother's anxiety after the ordeal of the previous night. "Would you just please let me fix this?" E.J. asked. Abigail agreed but requested that E.J. inform her if he couldn't fix things so she could talk to her mom before word got out.

Later, Abigail stopped Will as he was walking through Horton Square. She tearfully assured him that she never would have given Nick the name of the lawyer if she'd known that Gabi was going to use him in Arianna's custody case. Will reassured her that he understood because Nick was a bastard who used people. Will apologized for disparaging their cousin, but Abigail assured him that he never had to apologize for bashing Nick.

Walking as quickly as she could in high heels, Sami ducked into the park outside Horton Square, looking over her shoulder the whole way. Despite her best efforts, Nick caught up with her. "Something's going on, and I want to know what it is," Nick said. Sami admitted that Nick was still a mystery to her because, while she hated the things he did to people, he'd also been helping Allie with her homework and had gotten a lovely wedding gift for Will and Sonny.

"Has it ever occurred to you that maybe I just want to fit in?" Nick asked with seeming sincerity. "Is that really what you want? Because if it is, maybe it's not too late," Sami said. She gently encouraged Nick to try to understand how hard it would be for Will to only be able to see his daughter every other weekend. She pointed out that Gabi listened to Nick.

Nick concluded meekly, "You're saying I should stay out of that... And what else? Stop seeing Gabi?" Sami suggested that perhaps Nick should, at least for a little while. A seemingly docile Nick asked if Sami thought doing all that would make people accept him. Sami said that Nick's best chance was to slow down and take a big step back. Finally meeting Sami's eyes, Nick declared frostily, "That is never, ever going to happen."

Sami reminded Nick of everything he'd just said. Nick acknowledged that he'd just been messing with her head. He continued that he knew that Sami and the others would never accept him, so instead of begging for their approval, he was just going to take what he wanted -- and what he wanted was Gabi. Nick added that he was also going to be spending a lot of time with Arianna. "So you can go and tell your little boy that if he minds his manners...maybe I'll let him come by and visit his daughter once in a while. Maybe," Nick warned Sami before walking away.

Later, Sonny was furious when he spied Nick sitting at a table outside Club TBD, drinking coffee. Sonny went outside and ordered Nick to leave, but Nick asserted that he wasn't going anywhere. Sonny demanded, "Say you do get back together with Gabi. Isn't it going to bother you that you have to blackmail her to be with you?" Nick asserted that Gabi knew how good they could be together. Sonny wondered if it were good enough for her not to mind watching Nick ruin Will's life.

"Will's an expert at ruining his own life. He doesn't need any help from me," Nick asserted calmly. He reminded Sonny, "If Chad hadn't said that I wasn't the baby's father at my wedding, you two boys wouldn't be playing daddy. That would be me." Sonny argued that Will loved his daughter and Gabi, who would soon tire of Nick's manipulations. Nick pointed out that if Gabi turned her back on him, she would go to prison for what she'd done to Melanie -- and Gabi wouldn't be able to get near her daughter again.

An incredulous Sonny realized, "You don't care about her at all! You just want her to be that little good girl and do whatever you tell her to do." Nick warned Sonny that he and the others had better stay in line because Nick had all the power. Nick poured out his coffee, slammed down his mug, and left.

Sami was still upset when she arrived at the DiMera mansion. As she tried to steady her nerves, she spotted one of Johnny's drawings on the coffee table. It depicted E.J., Sami, Johnny, Allie, and Sydney all holding hands, with "I love my family" written in his childish print. E.J. walked in just as Sami burst into tears. She explained that Johnny didn't even let her kiss him goodbye when she dropped him off at school anymore.

"I love that boy so much, it scares me. I will do anything to keep the family he loves together, Samantha," E.J. assured his fiancée. Since E.J. could tell how distressed Sami was about what he'd set in motion, he offered to try to find the man he'd hired to go after Nick. "No. Don't stop it. I want that man to make Nick Fallon pay for everything that he has done, once and for all," Sami declared resolutely. "We are doing the right thing. Believe that," E.J. reassured her.

Abigail was walking through the park, lost in thought, when she decided that she had to tell her mom that she'd slept with E.J. As Abigail turned to leave, she suddenly stopped as if something had startled her.

