At the jewelry shop, the jeweler informs Eddie that the piece is undoubtably part of a very expensive collection. Eddie excuses himself to use the phone when he's paged. Paula enters the jewelry shop and immediately notices the brooch on the counter. Paula informs the jeweler that she's interested in wedding bands, as Eddie comes up from behind. Unaware that the woman in front of him is Paula, Eddie continues to ask the jeweler about the brooch. Turning, Paula admires the brooch; Eddie hastily covers that it's a family heirloom, and makes a quick exit. From the outside of the shop, Eddie watches as Paula checks out the rings.
At the Java Web, Ricardo tries to concentrate on finding a wedding site, but is distracted by the sounds of female frustration at the next computer keyboard. Rationalizing that since he's just engaged, but not married, why not help? The woman is the same sexy Cleopatra from the Valentine's Dance that had her eye on Ricardo. Although there is some flirting, Ricardo reveals his status as taken. Frustrated, Ricardo is unable to focus on his part of the wedding plans.
Back at Ricardo's place, Paula shows Ricardo brochures of some of the rings she saw. When Ricardo notes the lack of diamond size, he urges Paula to return to the jewelry shop and choose a ring that she wants, not one that she believes Ricardo can afford. Paula happily runs out to choose her ring, while Ricardo stays behind looking like a trapped animal. At the jewelers again, Paula is questioning the jeweler on the best methods of choosing a ring. Eddie turns up again outside and panics as he sees that Paula is taking notes.
When Paula returns, Ricardo confronts her with an idea. Since he can't handle the big wedding plans, what if they just elope? Back at his own place, a paranoid Eddie thinks back to his past few run-ins with Paula - all of them have Paula questioning Eddie's sudden wealth. Eddie begins to pack his gear bag...
Mark, Tiffany and Sean
After the disastrous lunch with Sean's family, Tiffany runs back to the abandoned day care center that she's been living in, unaware that Sean has trailed her there. When Sean asks in disbelief if she actually lives in the dump, Tiffany covers quickly by saying that she lives in El Segundo, and only comes to "this dump" to feed the stray animals. Reassured, Sean asks Tiffany to forget what his father said; Sean likes Tiffany for who she is, not how she dresses. Touched, Tiffany agrees to meet Sean later at the Java Web, and Sean leaves for work. Pensively, Tiffany reaches for a pair of scissors and begins to snip at her hair.
At the Web, Mark confronts Sean about Tiffany's homeless state. When Sean gives Mark Tiffany's version of her home life, Mark blasts Sean for being so ignorant where Tiffany is concerned and informs him that Tiffany does live in "that dump" and before that, Tiffany was homeless. Not wanting to believe Mark, Sean heads back to the abandoned day care center to confront Tiffany again. Later that day, Mark is stunned when Tiffany comes in sporting a new hairdo and looking very well groomed, but is deflated when she asks if Sean is there.
Meg, Ben, and Annie [and Dorothy and S.B.]
Meg decides the only way to get to Ben is by playing their email/chat game again. As she sends "S.B." [Ben's Internet name] a message revealing her identity as Dorothy [Meg's Internet name], with Mark looking on, neither notices that Ben is actually in the Java Web as well. At Ben's place, the whirring modem catches Annie's attention, and she opens up Ben's laptop.
As Meg reveals pours her heart out over her concern for Ben's emotional state over Annie's death, Annie quickly deduces that Meg and Ben have had a relationship over the Net - but that until recently, neither knew who the other really was. Realizing that Meg has discovered who her Internet love is but that Ben is still clueless, Annie plays dirty to block Meg from getting a firmer hold on Ben. Annie sends Meg an instant message that implies that Annie is the true love of Ben's life - even more so than his late wife, Maria. Hurt by the dismissive transmissions, Meg is totally devastated when a "Connection Terminated" message flashes onto the screen.
Having left Meg to give her privacy, Mark is stunned when Ben comes out of the back room and told him that he's "leaving to run errands." As Ben walks out the front door, Mark runs to Meg's side - she's been talking to an imposter! Meg makes a beeline for Ben's home.
At Ben's place, Annie puts on the infra-red stereo headset and turns up the rock music, dancing around the living room. Unaware that the doorbell is ringing, Annie dances into the other room as Meg lets herself in, calling Ben's name. Meg went upstairs as Annie dances back in and flops onto the couch. Still calling out for Ben, Meg returned down and circles the couch - and screams in shock.
