At the Horton Town Square, Gabi shredded a paper napkin into tiny pieces while complaining to Eli, "I just don't [know] when Abigail's gonna get it through her head that I have moved on. I don't want to be with Chad, okay? I'm happy. I really -- I'm happy. I am." Unconvinced, Eli wondered if Gabi would prefer a cloth napkin.
Gabi sighed as she set aside the remains of her napkin. She apologized to Eli for her foul mood but maintained that, generally speaking, she really was happy -- or would be if people would start respecting that she was sick of talking about Chad and Abigail. "I just want to relax and have fun," she stressed.
"Maybe this will help," Eli said before giving Gabi a kiss. When they heard a cell phone chiming nearby, they pulled away from each other and realized that Chad was watching them. He fumbled with the device as he greeted them, trying to sound casual. "Nice night," he pointed out. "It was," Eli replied.
Chad stammered out an apology for the interruption. Eli grumbled that it was hard to find privacy in Salem. Gabi voiced similar complaints then wondered if Eli would like to accompany her to a place where they could be alone together. Chad awkwardly reached out to help Gabi with her purse as he watched her stand to leave with Eli.
Meanwhile, Eli's cell phone chimed. After apologetically explaining to Gabi that someone from the FBI was trying to contact him, Eli stepped aside to answer the call. "That's -- that's getting -- you and Eli are getting kind of serious, huh?" Chad observed once the coast was clear. Gabi said that was none of Chad's business. He insisted that he hadn't been trying to pry; he had simply been trying to be a friend. "We're not friends, Chad, remember?" she pointed out. As he tried to stammer out an objection, she forged ahead, asking him to stay away from her so things wouldn't be harder than they already were.
As Chad started to leave, Gabi's purse fell to the ground. He picked it up for her before continuing on his way, turning back to get one last look at her as he retreated from the town square. She wrapped a hand around the remains of her napkin and squeezed tightly as she recalled happier times with him -- as well as the night he had told her that he wanted to cut ties with her so he could move on with Abigail.
When Eli returned and wondered where Gabi wanted to go for privacy, she admitted that she was having second thoughts about that. "You were trying to make Chad jealous," Eli realized. She apologetically admitted that although she really did like Eli, she still needed more time to get over Chad. "I am a very patient man," Eli assured her.
Gabi guessed that Eli was used to getting the girl in the end, but he clarified that he had been turned down before; in fact, Rihanna had once rejected him, explaining that she only dated guys who worked in the music industry. "Are you a 'love 'em and leave 'em' kind of guy?" Gabi asked.
Eli insisted that he wasn't, adding that his mother had raised him to respect women and be straight with them. Gabi said she liked Valerie, who seemed like a cool woman. Eli admitted that although his mother had given him a good childhood, it was hard to be grateful to her in light of the revelation that his biological father could have been in the picture all along if she had simply made different choices. Gabi started to point out that Valerie had never meant to hurt Eli, but when he reminded her of what she had said earlier about being sick of talking about Chad and Abigail, she took the hint and assured him, "Not another word."
Later, Eli tried to talk to Gabi about their next date. She feigned uncertainty about wanting to go on another date with him, but when he jokingly suggested that it might be best for him to cut his losses and move on, she dropped the act and wondered what he had in mind. He told her that he had read something online about an impending dance contest at Club TBD. She doubted that she would be allowed to participate, since her brother owned the place. "That sounds like an excuse," he observed before starting some music on his cell phone and challenging her to prove that she knew how to dance.
After the impromptu dance-off, Eli and Gabi each acknowledged that the other had some serious moves. "[But] the winner's obvious," Gabi added. "Me," Eli concluded, just as Gabi said the same thing. Laughing, she conceded that he was indeed the true winner. "I know," he said, beaming as he wrapped his arms around her.
Dario ran into Abigail in the park and realized that she was upset about something. After telling Dario about her earlier encounter with Gabi, Abigail admitted that she had tried to call Chad earlier but had hung up before he had answered. She insisted that it had been a mistake to dial his phone number in the first place, reasoning, "I can't keep changing my mind; [I] ended [our] marriage, so it's over, and it's better for both of us that way."
"Sounds like you're trying pretty hard to convince yourself of that," Dario observed, adding that Abigail seemed really unhappy. She admitted that she didn't want to move on; she insisted, however, that she had to because Chad belonged with Gabi, whose relationship with Eli wasn't going to work out because it was just a rebound thing. "You don't know that," Dario protested.
"I do," Abigail countered, reasoning that Chad and Gabi's feelings for each other had been strong enough to ruin a marriage and were therefore not just going to suddenly go away. Dario gently argued that Abigail had only herself to blame for the ruination of her marriage, since she was, after all, the one who had chosen to end it.
"Because I'm not stupid!" Abigail stressed, explaining that she had ended things with Chad because he clearly had a stronger connection with Gabi, who had always been his true equal and had never needed him to save her from herself. She added that even if things didn't work out between Chad and Gabi, she was better off without Chad because she deserved someone who loved her with his whole heart.
Later, at Club TBD, Dario and Abigail toasted to her newfound independence. Chad soon arrived for a meeting with Kate and noticed that Dario and Abigail were clearly enjoying each other's company. Chad interrupted to find out why Abigail had called him earlier. "I must've pocket-dialed," she claimed with a shrug.
Chad asked to talk to Abigail privately, but she insisted that they had already talked enough for one day. When Chad tried to change Abigail's mind, Dario jumped in to back her up. "This is between me and my wife," Chad told Dario. "Still calling her your wife, huh?" Dario observed. "Well, we're still married," Chad reasoned.
Abigail tried to put an end to the conversation, but Dario ignored her, asking Chad, "What is your idea of marriage, huh?" Sick of listening to Dario, Chad asked Abigail to meet him outside then started to walk away. Dario stood and told Chad to leave Abigail alone. Chad shoved Dario against the bar and prepared to take a swing at him, but Abigail quickly intervened, and Kate rushed over to help her.