When Sonny went to the Kiriakis mansion, Henderson advised him that his parents, as well as Maggie and Victor, were all out for the afternoon. Sonny said that he was there to pick up something that his mom had left for him. Sonny headed upstairs and took a wooden box out of a curio cabinet. He unlocked the box and opened it to reveal two pistols resting on the padding inside.

Will tracked Nick down in the park outside Horton Square. "Wow, looks like I hit the trifecta. First the mom, then the boyfriend -- sorry, the husband -- now the golden boy himself," Nick said snidely. Will said that the two of them had some things to clear up, but first he ordered Nick to stop calling him "golden boy."

Nick reminded Will, "Your mommy still worships you, even though you tried to blow away the man she's about to marry. Your boyfriend still married you, even though you knocked up your ex-girlfriend and lied about it to everybody. Only a golden boy gets away with things like that." Nick asserted that anyone in the rest of the world who heard the truth about Will would question his fitness as a father. Furious, Will punched Nick.

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Thursday, May 8, 2014
by Mike

At the crime scene on Smith Island, Daniel discovered two other shredded documents near the one that had gotten stuck in a shrub. As Daniel inspected the documents, he recalled that he had previously found a shredded document in Nicole's hotel room, as well.

Meanwhile, Jennifer called out to Daniel as she approached him from behind. Daniel tucked the documents in his inner jacket pocket before turning to face Jennifer, who revealed that she had found her necklace in the Horton cabin earlier. Jennifer was eager to leave right away, but she sensed some hesitation from Daniel, who was glancing distractedly around the area. Jennifer guessed that the crime scene was just dredging up bad memories for Daniel, and he played along with that assumption. After one last scan of the area, Daniel followed Jennifer back to the dock.

After failing to reach Daniel to tell him about the engagement, Nicole took Eric back to her hotel room so that she could give him a gift. Nicole explained that she had purchased the gift months earlier and had simply been waiting for the right time to give it to Eric. Nicole added that, like her engagement ring, the gift she was about to give Eric was wrapped in love, trust, and devotion.

"Sounds like some kind of gift," Eric mused. Nicole replied that Eric was "some kind of gift" -- the best kind, in fact. After kissing Eric, Nicole reached into a desk drawer and pulled out a medium-sized gift-wrapped box. Inside the box, Eric found an expensive new digital camera. Eric protested that it hadn't been necessary for Nicole to buy him such an extravagant gift, but she disagreed, insisting that he deserved it but never would have bought it for himself. Nicole urged Eric to simply enjoy the gift and take amazing, award-winning photographs with it.

Nicole acknowledged that Eric had given up a lot to be with her, since being a priest hadn't just been a job to him -- it had been his life. Nicole said that she was very sorry about what had happened to Eric, but he reminded her that it wasn't her fault that he had been forced to leave the priesthood -- it was Kristen's fault. Eric encouraged Nicole to forget about the past and instead focus on their future together.

"We tried in every way to prove that I should be a priest, but there was no proof -- no proof at all. I think it means that God wants us to be together. We have to accept it and move on. We need to build a life together -- a family. Losing that priesthood was something I thought I couldn't bear to lose -- something I never thought I could get through -- [but] you got me through it. And I'm a very happy and very lucky man," Eric summarized. Eric said that he loved Nicole, and she returned the sentiment, stressing that he had no idea just how much she loved him.

At the Horton house, J.J. and Paige moved to the living room couch as they continued to kiss. Things started to get more heated as J.J. rubbed his hands over Paige's body and moved from kissing her lips to kissing her neck. Paige wrapped her arms around J.J.'s neck and seemed to be enjoying what he was doing, but she eventually stopped him and gently pushed him away.

J.J. acknowledged that he had gotten carried away for a moment, but Paige assured him that there was no need to apologize, since the feeling had been mutual. J.J. admitted that he was really going to miss Paige when she left for Stanford later that year. Paige reminded J.J. that her departure was still four months away, but he clarified that it was actually only three-and-a-half months away.

J.J. apologized for being "such a jerk" to Paige earlier, but she insisted that his previous apology for his behavior had been more than enough. Paige added that she understood why J.J. had acted the way that he had. "Maybe a little better than I do," J.J. conceded. J.J. hoped that he and Paige could "figure things out," since he really liked her. Paige smiled and returned the sentiment.

"So, then, um -- do -- do you wanna go out sometime? Maybe tomorrow night?" J.J. asked. Paige said no, but before J.J. could express his disappointment, she smiled and clarified that she definitely wanted to go out with him the following night. J.J. walked Paige to the front door, but when he opened it, he was surprised to see Jennifer standing outside.