As Annie rips off the headphones, Meg pulls her into an ecstatic hug - she's alive! But then, reality hits - it must have been Annie that Meg was talking to over the Net. Livid, Meg confronts Annie, who deftly turns the situation in her favor. She explains that she lied for Meg's own good, saying that Ben has a heart of stone, which happened after his wife Maria died. When Meg incorrectly assumes that Ben had been in on Annie's escape from the crematorium and expresses disbelief that Ben could have kept Annie's survival from her, Annie informs Meg smugly that the only person Ben trusts is Annie.
Although Annie nearly blows her story, she recovers quickly enough to
manipulate Meg into believing that Meg needs to leave town before she gets
even more involved with a "dangerous man like Ben." Annie urges Meg toward
the door and to leave now before she gets her heart even more broken, and
opens the front door - to Ben.
Frisday, February 21, 1997
Olivia, Gregory and Caitlin
Caitlin unwittingly reveals Gregory's new plan to separate herself from Cole when she informs her mother that the sister of the Contessa whom they met at lunch committed suicide over some "gigolo". Olivia correctly deduces that Caitlin's beau, Cole St. John [now being played by Eddie Cibrian] is the gigolo in question. When Olivia confronts Gregory, he arrogantly announces that his only intention is to protect his daughter.
Waiting for Caitlin on the beach, Cole recalls his promise to a woman who appears to be on her deathbed - he vows to reunite the family. Also mindful of Gregory's warning, Cole fashions a story to break Caitlin's heart. Back at the Richard's home, Olivia warns Tim to be careful... the Richards have a habit of eating their young.
On the beach, Caitlin is devastated when Cole informs her that he's in love with a sophisticated woman in London. His fling with Caitlin was just a Californian diversion. Hiding his real feelings, Cole leaves a distraught Caitlin on the beach. Later, Gregory welcomes a sobbing Caitlin with open arms and words of sympathy as Olivia watches. When Caitlin runs out of the house again, Gregory calls Tim and orders him to make sure that Caitlin comes home safely. Olivia expresses her disgust and pops the cork on a bottle of wine. At the beach cave, Tim finds Caitlin and persuades her to let him take her home.
Later, at the same cave, a drunk Olivia turns up and wishes for "some of that
Deschanel magic" as Cole enters the cave behind her.
Ricardo, Paula and Eddie
Ricardo persuades Paula to elope with him that night. In the meantime, Eddie scouts the perfect location for the next part of his plan to protect his interests. Paranoid about Paula's seeming interest in his new found wealth, Eddie fashions a hang-man's noose.
Later, at The Deep, Ricardo runs into the same woman who he helped out at the Java Web. While Paula heads for the shower, Eddie lets himself in, then freezes as the phone rings; he ducks back outside. While Ricardo's drinking companion likens his upcoming wedding to going off to war and makes it clear that she's ready to wish the soldier a passionate goodbye, Eddie kidnaps Paula and suspends her unconscious form from the ceiling with the hangman's noose around her wrists.
Meg, Ben and Annie
When Meg rips into Ben about his "deception", a confused Ben refuses to let Meg leave, instead pulling her back into the living room. When Meg's accusations finally make sense to Ben, he realizes Annie has been lying about the nature of their relationship. When Annie confidently prompts Ben to define their relationship to Meg, she's deflated to hear him call her a "friend".
When Ben went upstairs to make a phone call, Annie tries once again to manipulate Meg into keeping quiet about being Ben's "cyber-lover", Dorothy. When Meg agrees, Annie's thrilled - until Meg announces that she'll try to connect with Ben "in the flesh." Meg went on further to suggest that Ben refuses to be more than friends with Annie, because he doesn't trust her. Annie is further stricken when Ben walks into the room and agrees with Meg's analysis.
Ben suggests that he and Meg return to work and informs Annie that the more they keep things as normal as possible, the better it will work for them as they try to prove Annie's innocence. A triumphant Meg flashes Annie a grin as she and Ben leave, prompting Annie to note that if she really were a killer, Meg would be her target. Suddenly, Annie has a disturbing flashback of a woman's hands, covered with blood... panicked, Annie envisions more... the woman in her vision was wearing a black cape-like coat... and the woman wiped off the blood off her hands onto the front of the coat...