After convincing Chad to leave the club, Kate followed him outside. "You did that, didn't you? Right? You wanted me to see them together!" he snapped, realizing why she had asked him to meet her at the club. She admitted that he was right, explaining, "I was hoping that if you saw Abigail and Dario together, maybe you would begin to accept [that] Abigail has moved on -- [and that] you need to do the same."
Meanwhile, inside the club, Abigail admonished herself, acknowledging that things wouldn't have gotten out of hand if she had just agreed to talk to Chad privately when he had first made the request. "God, I just hope he didn't think we were on a date," she added with a sigh, fearing that Chad might assault Dario in a jealous rage if he got the wrong impression about what he had witnessed.
Dario insisted that he could take Chad with one arm tied behind his back. "[And] if you know that we're just friends, [why] the hell do you care what anybody else thinks?" he asked. She apologetically acknowledged that she had been making a point of stressing that she was just his friend a bit too often lately. She explained that she was simply trying to avoid giving him false hope.
Dario assured Abigail that unless she expressly stated someday that she wanted more out of their relationship, he would never think of her as anything other than a friend. She thanked him for understanding then excused herself. After she left the club, he wistfully recalled a dance they had shared together back when he had been tricking her into giving him lessons.
Sonny and Paul entered Lyle's hotel room and demanded to know where Deimos was. Lyle was reluctant to answer any questions without direct orders from Victor, but when Sonny drew a gun, cocked it, and pressed it against Lyle's chest, Lyle gave up Brady and Nicole's address and revealed that Deimos knew it, too.
After Sonny and Paul left, Lyle received a visit from Deimos, who was furious to learn about what had happened before his arrival. Lyle was worried that Deimos might kill him for sharing Brady and Nicole's address with Sonny and Paul, but Deimos admitted, after giving the matter some thought, that he could probably make the unexpected development work to his advantage.
Brady weakly protested that Xander was supposed to be dead. "What can I say? I'm a survivor -- due, in no small part, to this lovely lady right here. She's my motivation," Xander replied as he glared at Nicole. Xander told Nicole that they had unfinished business. Nicole begged Xander to leave Holly with Brady and Tate and call for an ambulance so Brady would survive the gunshot wound, promising that if he granted her requests, she would give him whatever he wanted. Xander dismissively insisted that he didn't care about Brady or any other member of the Kiriakis family.
When Brady reached for Xander's leg, Xander irritably smacked the butt of his gun against Brady's head, knocking Brady out. Nicole rushed to Brady's side and tearfully urged him to fight to stay alive. "He was living on borrowed time, anyway, with that heart transplant. Wait, who was the donor? That's right -- it was your fiancé, Daniel, so tragically killed in that car accident. I have to say, Nicole, I think you might be cursed," Xander mused.
When Sonny and Paul arrived a short time later, Xander, Nicole, and Holly were gone. Paul checked Brady's pulse and confirmed that he was still alive. Sonny rushed off to take care of Tate, who was crying in another room, while Paul applied pressure to Brady's gunshot wound with one hand and called for an ambulance with the other.
Deimos was delighted when Xander showed up at his hotel room with Holly. Xander assured Deimos that he hadn't harmed Nicole, who was still out cold in the trunk of his car, having been forced to inhale chloroform. Xander admitted that Brady hadn't fared as well, but Deimos wasn't particularly concerned about that, reasoning that collateral damage was to be expected.
Xander was surprised to learn that Sonny and Paul were in town. Deimos assured Xander that it wasn't going to be a problem. "The original plan was that I was gonna rescue Nicole from you here in Canada, but now that the cavalry has arrived, we're gonna have to have a change of venue," Deimos continued. Deimos instructed Xander to take Nicole and Holly back to his private island in Greece, adding, "I'm not sure of the time frame yet, but what'll happen eventually is this: I'm gonna track you all down, and I'm going to save Nicole and her dear Holly, [which] will, in turn, win me her heart."
Xander warned that Nicole seemed to be head over heels in love with Brady. Deimos wasn't happy to hear that but reasoned that Nicole had only fallen in love with Brady because Brady had swooped in to play the part of her hero -- a role that he would soon be playing instead. "You know, the funny thing is, Maggie's the one that made me realize that that was the only way to win her back," Deimos added with a chuckle.
Xander wondered if he, like Brady, was expendable in Deimos' eyes. Deimos insisted that if he had wanted to get rid of Xander, he would have done so months earlier. Deimos stressed that he valued loyalty above everything else and therefore didn't have a problem with Xander -- who, unlike Brady, had never betrayed him. Deimos warned, however, that he would turn on Xander in an instant if Xander ever harmed Nicole or Holly.
Brady awoke in a hospital and wondered where Tate, Nicole, and Holly were. Sonny and Paul assured Brady that Tate was fine; they admitted, however, that they had no idea where Nicole and Holly were. They expressed skepticism when he named Xander, not Deimos, as the person who had shot him and taken off with Nicole and Holly, but he insisted that he wasn't wrong about that.
Deimos soon arrived and claimed that he had gone to Brady and Nicole's place in search of them and had learned from a neighbor that Brady had been rushed to the hospital in an ambulance. Deimos demanded to know where Nicole and Holly were then feigned disbelief when Sonny and Paul reported that Xander had taken off with them after shooting Brady.
Deimos insisted that he had killed Xander months earlier. "Evidently, you didn't do a very thorough job," Paul countered. Sonny, Paul, and Brady were skeptical of Deimos' story, but Deimos insisted that he was only in Canada to help Nicole -- and that they would have to trust him if they wanted to find Nicole and Holly before Xander did anything to them.
Joey met up with Steve in the park and talked about their plans to go to a baseball game. Steve was disappointed that Tripp would not attend the game with them. With a sigh, Steve worried aloud that Tripp might never want to reconcile with him. Joey complained that his guilt over Ava was eating him alive.
"You're being punished because of something I did!" Joey yelled. Steve asked Joey to let him take the punishment because the situation with Ava was his fault. Steve lamented that he had not done more to stop Ava sooner. As Joey shook his head in frustration, an emotional Steve begged Joey to let him continue to take the blame.
