Todd, Téa and Kelly
Kelly rants to Todd about how Blair doesn't care about anyone but herself and that Blair is jealous of Kelly's relationship with Ian. That's why she's come to tell Todd everything she knows. Todd is not happy when Kelly informs him that Blair is working together with Max. They are both after Ian's money, Kelly explains. Téa tries to calm Kelly down and learn everything that Kelly knows, "what exactly does Blair want?", she asks. Blair wants Ian and she's using The Sun to help her get it, she's working out a plan to steal The Sun right out from under Todd.
That's it, Blair's after The Sun? I knew that already, Todd tells her. Téa explains that she was on the dock earlier that evening and saw members of The Sun's staff on Ian's yacht for a meeting with Ian and Blair. Todd breaks the news, none too gently, that he saw Ian and Blair kissing when he visited the yacht earlier. Téa glares at Todd to get him to shut up and reassures Kelly that anyone can see that Ian cares about her very much. Kelly says that Ian insists that he's onto Blair and isn't fooled by her, but Kelly isn't so sure. Téa tells her that men like Ian (and Todd, who gives Téa a look, but says nothing) think that they can handle women like Blair, but she and Kelly know better. Keep Blair from delivering on her promise, Téa suggests, then Ian will have no reason to continue business with Blair.
Kelly goes on to reveal more details of Blair's plan, the 10% raise they are offering and the profit sharing plan. Todd wants to know if Briggs was at the meeting, but Kelly can't say for sure, she didn't hear his name mentioned, but Blair was very smug about the whole thing, like she'd gotten all the major people on-board. Téa promises Kelly that she and Todd will keep Blair from digging her claws any deeper into Ian or The Sun. Téa thanks Kelly for coming and shows her out. Todd holds onto his temper remarkably well until Kelly leaves, but once the door closes behind her, he loses it. He picks up a large vase and is about to break it until Téa rushes over and makes him put it down. He then switches to the sofa pillows, throwing them and kicking them, threatening to rip Blair's heart out, tear it into little pieces and shove it down her throat. Téa watches his rage, staying out of the way, but not seeming scared of him or concerned about her safety. All of Todd's rage is directed at Blair, she knows how much this paper means to him and she's using it to hurt him. "Blair has declared war, and when it's over and I've won, she will be dead", Todd swears.
After a little more pillow throwing and stomping, Todd heads toward the vases on the mantle, but Téa steps in and stops him. He doesn't really wish Blair dead, he says, then he wouldn't have the pleasure of hearing her scream. Todd's first impulse is to find out who went to the meeting and fire them. Téa tells him that's a wonderful idea, then they'll go straight to Ian and Blair. Todd insists that Briggs couldn't be involved in this, they couldn't all walk out on him. Why not, Téa asks, Todd's practically invited them to hate him, why would they feel any loyalty at all? Because I pay them. Money isn't enough, Téa tells him. "Apparently not, you walk out on me on a regular basis", Todd replies. Téa suggests he has all the tact of a sledgehammer when it comes to these things. Todd pounds a book on the desk in frustration, but Téa quiets him down. There's an art to management, she says. "Give me some credit, there's a reason that I manage the way I manage". "You're a sadist?", Téa suggests, only partly joking. "Well... no, those little workers, they need a common enemy to unite them, and I'm it". I'll tie them all to their desks, Todd decides. There's only one thing Todd can do to get them to stay, Téa tells him, give them more money, that's all he has to offer.
"You want me to reward them for their treachery? You know, If I'd know it was going to cost me this much, I might actually have tried to be nice to them!" Téa seriously doubts that. Todd agrees to give them the raise, but is really torn about the profit sharing, it means giving them some say in the way he runs the newspaper. Todd's not only going to have to match Ian and Blair's offer, but better it, she reminds him. Blair is going to pay for this, Todd promises. Téa tells him not to think about it and just do it, as soon as possible. Todd wants to wait until the regular staff meeting tomorrow to bring it up. Téa argues at first, but then apologizes and agrees with Todd's reasoning that if he tries to start doing it now, someone might tip off Blair. Téa's quick change of mind startles Todd. Téa acknowledges when it comes to planning, he's a master, it's just people he has trouble with. "Thanks", Todd grudgingly accepts the compliment. He supposes now Téa wants a raise too for her help. Téa just wants to keep Blair out of their lives, she's their common enemy. Maybe fighting against her can bring this family together, Téa suggests, hesitantly touching his shoulder. Todd, for once, doesn't move away from her touch.
