At Newman Enterprises, Victoria and Nikki worried that they hadn't heard from Victor since he'd left for his meeting with J.T. Victoria regretted that she'd let her father go alone, and Nikki wailed that she didn't know what she would do if she lost Victor. Victor entered the office, and Nikki rushed into his arms. He insisted that he was fine, and Victoria inquired about J.T. Victor revealed that the man who'd been there hadn't been J.T.
Nikki guessed that Paul had shown up after Nick had called him. Victor snarled that Nick had wanted her to think that to throw off the scent, since Nick had arranged the meeting. Victor announced that Nick had caused everything bad that had happened to Newman by impersonating J.T. Victoria protested that it wasn't something Nick would do, but Victor stated that his son had acquired new skills. Nikki referred to the sightings of J.T. outside town, and Victor reported that Nick had proudly taken responsibility for all of it.
Victor added that Nick had actually gloated when describing how he'd ruined Victor's reputation and taken down the company Victor had spent a lifetime building. Victoria asserted that it was the business their kids were supposed to run one day, and Victor considered it unconscionable that Nick had made them all think that J.T. was out for blood. Nikki inquired whether Victor was still looking for J.T., and Victor vowed to find the "bastard" and make him pay, since it wasn't a game to Victor the way it was for Nick. Nikki stormed out to see what Nick had to say, and Victoria followed her.
At the cottage, Nick swore that he was still the same guy he'd always been who would do anything for his family. Sharon lectured that he was like Victor when he was trying to rationalize his bad behavior, but Nick contended that the difference was that he knew what family meant. Nick explained that he hadn't been trying to control the people he loved and that he'd just wanted what was best for them, but Sharon scoffed at the notion that it had been best to lie and pretend to be J.T. Nick understood that she felt deceived, but he couldn't fathom why she was taking the part about J.T. personally. He demanded to know what else was going on with her.
Sharon compared Nick's actions to Mariah posing as Cassie and making Sharon feel like she'd seen a ghost. Nick argued that the situations weren't even close, but Sharon countered that he'd seen the terror on her face and her growing anxiety. Nick pointed out that J.T. wasn't a ghost because he wasn't dead, but Sharon said Nick had stirred up fear that J.T. was back in town again. Sharon griped that people had screwed with her perception before, but she'd never thought Nick would be one of them. He was truly surprised by her reaction, and she snapped that the fact that it hadn't crossed his mind made things worse.
Victoria and Nikki arrived at the cottage and confronted Nick about the malicious things he'd done to hurt Victor. Nick maintained that he'd done what he'd had to do, and he'd do it all over again in a heartbeat. "Then you can go to hell," Victoria growled. Nikki and Victoria excoriated Nick for what he'd done, but he insisted that they had it wrong. Victoria questioned how he could say that after what he'd done to her, but Nick replied that it had been about their dad.
Victoria raged that she'd thought she could count on Nick to look out for her, but she hadn't been able to eat or sleep and had been so consumed with fighting for Newman that she'd sacrificed her entire summer with Johnny and Katie. She continued that she'd stayed awake at night, terrified that J.T. would break into the house and attack her again. Victoria blasted Nick for not sounding the least bit guilty, and he replied that he wasn't. She recalled that he'd listened to the hacker's message with her and had feigned being supportive, and he explained that he hadn't been able to say anything because he'd needed his plan to work. Nick swore that Victor had been his only target, and he pointed out that there had never been any actual threat to any of the women.
Sharon argued that they'd felt threatened and that stress wasn't good for Nikki's multiple sclerosis. Victoria scoffed at the idea that Nick considered the destruction of Newman to only be collateral damage when the company was their legacy. Nick reiterated that everything he'd done had been worth it, and he imagined what Victoria would have done if Victor had gone after her kids. Nick asserted that Victor had done whatever it took to get full custody of Christian, and the pain and loss had meant nothing to Victor. Nick declared that he'd sent the message loud and clear not to mess with him, his life, or his family, and he wouldn't apologize for putting an end to it.
Victoria understood Nick's rage and desire to fight for his little boy, but she thought he'd stepped too far out of bounds. Sharon felt the same way, and she believed the man she'd fallen in love with would never have conceived such a brutal plan. Nikki pointed out that Nick had known the toll his plan had taken on them and Victor, and his father was still suffering the aftereffects of a stroke. Nick thought Victor would be fine with the best doctors money could buy, but he clucked that his father's inability to admit that he was human hadn't worked in Victor's favor.