Through tears, Joey said he would never forget what Steve had done for him. Steve said he was thankful that he had been able to help Joey. "Who knows? Maybe one day your brother will give me a chance to be there for him too?" Steve said.
At the loft, Jade asked Tripp why he was in a bad mood. Tripp said he was looking forward to moving in with Jade. Suspicious, Jade asked Tripp why he seemed annoyed. Tripp said he could not stop thinking about what Jade had said to him. Tripp asked Jade who Steve had been protecting when he had killed Ava. Jade explained that she had been referring to Steve's family. When Tripp noted that the motivation Jade offered was counter to Steve's explanation that he had killed Ava on orders from the ISA, Jade said that Steve had had more than one reason to kill Ava.
As Tripp fumed, Jade suggested that Tripp was better off not knowing more about what had happened to Ava. Jade shared that she would have been better off if she had not learned that her parents had been forced to have her and had regretted it. Jade added that despite helping her father with his liver, he had still tossed her aside. Shaking his head, Tripp said he wanted to know the whole truth about his mother's death. Jade urged Tripp to let it go. "Maybe I should," Tripp muttered to himself.
After wrapping up the last of her packing, Jade waited on the sofa for Joey to return home. When Jade gave her key to Joey, she apologized for taking so long to leave. Joey asked Jade if she was moving out with extra items. Smirking, Jade said Claire knew where to find her if she wanted her shirt back. Jade said she had left the last box of cookies hidden in the closet for Joey.
Worried, Joey reiterated his concern about Jade moving in with Tripp. Jade told Joey not to worry and that even after she had slipped in her conversation with Tripp, she did not think Tripp suspected anything about Steve's story. Panicked, Joey asked what Jade had said to Tripp. When Jade told Joey what she had said, Joey noted that if Tripp had been asking questions, then he had not accepted Steve's story. Jade swore she would not tell Tripp the truth.
At the DiMera mansion, Chad told Kate about an amulet of Ramses that was available for sale. Kate was pleased to see Chad smiling. When Kate asked about Abigail's influence on the artifacts trafficking business, Chad said that Abigail had a say in the company but that he would make the decision on dealing for the amulet. With a grin, Chad said the amulet was worth $20 million and that it was cursed.
After Kate finished laughing, Chad explained that there was a history of death associated with the owners of the amulet. Kate said she was not bothered by the curse. When Chad mentioned that Andre was superstitious, Kate countered that Andre was traveling and could not be consulted. With a smile, Chad called his contact, Gregor, and learned that the amulet was in transit to the Kiriakis island in Greece.
In the town square, Abigail excitedly told Jennifer that she was on her way to her first day at the police station. Abigail said she felt "free." Thrilled, Jennifer wished her daughter luck. Abigail said she was pleased that she had been able to secure an apartment and a job on her own. When Abigail noted that she was on her way to drop Thomas off at daycare, Jennifer offered to watch her grandson and then drop Thomas off with Chad.
After Abigail left, Jennifer fussed over Thomas. While walking by, Steve greeted Jennifer, and he stopped to chat. Steve told Jennifer about his relationship with his new son, and Jennifer listened supportively. Steve confided that he was pleased that Tripp had bonded with Joey and Kayla, even if Tripp had rejected him. Jennifer reminded Steve of how upset he had been when he had first learned that Jack was his brother. With a nod, Steve noted that he had accepted Jack, and he hoped Tripp would accept him.
Steve asked Jennifer about Abigail, and Jennifer expressed her concern for her daughter and grandson. "I just have to love them through it," Jennifer said. Steve agreed. After her talk with Steve, Jennifer took Thomas over to the DiMera mansion to drop him off with Chad. Chad jumped to his feet when he saw Jennifer arrive with Thomas. When Chad asked about Abigail, Jennifer said that Abigail was busy at work on her first day at the police station. Confused, Chad raised a quizzical eyebrow.
Jennifer explained that Abigail had intended to drop Thomas off, but Jennifer had been eager to spend some time with Thomas and had made the drop-off. With a nod, Chad expressed his concern about shuttling Thomas between homes. Jennifer agreed. Jennifer added that she believed that Abigail and Chad would work things through once Abigail worked through her need to exert her independence. Chad and Jennifer talked about Dario, and Jennifer said she did not think that Dario would sway Abigail away from Chad. Jennifer asked Chad to give Abigail space because she believed that Abigail would return to Chad in time.
In the interrogation room at the precinct, Lani used her phone to set up a meeting with Snake. Lani then called the commissioner and asked him to meet with her. When J.J. entered the room, J.J. urged Lani to take some time off to deal with her feelings about her attack. J.J. said he believed that Lani's cover was blown because Snake had not reached out to her. Averting her eyes, Lani shrugged. J.J. said he was relieved that Lani would not have to deal with Snake anymore.
After J.J. left to take a call, Commissioner Raines entered the interrogation room. Lani informed Raines that Snake had called to set up a meeting. Lani asked Raines for permission to meet with Snake, but he expressed concern that Lani was walking into a trap. Worried, Raines asked Lani to take backup with her. When Lani refused to take J.J., Raines offered to accompany Lani.
In the bullpen of the precinct, Abigail was working as a receptionist when J.J. greeted her. Abigail shoved a folder at J.J. and asked him to finish his paperwork. With a groan, J.J. wished Abigail a happy first day. As Abigail walked away, Lani joined J.J. at his desk. J.J. said he was going to follow some leads, and Lani said she could not join him because she needed to finish her report. After Lani walked away, J.J. worried aloud to Abigail that Lani was still pursuing Snake. J.J. confided that he had planted a tracking app on Lani's phone.
J.J. picked up a headset tuned to the frequency that Raines had been using before he had left the precinct. Abigail urged J.J. not to get involved, but J.J. said he needed to make sure that Lani was safe. Abigail asked J.J. not to play the hero. "It's my job, sis," J.J. said as he left.
Abigail returned to her filing, and she was alone when Tripp stopped by to ask about a case file. Upon hearing the name Ava Vitali, Abigail's mouth fell open. Abigail introduced herself to Tripp as his cousin. With a nod, Abigail said she would look into retrieving Ava's case file.