Kevin, Cassie and Dorian
Cassie's sitting alone in the dark with a few candles lit when Kevin arrives home from work. "What did your mother do this time?", he asks when he notices her sitting there. Actually, it's not about her mother this time, this was her and Andrew's anniversary. Cassie takes all the blame for the failure of the marriage, she wasn't the woman Andrew thought he married. For that matter, she wasn't the woman she thought he married either. "So who are you?", Kevin asks. I'm the little girl who was abandoned because her mother was afraid she would hurt her. It's no wonder that I have a hard time feeling lovable, I probably can't even recognize love, Cassie says, "Like mother, like daughter".
Kevin tells her that's not true, she didn't learn everything she knows about love from her mother. All anyone has to do is watch her with River to see how much Cassie loves him. That's different, Cassie tries to claim. No it's not, Kevin insists. She faked her love with Andrew, Cassie says, and sometimes I wonder if I..... Cassie doesn't finish her sentence. Kevin gently kisses her. "You're not", he says and leads her over to sit down on the couch with him. He puts his arms around her and holds her close. Don't you ever get scared about us, she asks. Sometimes, he admits, but everyone gets scared sometimes. He recalls his marriage to Lee Ann, he messed it up because he wasn't ready for marriage or fatherhood. He sees it as a learning experience, maybe that's what Cassie's marriage to Andrew was, too. But how do we know that our relationship isn't a learning experience for something else, too, Cassie asks, worried.
Kevin thinks that Cassie is being far too hard on herself. He thinks that she should let her anger out sometimes, it's OK to be mad at Dorian for abandoning her. It was Dorian that took the easy way out, if she had just faced up to everything before, none of this would be happening now and Cassie might have grown up with her mother with her. Dorian's still hiding from the truth, Cassie says, but Cassie needs to know the truth. Kevin changes the subject, he wants Cassie's help with the Dr. Dougherty story. Actually, he just wants her, he says as he gives her a big kiss.
As Cassie and Kevin are working, there's a knock on the door. It's Dorian, wanting to see Cassie. Kevin tries to get rid of her, but Dorian won't take no for an answer. She asks Kevin to leave them alone, which he reluctantly does, and only after Cassie asks him to go. Dorian tells Cassie that Mel has left her.
Mel promised that he'd never leave her, but he's done it anyway. Instead of giving sympathy, Cassie tells Dorian that she makes it very hard for people sometimes. Dorian doesn't understand why everyone is being so cruel to her. Maybe we're dishing out a little reality and you're finally getting in touch with it, Cassie tells her. Dorian had to build up walls to survive for so long, Cassie continues, as far as she can see, no one's gotten through them and Dorian is fighting like hell to keep them there. Téar down the walls, Cassie begs. It might be too late for Dorian and Mel, but it's not too late for Dorian and Cassie. Cassie's connected to Dorian for good and if Dorian goes down, she'll go down with her. Save us both, Cassie begs. Cassie wants her to face this darkness that she keeps running from, Cassie wants Dorian to be on her side for once. Dorian insists that she's always given Cassie unconditional love. That's not true, you abandoned me, Cassie reminds her, rather than deal with whatever it is that drove her. It was an act of fear, cowardice, Dorian needs to get it out before it consumes her. If Dorian thinks that Cassie will be sorry when that happens, she's wrong, Cassie will finally be free. Dorian leaves and Cassie sits on the steps, crying.
Bo and Nora
Bo is sure that R.J. is responsible for the kidnapping of Max's twins and by working with him, Nora is making it impossible for Bo to protect her. He loves her too much to have anything happen to her. Nora once again tries to explain to Bo that she will be working with Jacara and Rachel, not with R.J. She will not let her guard down around R.J. and at the first sign of trouble, she will back out of her arrangement and take Rachel with her. Nora suggests a compromise, not to even talk about R.J. Bo agrees, he's really tired of all of this. "Let's go home, Red", he says and gives Nora a hug.