Paige said that she had heard about what had happened on Smith Island and that she was really glad that Jennifer and Daniel were all right. Jennifer thanked Paige and wondered if Paige and J.J. were headed somewhere. J.J. clarified that Paige was the only one who was leaving, and he informed Jennifer that Paige had been accepted to Stanford. Jennifer was impressed and mused that a degree from Stanford would definitely make it much easier for Paige to get into medical school.

After promising to call Paige later, J.J. said farewell to her. "I like her...and I don't think I'm the only one here who does," Jennifer knowingly observed after J.J. closed the front door behind Paige. J.J. smiled but remained silent. Meanwhile, J.J. received a text message from Bev, who wanted to know if he wanted to hang out with her for a while. J.J. sighed and told Jennifer that, while everything was all right, there was something that he needed to take care of right away. After ensuring that Jennifer was okay with being alone for a while, J.J. excused himself and exited the house.

J.J. arranged to meet Bev at the Brady Pub. Bev showed J.J. a flier for a zombie film that was going to be playing at a local abandoned warehouse in the near future. Bev reported that she had it on great authority that the film was the cheesiest zombie film that had ever been made. J.J. apologetically informed Bev that he couldn't accompany her to the screening of the film. Bev shrugged and suggested that she and J.J. could instead attend the Chuck Norris film festival that would be held the day after the screening of the zombie film.

"No, no, I -- I mean, um...I -- I can't go out with you...like that, like -- like it's a date," J.J. stammered. J.J. explained that he and Paige had decided to give their relationship another chance. Bev nodded sadly but remained silent. "You can hate me, but I just -- I really hope you don't. The thing is, is I -- I feel like I've -- I've screwed up here. And if you don't want to be friends, then I don't blame you, but we are friends, and I really like having you as a friend -- I do," J.J. sincerely stated.

"Well, I could try hating you, but...it probably wouldn't work. God, I get so frustrated with you, but...you're a really good guy, even when you do something like this," Bev conceded. J.J. explained that he had wanted to be honest with Bev about the development, and she acknowledged that he had done the right thing. Bev claimed that she had been going back and forth on her decision to date J.J., and she predicted that if they had tried to date each other, the relationship probably would have ended in disaster. J.J. laughed and agreed that Bev was probably right about that.

Bev conceded that she and J.J. were probably better off remaining friends anyway, but she added that there was a problem with that scenario, as well -- Paige. "I mean, she doesn't like me, and she doesn't like Rory. If you hook up with her, you could be finding yourself looking for a whole new set of friends," Bev warned J.J. J.J. insisted that, regardless of who he chose to date, his friends would still remain his friends.

J.J. assured Bev that she wasn't going anywhere and that Paige would eventually learn to like Bev and Rory just as much as J.J. did. Bev -- who was facing the front window of the pub -- hugged J.J. and watched as Paige walked past the pub, pausing for a moment to check something on her cell phone. "Paige and me, friends. That'll really be something," Bev told J.J. as Paige walked away without witnessing the scene.

Nicole and Eric went to the Horton house to see Jennifer, hoping that Daniel would also be there. Jennifer explained that Daniel had been scheduled for a surgery that afternoon. As Eric received a phone call and excused himself to answer it, Nicole worriedly wondered what had happened to Daniel, who had previously seemed fine despite the gunshot wound she had given him. Jennifer clarified that Daniel had been scheduled to perform a surgery that afternoon.

Nicole breathed a sigh of relief and sadly admitted that she always ended up hurting the people she loved. Nicole added that she wouldn't have been able to live with herself if she had somehow ended up being responsible for taking Daniel away from Jennifer, especially after everything that the couple had already been through together. Nicole said that, while she loved Daniel, she probably loved the idea of Daniel and Jennifer being together even more. Jennifer said that she could feel that support from Nicole.

Jennifer said that she was really glad that Nicole had shown up at the Horton cabin in time to rescue Jennifer from Liam. Nicole replied that she was just glad that the whole ordeal was over, but Jennifer only halfheartedly agreed, prompting Nicole to wonder if something was wrong. Jennifer admitted that she couldn't stop thinking about the fact that Liam had implied that she was crazy for thinking that Nicole was her friend. Nicole reasoned that Liam had said that because he had resented the fact that she had been trying to help Jennifer and Daniel. Jennifer seemed to accept the argument but mused that it had still seemed like an odd thing for Liam to say.