After locating the file, Abigail made a copy for Tripp and gave it to him. Tripp eagerly flipped through the pages. Confused, Tripp asked why Ava had been in the hospital. Abigail told Tripp that Ava had attempted suicide and had staged it to frame Kayla for murder. Abigail explained that Kayla had found Ava and had rushed her to the hospital. With a furrowed brow, Tripp asked Abigail if she was sure that Kayla had told the truth. "What reason would she have to lie?" Abigail asked.
On her lunch break, Abigail went over to the DiMera mansion to drop off Thomas' stuffed bunny. Chad asked Abigail about her new job, but she was reluctant to say much. Chad apologized for his behavior in Club TBD. As Abigail thanked Chad for his apology, Chad interrupted to say that he and Abigail needed to communicate better for Thomas' sake. Abigail agreed. Chad said he supported Abigail's decision to distance herself.
"You need to remember one thing. I love you. With all my heart. There is only you. There will only ever be you. You're my wife, my best friend, and my partner. And I hope some day you believe that again. And when you do, I will be right here. And I hope that you give me a chance to make you happy again some day," Chad said.
In the town square, Tripp overheard Steve across the square, talking to Kayla on the phone. When Steve told Kayla that he would do anything for her, Tripp frowned. Tripp looked at the file on his mother's murder.
In the park, Raines fitted Lani with a hidden microphone and reminded her to flee once she secured Snake's confession that he had drugged her. Lani nodded yes. Raines promised to send in the cavalry and put Snake away. Lani met up with Snake in a room at the Salem Inn while Raines listened in from the park nearby. In an alley outside the inn, J.J. tuned in to the frequency that Raines was using, and he picked up Lani's conversation with Snake.
Lani asked Snake about how she had ended up disheveled in the park with no memory. With a wary glance, Snake said it did not matter what had happened the last time they had met. Lani said she wanted to know about the lost time. With a shrug, Snake said he had given Lani something to take the edge off. Though Lani had what she needed, she pushed Snake for more information about the drug he had used.
Snake reached into the dish in his bedside table and pulled out a bag that looked like it was filled with orange candy. Snake said it was called Halo. After placing a small amount in Lani's hand, Snake told her that she would want more. Lani said she had no issue pushing Halo on her clients but that she did not want to cloud her own judgment.
"I'm a girl who likes to make memories," Lani said. His face scowling, Snake told Lani that she did not have a choice about whether to take the drug or not. Lani attempted to defuse the situation by asking about the other girls that worked for him. Snake's arm shot out, and he grabbed Lani around the throat with one hand. As Lani struggled, Snake threw Lani back onto the bed and tore at her clothes. Lani fought back, and Snake discovered her hidden microphone.
"You a cop?" Snake growled. Raines and J.J. listened helplessly on their headsets as the scene unfolded in the hotel room. Raines ordered backup at the Salem Inn, and he rushed to intervene. J.J. cursed under his breath that Lani had met with Snake, and he rushed into the inn. In the hotel room, Snake held Lani at gunpoint. Lani asked to explain. Furious, Snake yelled at Lani to shut up. Snake threw the packet of halo at Lani and ordered her to take three pieces. Worried, Lani said that she would overdose. "That's the plan," said Snake.
J.J. rushes to save Lani from Snake
At the hospital, Gabi shared some new pictures of Arianna with Marlena, who promised to display them on her refrigerator. Meanwhile, nearby, Valerie assured Julie that her checkup had gone well. Valerie started to offer advice on ways to avoid future spikes in blood pressure, but Julie quickly interrupted, excusing herself with a promise to return for another checkup the following month.
After Marlena headed off with Valerie in search of food, Gabi blocked Julie's path and noted that it wasn't surprising that her checkup had gone well, since, after all, she had never been sick in the first place. "Bold talk from a convicted murderer," Julie countered. When Julie hinted that she planned to continue interfering in Gabi's blossoming relationship with Eli, Gabi threatened to tell him that Julie had faked her health scare.
At Club TBD, Dario gave Myron the green light to begin hacking another company -- a move that, according to Myron, would result in a much bigger payday than the Countess Wilhelmina attack.
Later, Dario reluctantly participated in a family meal with his siblings despite his continued issues with Rafe. When the brothers began arguing yet again about Rafe's role in Eduardo's arrest, Hope -- who had happily agreed to attend the gathering as Rafe's guest -- jumped in to defend Rafe's actions, telling Dario, "Don't you realize that it broke your brother's heart to arrest your father? Your pain, it's -- it's not any better, or deeper, or more important than his." Hope advised Dario to think long and hard before deciding to turn his back on Rafe.
When Gabi made it clear that she was also on Rafe's side, Dario reluctantly agreed to drop the matter, conceding that although he would always believe that what Rafe had done to Eduardo had been wrong, he could agree to disagree with the others on that particular subject. Needing a new topic of conversation, Dario turned his attention to Hope and began grilling her about her intentions toward Rafe. Gabi quickly joined the interrogation, wondering if Hope planned to make an honest man out of Rafe. Receiving no help whatsoever from Rafe, Hope carefully replied, "My intentions...are to be happy with him for as long as he'll have me."
Satisfied, Dario ordered a round of mescal for the table, explaining to Hope, "It is tradition in the Hernandez family, when someone makes a declaration such as you just did, to have a drink before the meal -- a real drink." Gabi helpfully added that sipping wasn't allowed. Hope eyed her shot of mescal warily then downed it in one gulp along with the Hernandez siblings, who each handled it much better than she did. As she coughed and reached for her glass of water, she was presented with a second shot of mescal that contained the drink's infamous worm. She reluctantly forced it, too, down her throat -- worm included.
After vowing to make the Hernandez siblings pay one day for what they had just put her through, Hope stepped aside with Gabi to look at some pictures of Arianna. Gabi apologetically admitted to Hope that neither Rafe nor Dario had ever actually eaten a mescal worm; they both simply liked to pretend that they had in order to trick other people into doing so.