Viki, Dorian and Mel
Viki opens the door to let Dorian in and Dorian is instantly on the offensive. "You just love this, don't you", Dorian accuses. Viki tells her to get off of it, things are bad enough as they are. "If he landed in your bed, yes", Dorian snaps at Viki. Viki really doesn't think that seeing Dorian is what Mel needs right now, she tells Dorian about Mel's adventures the night before. Dorian, being Dorian, ignores Viki's advice and heads up the stairs to go see Mel.
Dorian finds Mel upstairs in Viki's bedroom, dressed in someone's (Sloan's?) clothes. Dorian asks why he didn't call her. He wanted to give his boss the chance to fire him first, he replies. Instead, she brought him there and fed him and gave him some clothes to wear. Dorian asked him to go and that's exactly what he did, although he later chose the wrong way to deal with the situation. So, now I'm a "situation", Dorian asks, annoyed. Dorian's saved him from himself many times in their relationship, Mel explains. He was trying to do the same for her, but he obviously wasn't capable of it. Dorian has a different view of things. She feels that he dragged her into it and then, at the point that she most needed him, he quit on her. You told me that you wanted me to leave you alone, and I did the best I could, Mel corrects her. Dorian less than thrilled that Mel's "best" led him to Viki's bedroom. "Dorian, you can't kick me out, and then say I'm abandoning you", Mel tries to reason with her. The reasoning is completely lost on Dorian. "So you are abandoning me", she accuses. "No!", Mel practically yells, frustrated. But he did fail her, and that's what bothers him. Dorian tried to tell him that she didn't want to go back there, she reminds him. And now you're stuck there, he replies, and I'm stuck with you. Dorian feels that he's giving her an ultimatum, either she goes to Canton and faces her past or he will continue to drink.
Mel denies that there is any ultimatum. In fact, he's through, she can do whatever she wants to, he can't help her anymore. Dorian wants them to leave together and go to her place or his place, close the door to the outside world and discover again what they had together. It's not going to work, Mel says, they are not going to be able to help each other, he thinks they need to spend time apart. "So, you are leaving me", says Dorian.
Mel's not leaving her, he insists, there's no one else, he just can't keep trying to save her anymore, she's going to have to do it on her own. She's done almost everything in her life alone, Dorian replies, she learned from when she was a little girl that she can't depend on anyone. It made her strong. Mel, on the other hand, dives into a bottle every time things don't go his way. Mel doesn't argue with her on that point. Dorian thinks that the whole thing is a bluff, that he's threatening her with walking away if she doesn't rip open her guts and let everyone take a look. That's not true, Mel tells her, all he wants is for her to be whole and free from pain, because he loves her. Dorian sees that as the ultimate manipulation. If that's what she thinks, than she's far beyond his reach, Mel says. Dorian leaves without saying another word and has to walk down to face Viki alone. Viki asks is Mel alright? Why wouldn't he be, he's had all your tender, manipulative care, Dorian says, nastily. You finally got him where you want him, upstairs in your bed, wallowing in your enabling pity. Dorian warns Viki that she doesn't want her pity, why is it that when her life comes tumbling down around her, Viki is always somehow there? "I lose the best thing I ever had, and it happened in your bedroom", is Dorian's parting shot as she closes the front door behind her. Viki goes upstairs to see how Mel is doing.
Mel said one thing and Dorian heard another, Mel explains to Viki. He didn't end their relationship, just his deluded attempt to be her savior. He's made a mess of things, he's hurt her badly. Yes, you have, Viki agrees, but Dorian probably set him up. Viki did the same thing to those around her when she was trying not to face her past. Viki in the end had to face her past alone, maybe Dorian has to do the same thing, Viki suggests. What if she doesn't come out the other side, Mel wonders. Then you'll probably lose her, says Viki, but if she doesn't try at all, he'll lose her anyway. So I have no choice, Mel says. Viki's not sure, do we get to choose the people we love or is it all part of some great plan we can't hope to understand?