Eric interrupted as he reentered the living room and guessed that Nicole had not yet shared their news with Jennifer. Jennifer was instantly curious, so Nicole casually revealed the engagement ring. Jennifer gasped and happily congratulated and hugged Nicole. Meanwhile, in Daniel's apartment, Daniel inspected the shredded documents as he recalled various things that Nicole had said and done during the past few months that suddenly seemed suspicious to him.

In the park, Abigail ran into Ben, who wondered if she was all right. Abigail somewhat defensively insisted that she was fine, but Ben observed that she was shaking. Ben offered to be Abigail's confidant, but she rejected the offer, reminding him that he had previously promised not to intrude in her personal life. Abigail stormed off after reiterating that she was fine.

At the Horton Town Square, Gabi overheard Jordan talking to someone on the phone, trying to purchase a one-way ticket for the following day on a flight to San Francisco. Jordan sighed with frustration when she learned that the tickets for that particular flight were already sold out. After Jordan ended the call, Gabi questioned her about it.

Jordan vaguely stated that the matter was complicated. Gabi wondered what Rafe had said about Jordan's decision to leave town. Jordan's silence led Gabi to believe that Rafe didn't know that Jordan was planning to leave, and Jordan confirmed the suspicion, explaining that she hadn't wanted to upset him unnecessarily. Gabi agreed that Jordan's departure would indeed upset Rafe, since he was in love with Jordan.

Abigail was passing through the area, so Gabi called out for some help, hoping that, together, they could somehow talk Jordan out of leaving Salem. "Do you think I'd be doing this if I didn't have to?" Jordan asked the women. Gabi guessed that Jordan was keeping the departure a secret because something was seriously wrong. Jordan begged for the freedom to handle the situation her own way, and she abruptly excused herself.

After Jordan left, Gabi sighed and pointed out to Abigail that Jordan's behavior had seemed out of character, since Jordan was usually a "master of control." Gabi added that, with everything else that had been going on lately, she had been holding on to the idea that Rafe and Jordan's relationship was stable and good, because he deserved to be happy. "Gabi...'with everything going on.' Is there more? Has Nick done something else?" Abigail wondered.

Gabi claimed that she had just been referring to the "horrible tension" surrounding the custody situation. Abigail couldn't understand why there was any tension at all, since Gabi and Will had always worked everything out together amicably in the past. Abigail once again wondered if Nick was stirring up trouble, but Gabi somewhat nervously denied the suspicion.

"Which is 'Gabi' for 'yes,'" Abigail knowingly translated. Abigail sighed heavily and decided that, while it might not be wise for her to do so because of Gabi's relationship with Nick, she was nevertheless going to trust Gabi with something. Gabi started to leave, stating that she'd had enough of the conversation, but Abigail stopped her.

"Nick...he knows something about me. I made a really horrible mistake, and Nick knows all about it. Gabi, this is fun for him. Gabi, listen to me, please. You have got to help me. He is taunting me. He's making these veiled threats about people finding out. It's terrible, Gabi. I don't know what he's going to do next. I can't -- my mom almost died last night, Gabi. And this morning, he was just throwing this thing in my face. I can't tell you what I did, but...Gabi, he could ruin my life, and my mother's, too. So please, please talk to him. You've gotta get him to do the right thing," Abigail tearfully begged Gabi.

Gabi shook her head and tearfully admitted that she couldn't help Abigail. "When I talk to Nick...he doesn't listen. He doesn't listen to anyone but Nick. I'm sorry. I'm really sorry. You're my friend, and I hate that you're upset, and I hate that he's treating you like this, but Abigail, there's nothing I can do. He hates it when people tell him what to do, okay? I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry," Gabi added, barely maintaining her composure. Gabi abruptly walked away, ignoring Abigail's attempt to stop her. "Oh, my God. She's in worse shape than I am," Abigail realized.

Elsewhere, Nick lunged at Will, and a fight ensued. Nick continued to antagonize Will as they struggled. Will tried to punch Nick again, but Nick blocked the punch and countered with one of his own. Nick dared Will to throw another punch, and Will charged toward Nick in response, wondering why Nick couldn't just leave. "I intend to...as soon as I get Gabi back -- and Ari, too, of course," Nick replied.