Hope couldn't believe that Gabi had allowed her to fall for the trick. Laughing, Gabi reasoned with a shrug that no one had been around to stop her from falling for it. "[Just one more in] a huge list of things to hold against me," Gabi continued, assuming that Hope, like Julie, would never forgive her for killing Nick. Hope dismissed the concern, insisting that she was in no position to judge anyone.
Hope soon noticed that Dario was having a hushed conversation with someone. She casually asked Gabi to identify the person. "Oh, that's Myron Raditz. He is, like, some tech guy that Dario uses. I don't know. He's kind of like a genius," Gabi explained with a shrug. Hope observed that it looked like the men were discussing some big secret. Gabi joked that Myron had probably just figured out how to get Dario's computer to produce wine.
A short time later, Hope excused herself so she could meet with Julie to discuss some family plans. Before leaving, Hope vowed to make Rafe and Dario each eat a mescal worm the next time they all got together for a meal. Rafe was reluctant to accept a goodbye kiss from Hope after what she had just eaten, but he eventually gave in. As Hope left the club, Dario teasingly checked Rafe's teeth for bits of the worm.
Hope went to the Brady Pub for her meeting with Julie. While waiting for Julie to arrive, Hope contacted someone at the police station and received confirmation that Myron Raditz had a rap sheet. Julie entered the pub just as Hope was ending the call. Having heard Hope say something about felonies, Julie started asking questions -- and feigned disbelief when she learned that a Hernandez was employing a known criminal.
Hope reminded Julie that Rafe was a Hernandez, too. "And [he] is the exception to the rule, darling," Julie countered. Julie wondered what would happen if Dario turned out to be a criminal, just like most of the other members of the Hernandez clan. "Well...it would kill Rafe," Hope guessed with a worried sigh.
At the Salem Inn, Snake pressed his gun against Lani's forehead and forced her to swallow three doses of the Halo drug. As Lani started to feel the effects of the overdose, J.J. burst into the hotel room with his own gun drawn. Snake quickly put Lani in a chokehold and pressed his gun against the side of her head. When J.J. learned that Lani had been given an overdose of Halo, he reluctantly lowered his gun and kicked it aside to allow Snake to escape with her, believing that was the only way to ensure that Snake might let her go in time for her to seek medical attention.
As Snake was dragging Lani out of the hotel room, she slammed her elbow into his stomach, causing him to drop his gun. J.J. quickly pulled Snake away from Lani, who rushed into the bathroom to force the drugs out of her system. J.J. began fighting with Snake, but when Commissioner Raines arrived with another police officer, J.J. left Snake in their capable hands so he could check on Lani. With J.J.'s help, Lani staggered out of the bathroom and weakly placed Snake under arrest herself. An ambulance was en route to the Salem Inn, but J.J. didn't want to wait for it, so he picked Lani up and carried her out to his car.
While Eric and Jennifer were in the Horton Town Square, celebrating a successful Horton Center fundraiser, Victor began chastising them from a nearby table, disgusted that Eric was having a carefree time with Jennifer while Daniel was "six feet under" -- and that Jennifer was willingly associating with Eric despite what Daniel had once meant to her. Victor insisted that if Daniel were still alive, he would be just as upset with Eric for having driven drunk, but Eric disagreed, reasoning, "[Daniel] was about healing -- not only as a doctor, but as a person. He'd want me to lead my life dedicated to helping others heal, and I'm trying my best to do that."
Shortly after Abe joined Marlena, Roman, and Valerie at the Brady Pub for lunch, he received a text message about Lani's overdose. He rushed off to the hospital with Valerie, leaving Roman to fill Marlena in on the undercover investigation. The situation hit close to home for Roman and Marlena because of what they had gone through with Eric, prompting a discussion about how he had turned his life around. Roman thought Jennifer deserved credit for having helped Eric get back to a good place, but Marlena disagreed, arguing that Jennifer had been a bad influence on Eric in the past -- and still was.
"So our son deserves a second chance, but Jennifer doesn't?" Roman asked incredulously. Marlena reasoned that a relationship between two addicts was a recipe for disaster. Roman countered that whether Marlena liked it or not, the fact of the matter was that Jennifer was one of the few people who had actually proven to be capable of getting through to Eric. Roman suggested that Eric and Jennifer might be falling in love with each other, but Marlena didn't want to think about the possibility that the relationship had progressed to that point.
At the end of Eric's celebratory meal with Jennifer, he invited her to join him for another meal sometime -- one that had nothing to do with work matters. She accepted the offer then walked away with a big smile on her face.
Jennifer soon crossed paths with Marlena, who insisted that they needed to have a conversation about Eric. Marlena made it clear that she didn't think it was a good idea for Eric and Jennifer to be in a relationship with each other. "I'm keeping an eye on things -- I'm sure you know what that means -- but I'm not going to interfere," Marlena added. Jennifer said she understood and wasn't upset with Marlena for being direct with her because she knew what it was like to feel protective of a child. Marlena conceded that despite her concerns, she would always be grateful to Jennifer for having managed to get through to Eric when no one else had been able to.
After Jennifer walked away, Marlena received a phone call from Paul, who filled her in on what had happened to Brady. Meanwhile, Eric joined Roman at the Brady Pub and offered him a cheerful greeting. "Nice to see you smiling. Get some good news?" Roman asked. "In a way, yeah. You know, for the first time in a long time, I got a future -- [and] it's gonna be good," Eric replied.
At the hospital, Valerie informed Abe and J.J. that Lani's stomach had been pumped, and she had been put on a saline drip that was running through her system at full speed. Unfortunately, the overdose had done enough damage beforehand to leave Lani writhing in pain on her bed, to the point of needing to be placed in restraints. Valerie explained that she couldn't give Lani anything to lessen the pain because her system might not be able to handle it at that time. Valerie added that she had, however, reached out to various hospitals in Chicago for advice on how to treat a Halo overdose, since they already had weeks of experience with the drug.