Nikki was appalled by how cold and calculating Nick had become, and she reminded him that Victor had recently been fighting for his life. Nick recounted that he'd been at the hospital every day, praying that Victor would get a second chance, but he chided Victor for throwing it away. Nick griped that Victor had gone back to being the "controlling, manipulative bastard" he'd always been, and Nick refused to feel any remorse. An upset Nikki rushed out, and Victoria started to head after her, but Nick appealed to Victoria and Sharon to hear him out.
Nick explained that his top priority had been getting his son back, but he'd had another motive for using J.T.'s identity. Nick continued that he'd been under his dad's thumb his whole life, even when he'd created his own business, and he conceded that giving away his trust hadn't been the answer. Nick had expected to get back into his father's life and rejoin the family business while maintaining his independence, but Victor hadn't been able to tolerate him playing by any rules but Victor's. Nick proclaimed that he'd devised a plan to help him and the entire family, and he anticipated that Victoria and Sharon would see in time that it all made sense. Sharon and Victoria protested that they needed more than that, and Nick promised that he would reveal everything the next day.
Nikki joined Victor at Crimson Lights and reported that Nick felt that his actions had been completely justified. She asked if Victor regretted suing for custody, but Victor countered that Nick had started it by trying to take his grandson away from him. Victor huffed that if Nick thought he'd won, he had "another thing coming."
At home, Hilary told someone over the phone that the timing was perfect, since Devon had gone out of town at the last minute. She hung up as Shauna walked in. Shauna opened a container of ice cream, and Hilary guessed from the flavor that it was boyfriend trouble. Shauna confided that she'd planned to go to Charlie's, but she was stuck there because Cane and Lily had decided to go out, and Charlie wasn't allowed to have Shauna over unless a parent was home. Hilary wasn't surprised, but Shauna whined that she'd had friends over all the time when she'd been alone at her parents' house.
Hilary pointed out that Charlie was more than just a friend, and she figured that the Ashbys were being responsible parents. Hilary received a text message from someone who was waiting for her, and she complained that Lily could be uptight about a lot of things. Shauna protested that she and Charlie were practically adults, but Hilary doubted that Lily was going to change. Hilary headed out for the evening, and Shauna smiled.
Later, Charlie arrived at the penthouse, and he regretted that his parents' change of plans had messed things up for him and Shauna. Shauna questioned why his parents got to have all the fun when she and Charlie worked hard, too, and he asked if Devon and Hilary were upstairs. Shauna mentioned that Devon was away and Hilary was out, and he wondered if Shauna was comfortable with that. She chirped that the rules were different there, since Hilary didn't mind if they were alone. Shauna was happy to have the place to themselves, and Charlie gushed that he didn't care what they did as long as he was with her. They kissed.
Charlie recognized that he and Shauna hadn't been together very long, but he thought he was starting to fall in love with her. She grinned and returned the sentiment, and they resumed kissing. He pulled back and admitted that he didn't want to stop, but he also didn't want to cross any lines. She agreed that she didn't want to stop, either, but she wanted their first time to be special, not rushed. Charlie added that he wasn't prepared, so he had to make a run to the drugstore. Shauna noted that Devon and Hilary would be gone the following day, and Charlie said it would be perfect.
At Crimson Lights, Mariah told Tessa that the night had turned out more interesting than she'd originally planned, and she wondered why she felt so nervous, since they'd hung out a hundred times before. Tessa pointed out that it was their first real date, and she offered to do all the typical first-date things. They listed things like not ordering anything too messy and fighting over who would pay the check, but Mariah thought they were way beyond all that. Tessa added that it was like "friendship plus," since they were taking something good and making it even better.
Mariah recognized that it was a big change for both her and Tessa, but she wanted to stay in the moment. Mariah suggested that they figure it out as they went, and Tessa proposed that they celebrate by doing something more festive. They joined hands on their way out, and Mariah remarked that it felt like there was a neon sign over their heads, telling the world that they were more than friends. Mariah couldn't believe it was actually happening, and they left, holding hands.
At the Athletic Club, Hilary thanked a man for working around her schedule by agreeing to see her late, and she appreciated his discretion. They heard loud laughter and spotted Mariah and Tessa walk in. At the bar, Mariah sensed Hilary's eyes wearing a hole in the back of her head. Tessa opted to ignore Hilary, but Mariah could hear Hilary's snarky comments going through her head. Tessa confirmed that Hilary was staring at them, and Mariah contemplated whether they should go somewhere else or say hi.
Tessa figured that it would only be a big deal if they made it one, and she and Mariah headed over to Hilary's table to say hello. Mariah voiced surprise that Hilary wasn't resting at home, and Hilary hesitantly introduced her "old friend" Mark to the ladies. After an awkward silence, Mariah blurted out that she and Tessa were on a date, and Hilary remarked that it was about time. Hilary urged the women to have fun, and she recommended the rooftop. Tessa prompted a speechless Mariah to say goodnight and led her away. Hilary tried to hide her discomfort.