"You son of a bitch! You sick son of a bitch!" Will shouted as he took another swing at Nick. Nick once again deflected the attempt, but Will refused to back down. As Will and Nick continued to struggle, Rafe arrived and pulled Will away from Nick. "I will kill you! You try to take my daughter from me, I will kill you!" Will vowed as Rafe held him back.

Nick dared Will to follow through with the threat. "You're not gonna kill me, Will. We both know you're not gonna kill me. You're gonna pout around until somebody comes along to solve your problems for you," Nick dismissively added. Rafe warned Nick to shut up, but Nick countered that, as a detective, Rafe should be taking Will's threat very seriously. "Okay, right now, I am not a detective -- I am Gabi's brother, and if you don't get the hell out of here, I am gonna slam you into next week," Rafe promised Nick.

"Wow. Wow. Gosh, that sounds like it'll hurt," Nick dismissively replied. Rafe made it clear that he was willing to test that theory, so Nick backed down and sarcastically wished Will luck during the custody hearing. Will lunged forward as Nick started to walk away, but Rafe intervened again.

After Nick left, Rafe pointed out that Will had played right into Nick's hands. "That couldn't have worked out better for Nick if he'd have planned it. You attacked him. You threatened his life in front of a cop. You do understand [that] if you have to go to court over Arianna's custody, his lawyer could call me to testify? Obviously, that's gonna work against you," Rafe added. Will explained that Nick had been talking about taking Arianna away from Will. Rafe understood but countered that Will was giving Nick the tools and the ammunition to do just that.

Rafe mused that, while he didn't believe for a second that Gabi wanted to take Arianna away from Will, he had no idea what Nick wanted to do, and Nick obviously knew how to manipulate Gabi. "I don't know how to beat him without -- I don't know how to beat him. Not while Gabi is doing whatever he wants," Will admitted with a sigh of defeat. Rafe assured Will that Nick's hold on Gabi wouldn't last forever. Rafe urged Will to go home, ice his bruised face, and stop letting Nick play him.

Outside the Brady Pub, Ben approached Nick and accused him of upsetting "her" again. "Can you be a little more specific? I've upset more than one 'her' lately," Nick impatiently replied. Ben scoffed and asked Nick if acting smug and scaring Abigail had thrilled him and made him feel like a man. Nick innocently stated that Ben was jumping to conclusions and that there were many explanations for Abigail's state of mind that had nothing to do with Nick.

Ben remained convinced that Nick was somehow responsible for Abigail's unhappiness. "Maybe. Maybe. But I'm not the root cause. Look, I don't like you very much, but I'm gonna give you a piece of advice -- she may look like a Kewpie doll, [but] she's a complicated piece of work, and you're asking for a real mess if you get involved in her life. And another thing? She's way out of your league, brother. You have a nice day now," Nick dismissively stated before sidestepping Ben and walking away.

While Ben was working at Club TBD later that day, Rafe arrived to talk to Sonny. Ben didn't know where Sonny was, so Rafe started to leave, but Ben stopped him and asked to talk to him about Jordan. Rafe warned that he wasn't really in the mood for another one of Ben's ultimatums, but Ben clarified that he actually needed to ask Rafe for a favor. Ben revealed that he needed Rafe to talk Jordan out of leaving Salem. Confused, Rafe said that Jordan had abandoned that idea several weeks earlier, but Ben clarified that she had recently resurrected the plan.

Ben took comfort in the fact that Jordan hadn't shared her plans with Rafe, reasoning that she had kept Rafe in the dark because she had feared that he would be able to talk her out of leaving. Ben urged Rafe to convince Jordan that it would be worthwhile for her to stay in Salem. Later, Rafe arranged to meet with Jordan in a secluded section of the town square. "Were you even gonna tell me that you were leaving?" Rafe asked after Jordan greeted him with a kiss.

Abigail entered Club TBD and apologized to Ben for her earlier behavior. Abigail admitted that she had been quite rude to Ben, but he dismissed her concerns, reasoning that she had simply been upset. "I was. It doesn't even matter why, because it's my fault, but...I messed up...pretty big, and...a lot of people are gonna be hurt because of it," Abigail vaguely explained.

Ben observed that Abigail didn't seem to be the kind of person who could hurt anyone. Abigail pointed out that Ben didn't even know her. "You're right -- I don't. But for some reason, I -- I feel like I do," Ben replied.