Later, Raines arrived and reported, after asking for an update on Lani's condition, that the six missing prostitutes had been found with the help of information that had been gleaned from Lani's recorded conversation with Snake. Although all six prostitutes were still alive, Raines guessed that some of them might be wishing they were dead. "[Snake] had them so stoned out of their minds... This Halo, it was good for Snake at first; he kept his ladies so hooked [that] they had no will of their own [and] gave him every dollar they earned. The johns were hooked, as well. The problem was [that] it's such a destructive drug [that] it rendered them completely useless to Snake after a while, so he'd sequester them just long enough for them to dry out, [and then] he started that sick, twisted cycle all over again," Raines explained.
Abe started to lash out at Raines for having allowed Lani to go back to Snake after what had happened during their previous meeting. J.J. gently reminded Abe that Lani had known the risks. Abe insisted that it shouldn't have been Lani's call to make, but J.J. argued, "Of course it was her call. I didn't see it at first -- I was overly protective -- but, sir, if [she weren't] your daughter [and] my girlfriend, we would have let her make that call."
J.J. reasoned that Lani was a hero because she had knowingly put her life in danger to save other people's lives. "That's what cops do," he concluded with a shrug. Conceding the point, Abe admitted that he was proud of his daughter. "I just -- I can't lose her," he added with a worried sigh.
Later, J.J. went to check on Lani. She was asleep when he entered her room, but as he took a seat at her bedside, she opened her eyes and released a primal scream.
Nicole tries to escape from Xander's clutches
Steve joined Kayla at the Brady Pub and presented her with a single yellow rose, prompting her to wonder if he was about to deliver bad news and simply wanted to cushion the blow. As he was assuring her that wasn't the case, her cell phone began ringing. "It's Tripp. Are you sure nothing bad happened?" she asked. "Not that I know of," he maintained.
Tripp asked to meet with Kayla. She tried to convince him to join her at the pub, explaining that she was there with his father, but he insisted that he only wanted to talk to her. Steve was disappointed that Tripp didn't want to see him, but he was also pleased that Tripp was at least making a connection with Kayla. She promised Steve that she would continue trying to convince Tripp to give him a chance.
When Kayla joined Tripp in a secluded section of Horton Town Square a short time later, he explained that he had acquired the police report about his mother's murder and had learned from it that she had been killed in the hospital where she had been admitted after she had injected herself with something earlier that fateful night in an effort to frame Kayla for her death. He wondered why the Johnsons had left out that particular incident when they had filled him in on the various things his mother had done to cause trouble for them.
"It was already so hurtful, obviously, [for you] to know all these things about your mother; to unload more of her problems on you [just seemed] really unfair," Kayla explained. Tripp accepted that answer; however, with the incident no longer a secret, he wanted to hear about it from Kayla's perspective.
Kayla reported that she had returned home on the night in question and had found Ava passed out on the living room floor, next to a syringe that had contained the remaining traces of a drug that had later been identified as morphine. Tripp wondered how his mother had managed to get her hands on morphine without a prescription. Shrugging, Kayla replied, "I don't know. But she had connections, she had money, [and] you can get anything on the black market." Not wanting to believe that his mother had truly intended to end her life, Tripp optimistically suggested that she might have simply been trying to stage an attempted murder. Unable to confirm or deny the suspicion, Kayla told Tripp, "I couldn't begin to get inside [Ava's] mind. I can just tell you that she was jealous...and she hated me."
"Seems to me that you felt the same way about her," Tripp observed. Kayla admitted that she had, of course, been angry with Ava, who had repeatedly tried to hurt her as well as other members of her family. "I will protect my family with my life," Kayla stressed. "So will Steve?" Tripp guessed. "Yes," Kayla confirmed.
Kayla urged Tripp to give Steve a chance, stressing, "He will do anything for the people he loves." Tripp conceded that Steve did seem like that kind of guy. "Maybe I am putting too much of the blame on him," Tripp added. Thrilled, Kayla wondered if something she'd said had led Tripp to that conclusion. "Yeah. Yeah, you've really helped me a lot," Tripp replied.
Later, Kayla rejoined Steve at the Brady Pub and told him about her conversation with Tripp. Steve thanked Kayla for her help, believing that she had finally managed to get through to Tripp. Meanwhile, Tripp contacted Angelo and told him that Steve's story about Ava's death might have been fabricated to protect Ava's real killer -- Kayla.
Eric ran into Chloe in the town square and asked if she had given any thought to what he had said during their previous conversation. She confirmed that she had actually given his words a lot of thought. Although she had not yet made a decision, she promised to continue mulling over the idea of compromising with Nicole for Holly's sake, despite still believing that the child belonged with her, not Nicole.
After being transferred to Salem University Hospital, Brady awoke and found Paul standing at his bedside. Marlena soon arrived and asked Brady to fill her in on what had happened in Canada. With Paul's help, Brady explained everything to Marlena, who was shocked to learn that Xander was still alive. Brady wanted to start searching for Nicole right away, but Marlena insisted that he was too weak to leave the hospital at that time. "You've lost a lot of blood, [and because] you were shot in the chest, your lung collapsed. This all puts a great deal of stress on your heart, so you must take it easy," she stressed.
After leaving Brady's room, Paul went to the nurses' station, where Sonny and Deimos were in the middle of a heated conversation about what had happened in Canada. After Deimos walked away, Sonny told Paul, "He's part of this. I'm sure of it." Paul thought it would be best to focus on finding Nicole and Holly for the time being -- and he guessed that Steve and John might be able to help.
While Brady was telling a less-than-thrilled Marlena that he was in love with Nicole and had been building a happy life with her and the kids in Canada, Victor entered the room. Marlena excused herself so Victor could have some time alone with Brady. Victor grumbled, "You know, I had a whole lecture prepared for the next time I saw you, [but] then you went and got yourself shot. Screwed up my whole scenario."
"Give it to me anyway. I'm on the pain meds, [so] it might not be that bad," Brady joked, chuckling weakly. Sighing, Victor wondered if Brady could just explain why he always felt "so damn compelled" to rescue Nicole. "She's fun. She makes my life fun. I...gotta say, she's never boring," Brady answered with a shrug.