Hilary told Mark that he'd painted an enticing picture, but he guessed that it hadn't been enticing enough. She thought that things would have been different six months earlier; however, she and Devon had been working really hard to build something solid, and she didn't want to do anything to jeopardize it with a baby on the way. She groaned that she'd almost died a thousand deaths when Tessa and Mariah had shown up, since the last thing she needed was them telling Devon that they'd seen Hilary and Mark together. Hilary hoped that the women had been too caught up in one another to be focused on Mark, and she stressed that no one could ever find out the real reason for their meeting.
On the roof, Mariah was stunned that Hilary had actually been nice, and Tessa conceded that people could sometimes surprise them, like Kyle had when he'd arranged for the movie and given them the push they'd needed. Mariah took Tessa's hand and mused that they were back under the stars where the evening had begun, and it had been a terrific first date. Tessa caressed Mariah's hair and noted that there was one thing that would make it even more incredible, and they shared a tender kiss.
Phyllis stepped off the elevator of her apartment building and ignored an incoming call from Billy. She entered her home and greeted Summer, who asked where her mother had been. Phyllis nonchalantly stated that she'd gone to the office and the coffeehouse before she'd found Billy in the middle of a high-stakes poker game at the Athletic Club. Summer incredulously asked how Phyllis had tracked him down, and Phyllis warned her never to underestimate her mother. Phyllis added that Summer already had, since Phyllis knew exactly what Billy had been up to.
Phyllis questioned why Summer had thrown a poker game there, and Summer defended that she'd thought it would be harmless. Phyllis spat that Billy was a gambling addict, and she demanded to know "why in the hell" Summer had done something that could push him over the edge. Summer claimed that she'd just been trying to have fun with her friends, and hurting Billy had been the last thing on her mind. Phyllis refused to give her a pass for not considering the repercussions of her actions. Summer acknowledged that her mother was right, but it had seemed like Billy had had everything under control.
Summer lamented that she never would have told Billy about the games at the club if she'd known he'd spiral out of control so quickly. She rambled that she also never would have asked him to bail her out when she'd gotten in over her head, even though he'd been able to win back enough to cover her losses. Phyllis divulged that it was the first she'd heard of any of it, and Summer paled when she realized that Billy hadn't already told Phyllis everything. Phyllis wondered why Summer had reached out to Billy and not her, and Summer explained that Billy had been in the same position before and that she'd begged him not to worry Phyllis.
Phyllis was livid that Summer and Billy had covered for one another, and it dawned on her that Summer's show of wanting quality time with her mother had only been to distract Phyllis while Billy had been gambling. Billy walked in the door, and Phyllis barked that he would have stayed away if he knew what was good for him. Billy recognized that Phyllis was upset, but he reasoned that everything was okay because he'd wired his winnings to the girl he'd lost Jaboat to, so it was like he'd never lost. Phyllis snapped that it was more about his deceit than his gambling, since he'd chosen not to tell her about covering for Summer financially.
Billy contended that he'd wanted the women to have a better relationship, but Phyllis ranted that it wasn't his job to repair her relationship with Summer, nor was it Summer's job to protect Billy from her. Phyllis thought they should have turned to her when they'd gotten in trouble, but they'd instead stacked lie upon lie. Phyllis stressed that she needed to trust her boyfriend and her daughter, but they'd formed a secret alliance and pushed her out of the equation. She speculated that perhaps they didn't care how she felt.
Summer thought Phyllis had to understand what it was like to be full of regret for doing something stupid. Billy added that he hadn't been able to make things right without disappointing the person he cared about most, but Phyllis retorted that he'd cared more about covering his "ass" than being honest with her. Summer defended Billy, but Phyllis snapped that Summer had more than enough to apologize for herself. Billy took responsibility for asking Summer to lie, but Phyllis admonished him for not being mature enough to know how to act in a grown-up relationship by giving her trust and honesty. She stormed upstairs, and he asked if it was adult to walk away in the middle of a conversation. She slammed the bedroom door.
Billy chugged from a bottle of wine, and Summer assured him that Phyllis would understand when she cooled down. A suitcase landed at Billy's feet, and from the stairs, Phyllis spat that she couldn't live with a man she didn't trust. She ordered him to go, but Summer asserted that it was her apartment. Billy declared that he was more than happy to go if Phyllis was going to overreact, since he'd tried to get through to her, but it clearly wasn't happening. He walked out.
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