At the Kiriakis mansion, Sonny removed one of the guns from the gun case and turned it over in his hand before returning it to its appropriate place in the case's velvet insert. Sonny lifted the insert to reveal a second velvet insert beneath it -- one that held a third gun, as well as a silencer attachment. Sonny loaded the clip into the gun, attached the silencer, and pointed the gun at a wall to test its grip and aim. Satisfied, Sonny disassembled the gun and stuffed the three pieces in his backpack. After returning the gun case to its proper location, Sonny grabbed his backpack and exited the mansion.

When Sonny returned to his and Will's apartment, Will wasn't there, so Sonny took a seat on the living room couch and retrieved the gun from his backpack so that he could inspect it again. Sonny quickly stuffed the gun back in the backpack when he heard someone start to open the apartment door. Will entered the apartment, and Sonny quickly noticed the bruise on Will's face and the blood on Will's shirt.

Concerned, Sonny stood to examine the bruise as he wondered what had happened to Will. "What do you think happened? Nick happened," Will replied. Sonny glanced at his backpack, which he had left laying on the couch. Sonny iced the bruise with a bag of frozen peas while Will recapped what had happened with Nick earlier.

Will sighed and admitted that he had screwed up, but Sonny disagreed, reasoning that Nick had only managed to push Will's buttons. Will pointed out that Nick could force Rafe to testify against Will at the custody hearing. "Will, E.J. could call, like, three hundred people, all of whom would swear that they wanted to kill Nick. And sometimes, when you tell a father you're gonna take his kid away from him, that father stands up and starts swinging. So we've gotta stop acting like Nick has all the power," Sonny countered.

Will believed that Nick did have all the power, since Nick could send everyone who had known about the river incident to prison. "Will...I swear to you...I will not let him take Ari. I swear to you I will not let that happen," Sonny assured Will. Will maintained that there was nothing that Sonny could do. "No Kiriakis has ever, ever accepted that premise," Sonny replied.

Sonny said that he loved Will and wouldn't let anything bad happen to Will. Will leaned back on the couch as Sonny started kissing him. Will accidentally knocked the backpack off of the couch in the process, and he heard the sound of metal clanging against metal when it hit the floor. Will curiously wondered what Sonny was carrying in the backpack.

Sonny claimed that he was just carrying some tools that he planned to use later to fix a shelf behind the bar, but Will managed to reach into the backpack and pull out the gun before Sonny could stop him. "Were you going to shoot [the shelf]? Why -- Sonny, why do you have a g -- oh, God. God, no," Will worriedly stated as he glanced from the gun to Sonny.

After realizing that he had lost his cell phone, Nick returned to the scene of his earlier fight with Will to look for it. Nick muttered that if he was unable to find the phone, he would make "Horton" pay for the loss. Meanwhile, the hit man lurked nearby and discreetly watched his target. Nick found his cell phone and inspected it for damage before walking away.

The hit man discreetly followed Nick to the park, and when Nick paused to look at something on his cell phone, the hit man retrieved a gun from the inner pocket of his suit jacket.

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Friday, May 9, 2014

Lucas returned from Houston and met with Kate at the Brady Pub. Kate apologized for hurting Lucas' relationship with Sheryl. When Kate said that Sheryl had been a means to an end, Lucas disagreed. Kate informed Lucas that her plan had worked and that Jordan was leaving Salem. Kate updated Lucas on her confrontation with Jordan over the multiple ID cards in her apartment.

Lucas warned Kate that Rafe would not forgive her for running Jordan out of town. Narrowing his eyes, Lucas added that Kate was deluded if she believed that Rafe would start dating her again. Kate shook her head and changed the subject. Kate told Lucas about the custody agreement that Nick had pushed on Gabi. Furious, Lucas swore he would stop Nick.

In the park, Rafe confronted Jordan about leaving Salem. When Jordan noted that Gabi had misunderstood the situation, Rafe explained that Ben had told him that Jordan was leaving town. Upset, Rafe asked Jordan why Ben had told him the truth instead of Jordan. With a sigh, Jordan said that she loved Rafe but that she could not explain what had happened. Rafe gently pushed Jordan to open up to him.

Smiling, Jordan said she was lucky to have found a wonderful man. Jordan promised to stay in Salem with Rafe. As Rafe pulled Jordan close, Jordan apologized to Rafe for not telling him about her plans before Ben had told him.