Brady added that he loved Nicole. "Oh, for crying out loud. I'm sure that's the pain meds talking," Victor dismissively replied. Brady guessed that Victor had taken risks once or twice himself in the name of love. Victor reluctantly conceded that Brady was right about that. Victor added that he could at least agree with Brady about one thing: Nicole was never boring. "[And if you] get yourself sent to prison for helping her, I guarantee you won't be bored [there]," Victor added. He decided that he would lecture Brady after he finished doing everything he could to keep Brady out of prison.
After Victor left, Eric entered the room -- with Chloe, who had insisted on tagging along when Eric had cut their conversation short after getting the heads-up from Marlena that Brady was in the hospital. Chloe was horrified to learn that Xander had kidnapped Holly. Chloe started to lash out at Brady, blaming him for the kidnapping, but Marlena soon entered the room and put a stop to the tirade.
After Chloe left with Marlena, Eric apologized to Brady for having been unable to stop Chloe from following him to the hospital. Brady admitted that Chloe hadn't said anything that he hadn't already told himself more than once. "I told Nicole that I would protect her, and I didn't. I thought all we had to worry about was the police arresting us," Brady added with a sigh.
As if on cue, a police officer arrived to question Brady about his role in Nicole's escape from Salem. Eric tried to protest that Brady was in no condition to talk to the police at that time, but Brady insisted that he wanted to get the interview over with as soon as possible, reasoning, "The sooner I talk, the sooner they can start looking for Holly and Nicole." Brady also declined to wait for a lawyer to arrive.
Meanwhile, Sonny joined Victor at the nurses' station and reported that a police officer had just entered Brady's room. Victor hoped that Brady would be smart enough to keep his mouth shut until Justin arrived.
Changing the subject, Victor raved that he was proud of Sonny and Deimos for the things they had each done to save Brady's life. "Don't lump me with [Deimos]," Sonny protested, adding that Victor's feelings of guilt about Deimos' time in prison were blinding him to who Deimos really was. Still convinced that it wasn't a coincidence that Deimos and Xander had shown up in Canada at the same time, Sonny guessed that Deimos' plan had been to send Xander after Nicole and Holly then swoop in at the last minute to stop Xander from kidnapping them -- a plan that Sonny and Paul had ruined. Sonny also suggested that if Xander hadn't shot Brady, Deimos would have. "Oh, you don't know that," Victor argued. "I'll tell you what I do know: Deimos is the plague incarnate. And I'm not giving up until I prove that to you," Sonny vowed.
Later, Victor found Deimos and confronted him about Xander's return from the dead. Deimos claimed that because he had shot Xander and had watched Xander fall into the river, he had naturally assumed that Xander was dead. Deimos added that if he had known that wasn't the case, he would have tracked Xander down and finished the job, since he knew that Xander was a threat to the entire Kiriakis family. "If Brady doesn't make it through this..." Victor began before letting his voice trail off. "I promise you, Victor, I will make Xander pay," Deimos replied.
Later, Chloe found Deimos in one of the break rooms and begged him to do whatever he could to find Holly. Deimos promised that he wouldn't rest until Nicole and Holly were back in Salem, safe and sound. After Chloe left, Deimos called Xander to get an update on how things were going in Greece.
Marlena tried to contact John to tell him about what had happened to Brady, but someone from the ISA informed her that no one knew where John was. Meanwhile, Paul joined Sonny in the town square and reported that Steve was doing everything he could to locate Xander's hiding place. Sonny insisted that Deimos couldn't be the one to find Nicole and Holly because he would just disappear with them in that case, whether they wanted to go with him or not. Back at the hospital, Brady begged Eric to find Nicole and Holly, knowing that Eric had more experience dealing with Xander than anyone else did.
Nicole was shocked when Xander revealed that he had taken her and Holly to an island in Greece. However, when Xander also revealed that Brady was still alive, she breathed a sigh of relief, knowing that Brady would be able to identify Xander as her kidnapper. "You're a Kiriakis, and you're in Greece. You don't think [the police will] put two and two together?" she reasoned. "I'm not worried," Xander replied with a shrug.
Nicole wondered what Xander was planning to do to her. He explained that he wanted to give her an opportunity to make good on the promises she had made back when she had been leading him on. She insisted that she had never made him any promises. Maintaining that she had, he warned that he would get her to submit to him one way or another. "I'm the one with all the power here, and I have lots of ways of making you do whatever I say," he added.
Deciding to try a different approach, Nicole sweetly assured Xander that he wouldn't have to slap her around to get her to do whatever he wanted her to do. She then changed the subject, informing him that Holly needed to be changed. He went to retrieve some supplies after warning Nicole that there was nowhere for her to run because the windows were barred and guards were stationed everywhere.
When Xander returned with the items a short time later, Nicole feigned clumsiness, scattering them on the floor. As he knelt to pick them up for her, she grabbed a nearby vase and smashed it over his head. She then rushed out of the room with Holly.
Brady's condition worsens
Hope and Rafe waited at the Brady Pub to meet Ciara's new boyfriend, Wyatt. Jennifer stopped by the table as Rafe cautioned Hope not to interrogate Wyatt. Jennifer laughed. Jennifer advised Hope to go easy on her daughter's new boyfriend because she had heard that Wyatt was a good guy. Switching the subject, Hope told Jennifer that she wanted to see Jennifer with a good guy. Jennifer pointed out that Hope was avoiding the subject, but Hope asked about Eric.
Jennifer said she was hopeful about her relationship with Eric. Hope said she believed that Eric and Jennifer were good for one another. Jennifer's phone beeped with a text. Gasping in shock, Jennifer told Hope and Rafe that Brady was in the hospital. Rafe made a phone call, and he shared the status update on Brady's condition with Hope and Jennifer.
At the loft, Wyatt and Theo played a video game as Ciara cheered them on. An annoyed Jade walked into the room and complained about the noise the group was making. Ciara remarked that Jade did not live there anymore. The group teased Wyatt about meeting Hope and Rafe, and Wyatt looked increasingly worried. Ciara assured Wyatt that her mom would like him.
Jade yelled that she was looking for her curling iron. With a shrug, Ciara said she had not seen it. Staring pointedly at Jade, Ciara asked her to leave. With a groan, Jade stomped out of the apartment. Claire chuckled. When Ciara looked at her, Claire commented that she had used Jade's curling iron earlier. Laughing, Claire and Ciara went into their room to help Claire prepare for her meeting with a music industry representative.
Alone in the living room, Theo asked Wyatt if he was prepared to meet Hope and Rafe. Wyatt said he was ready. When Theo offered to give Wyatt more tips, Wyatt said he did not need any more help. Theo warned Wyatt to be careful.
At the hospital, Brady pleaded with Eric to find Nicole for him, since he was stuck in a hospital bed. Reluctantly, Eric agreed. Eric said he wanted to make up for killing Daniel. Brady texted his security team and the pilot for his jet to let them know that Eric would be meeting with them to fly to Greece. Eric swore he would do everything in his power to find Nicole. Brady thought about him and Nicole discussing a life together when they'd been in Canada, and he started to cry.
At the nurses' station, Jennifer asked Valerie about Brady's condition. Valerie explained that Brady was stable. As Jennifer asked about visiting Brady, Eric exited Brady's room. While Valerie checked on Brady, Eric told Jennifer about Xander and about Eric's promise to Brady to find Nicole and Holly. Jennifer reminded Eric that Nicole was a kidnapper and that Eric would be considered an accessory if he helped Nicole. With a nod, Eric said he owed Nicole.
Ciara and Wyatt arrived at the pub, and Ciara introduced him to Hope and Rafe. Wyatt excitedly talked about the Cubs and how much he loved the pub. Hope appeared to be silently judging Wyatt. While Ciara gave Wyatt a behind-the-scenes tour of the pub, Rafe asked Hope what she was thinking. Hope admitted that Wyatt was nice, but she felt like Wyatt was hiding something. Hope said she wanted to make sure that Wyatt was not "too good to be true." Rafe grumbled, but Hope reminded him that he would act just as cautiously if Wyatt were dating Gabi. Rafe agreed.
When Wyatt and Ciara returned to the table, the group ate pie, and Wyatt offered to pay the check. Rafe was called away, leaving Hope and Ciara alone at the table. Excited to hear her mother's opinion, Ciara asked Hope what she thought about Wyatt. Hope said Wyatt was nice. Suspicious, Ciara asked Hope what she was actually thinking. Hope said she wanted Ciara to take her relationship slowly. Smiling, Ciara said she felt like she had known Wyatt for years. Ciara said she was happy. As Hope nodded, Ciara promised to move slowly with Wyatt.
At the loft, Claire returned home from her meeting in tears. Claire explained to Theo that the music executive had said that she showed promise but was not ready. Theo comforted his girlfriend, assuring her that she was talented. Theo urged patience, but Claire said she felt stuck. Confused, Theo asked Claire if she was happy living in the loft. Claire hugged Theo and told him that she loved their life together.
Theo said that Claire would one day be famous because she was special. Calmed, Claire curled up on the couch with Theo. Claire said she was thankful to have Theo in her life. With a grin, Theo said she would really be happy if he got her ice cream. Claire agreed. Theo opened the front door to leave on his ice cream run, and he found Jade standing there.
As Theo left, Jade entered the loft and announced that she was there to retrieve some food. Jade asked Claire why she had been crying. Claire shrugged. Jade surmised that Claire's meeting had not gone well, and Claire defensively asked Jade why she cared. Jade complimented Claire's singing and noted that Claire needed the right opportunity. With a groan, Claire said she was still not interested in Jade's suggestion to make a sex tape. Jade continued to talk about it, and Claire protested less and less.
After the dinner at the pub, Ciara and Wyatt walked to the park. Wyatt admitted that Hope was a little scary. Laughing, Ciara said that her mom was protective. Ciara said she thought that Hope liked Wyatt. Shifting nervously, Wyatt said he wanted to say something. When Ciara asked what was going on, Wyatt asked Ciara if she wanted to date exclusively. Thrilled Ciara said yes and kissed Wyatt. As the couple smooched on the bench, Theo walked by and saw them.
At the hospital, Rafe walked into Brady's hospital room and found him shifting restlessly in bed. Rafe announced that he was there to arrest Brady as an accessory to kidnapping and for aiding and abetting Nicole. Brady was upset and started gasping for air. Brady passed out, and the alarms on his machines sounded. Rafe cried out for help, and Valerie rushed into the room to respond to the alarms.
Rafe waited at the nurses' station for word on Brady. After stabilizing Brady, Valerie asked Rafe what he had discussed with Brady. Rafe admitted that he was there to arrest Brady. Frustrated, Valerie warned that Brady was in no condition to be moved because his body was rejecting his heart. Valerie said that Brady might not survive his gunshot wound.
In the town square, Jennifer and Eric made phone calls as they sat in the café. Eric scoured the Internet for information about Xander. Eric told Jennifer that the situation was too dangerous for her, but Jennifer insisted that she would help Eric find Nicole. After multiple fruitless phone calls, Eric called a former poker buddy of Xander's named Bruno, and he had a lead.
On a private island in Greece, Xander delivered Nicole and Holly to a room in a big house. Nicole asked for supplies for Holly, and Xander nodded yes. Nicole knocked over her bag. When Xander bent over to pick up the scattered items on the floor, Nicole grabbed a vase and hit Xander over the head. With Xander unconscious, Nicole scooped Holly up in her arms and searched the house for a phone or a way to escape.
After seeing guards outside the house, Nicole searched a desk and found a phone. As Nicole turned the phone on, a newly conscious Xander bellowed out Nicole's name. Nicole cracked open the patio door then she crouched with Holly in the corner. Xander took the bait when he saw the open patio door, and he rushed outside in pursuit. Nicole feverishly checked the phone for a connection, but there was no reception.
Xander returned and confronted Nicole. Furious, Xander took Holly away from her. Xander vowed to put Nicole where she belonged. After securing Holly in a separate room, Xander locked Nicole in a steel cage. Nicole pleaded for her daughter. Xander explained that Holly was with a nanny and would not be returned to Nicole. When Nicole apologized, Xander laughed at her. Xander left Nicole alone to think, and Nicole broke down in tears as she heard Holly crying down the hallway.