In Club TBD, Ben and Abigail talked about Nick. Ben said that he had watched Nick and observed that no one liked him. When Ben asked what was bothering Abigail, she explained that she was upset about something she had done. Abigail apologized to Ben for yelling at him in the park, and they agreed to be friends. As Abigail turned to leave, Ben warned Abigail to steer clear of Nick. Abigail thought about E.J.'s promise to handle Nick, and she told Ben that she he did not expect to deal with Nick much longer.

While sitting on the couch in their apartment, Will accidentally discovered a gun in Sonny's backpack. When Will asked Sonny if he had intended to shoot Nick, Sonny admitted that he had. Sonny explained that Nick had threatened to send Gabi to prison if she did not do as Nick instructed.

"It's one thing when Gabi wanted to be with Nick, and when she was with Nick, we thought that was creepy. But she is a grown woman and she makes her own choices. But she doesn't want to be with him now. She's afraid and she should be from what he said. Nick has come off the rails. And that's the guys who's gonna raise Ari? Your daughter? Our daughter? I am not gonna let that happen to Ari," Sonny said.

Will looked at the gun in his hands and announced that they could not shoot Nick. When Sonny noted that there was no other way to deal with Nick, Will asked him if he had ever shot anyone. As Sonny stared in silence, Will said that he would not let Sonny live with the guilt of shooting Nick. Sonny countered that when Will had shot E.J., Will had been a scared kid. Will was angry that Sonny had planned to shoot Nick and added that if Sonny had shot Nick that it would ruin their lives.

When Will asked about the gun, Sonny explained that he had taken the gun from Victor's gun case at the mansion. Will did not want the gun in the house, but Sonny promised to put the gun on the top shelf of the closet and return it to Victor's house in the morning. When Will asked Sonny if he understood why it was wrong to kill Nick, Sonny said he understood.

"If it came down to it, I wouldn't hesitate. I would do anything for you," Sonny said. As Sonny and Will left the apartment, Sonny noted that he needed to close the club and would be home late.

In the DiMera living room, Sami yelled at an employee on the phone about work. When E.J. asked Sami if she was okay, she admitted that she was keeping busy so that she did not think about the hit man stalking Nick. E.J. reminded Sami that she was not to blame for the hit man. Sami countered that she had not stopped E.J. Nervous, Sami worried aloud about Nick's fate, but E.J. responded that what they had done had been necessary. With a sigh, Sami nodded at the portrait in the corner and commented that they were no better than Stefano.

E.J. sat Sami on the couch and quietly reminded her of the possible consequences if they continued to let Nick rule their lives. E.J. swore he would not let Nick act as Arianna's father. When Sami asked E.J. if they had explored all other possibilities other than murder, E.J said that there was no other option.

Anxious, Sami wanted to leave the house but E.J. advised her to stay put, as the servants had seen them and could provide them an alibi. When Sami mentioned sitting with the kids, E.J. changed his mind and urged Sami to join him on a walk.

Outside the pub, Kate swore to herself, "Nick Fallon, I am not kowtowing to you anymore." Kate walked to Club TBD and met with Sonny to talk about Will. When Kate asked if the court had notified Will about the custody hearing, a shocked Sonny said, "What?" Kate informed Sonny that a court hearing had been set. Furious, Sonny stressed that Nick was behind the court hearing.

Inside the pub, Lucas tapped his fork on the table in frustration. Allie ran out from the back room and asked Lucas if he was okay. Lucas explained that he was worried about a bad man. Jordan entered the pub and said hello Lucas and Allie. As Allie played with Jordan's phone in the corner, Jordan sat at the table with Lucas. When Lucas noted that Jordan appeared to be happy, Jordan said that she was happy in Salem with Rafe.

"So what? You're sticking around?" Lucas asked. With a grin, Jordan said that she planned to stay in Salem. Lucas' phone buzzed with a text from Kate that read, "Gabi's lawyer is taking it to court. Hearing next week." Annoyed, Lucas shook his head. Lucas texted Nick about his location, and Nick texted that he was in the park. Lucas asked Jordan to watch Allie for him while he ran an errand.

Jordan and Allie walked to the town square to get frozen yogurt, and they ran into Gabi. When Gabi asked how Jordan was doing, she smiled and admitted that she was staying in Salem. Gabi's phone beeped, and when she looked at it, she read a message from Rafe asking her to meet with him. Gabi said goodnight and walked away.

Jordan and Allie continued on to Club TBD in order to get a frozen yogurt sundae. When Jordan asked if Ben was working, the bartender said that Ben had been upset and had left work.

Will arrived at the pub and met with Abigail. Abigail informed Will that she believed that Nick would begin thinking sensibly. When Will asked for details, Abigail said that she had hope. Will swore that Nick would not change and would hurt them all. Noticing that Abigail had flinched, Will asked her if Nick was blackmailing her. When Will asked if the blackmail was about the guy that Abigail had been dating, she looked away. Abigail stressed that if her secret got out, it would hurt a lot of people.

"Tell me. Tell a guy who won't hold you hostage," Will said. As Abigail nodded, Will's phone rang. Will apologized and answered the phone call from Sonny. Sonny informed Will that the family court had set a hearing on the custody case. After he hung up, Abigail noted that Will looked upset. Will announced that he needed to leave then he marched out of the pub.

In the park, the hit man screwed a silencer onto his gun and leveled it at an unaware Nick. Julie called out to Nick, and the hit man stepped back into the bushes. After a hug, Julie told Nick that she was worried about him because she had heard that he had fought with Abigail. Nick said he had suffered through a bad day and that there was nothing wrong. With a sigh, Nick added that no one in town cared about him other than Julie and Maggie.

When Julie asked Nick to talk, he rattled off the list of people that did not like him. Julie discussed the custody case with Nick, and he stressed that the lawyer was dictating what was in the agreement. Upset, Nick complained that everyone acted as if he had kidnapped Arianna rather than just secure a lawyer for Gabi.

"I don't want to be at war with everyone," Nick said softly. Smiling, Julie said that Nick reminded her of the man he had been when he had first moved to Salem. Julie counseled Nick not to beat himself up. Nick said that he wanted to be happy.

"I know you want to push it it off on everybody else, but darling, you have to deal with your own demons," Julie said. "Demons? What do you mean, demons?" Nick said with growing agitation. Nick asked Julie if she believed he was crazy. Julie said that she did not believe Nick was crazy but that she was concerned about Nick's emotional well-being. Nick said that he did not want to talk to a therapist, but Julie urged Nick to talk to Marlena for a recommendation. Nick broke down and cried.

"It's been a long time since I felt safe," Nick said. Julie hugged him. "I don't want to be like this. I don't want to live like this," Nick said. Julie told Nick that he was not alone. Nick thanked Julie for not judging him. With a smile, Julie told Nick that things would get better. Julie offered to take Nick to dinner, but he declined and noted that he wanted to be alone in the park.

"See you soon," Nick said. "Kiss goodbye," Julie said and then walked away. As Nick sat alone on the park bench, he thought about the nice things that people had said about him recently. Fighting tears, Nick called Marlena on the phone and asked if she could recommend a therapist to him.

"I don't think I can go on like this, and um, I just got to shut it all down. It's time. I know that I'm hurting people. I know that. And I'm hurting me, I'm hurting myself, and I don't want to do that. And I can change it. It feels really good just actually saying that to you like maybe there's hope," Nick said. As Nick paced nervously, someone holding a gun with a silencer shot Nick in the back. Nick turned to face his attacker then looked down at the blood on his chest. Nick fell to the ground.

Sami and E.J. walked to the town square and talked about their wedding plans. As E.J. and Sami sat down in the café, Sami nervously looked around and whispered that she was uncomfortable. E.J. told Sami to concentrate on him and talk. After Sami called home to check on the kids, she worried aloud what their children would think of what they had done.

Lucas approached their café table and asked them if they had seen Allie and Jordan. Sami was annoyed that Lucas had left Allie with Jordan. With an impatient wave, Lucas said that he had needed to run an errand.

Will met with Sonny in the square to talk about the hearing. When Gabi walked by, Sonny angrily asked why Gabi had not told them about the court date. "I'm sorry, but it'll be okay," Gabi said. Across the way, Kate watched Gabi talk to Sonny and Will. Nearby, Ben walked through the square and stopped as he saw Abigail across the way. Julie sat down at the café as Rafe entered the square.

As Rafe gazed lovingly across the square at Jordan walking with Allie, Allie looked up and started to scream. The crowd turned to look and saw a bloody Nick stumble out of the park and into the town square next to Julie. Julie cried out, and Nick fell to the ground. As Julie hugged Nick, Rafe called 9-1-1. Nick stared at the crowd and pointed.

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