Traci changes her mind and allows Colleen to stay with her grandfather in Genoa City. Traci lets her daughter know that she has been accepted on probation at Walnut Grove. Before leaving she warns Colleen that this is her last chance before being sent away to boarding school. Nick tells Victor that Sharon blames him for the death of their daughter. Sharon tells Nikki about the paternity and how she holds Nicholas responsible. Malcolm confronts Neil at Crimson and asks him if Alex really has feelings for Neil. Alex, while denying she only has feelings of friendship for Neil to Michael, she is also worried what Neil might say to Malcolm. Malcolm arrives and tells Alex that Neil said he exaggerated about her feelings for him. He promises never to doubt her again. At Gina's, Neil pours alcohol into his coffee.
Sharon is determined to blame Nick for the baby's death and Nikki tries to get her to see that it was an accident. Nick left and has been staying at the office. Nikki reminds her that it was an accident, which happens especially when pregnant moms aren't watching where they're walking. She regrets saying it but tells Sharon that her pain doesn't justify her blaming Nick. Sharon can't let it go. Nikki urges her to move on with Nick. Sharon isn't sure it's possible.
Nick tells Vic that Sharon had the paternity test done and that he was the baby's father. They argued and he left. He recounts how their argument led to the baby's death. Victor declares that Sharon's feelings don't make sense. Nick claims he's tried to get past everything but Sharon refuses. Vic tells him to remember how much they love each other. Later, Sharon stops by. She mentions Nikki's visit and the good points she made. She's willing to try to get past things. She isn't too hopeful that there's anything he can say to change her mind.
Mac looks at the music box her mom gave her for her birthday (the one from their old house). She gets a call from Billy who updates her on Colleen's staying in Genoa City. Kay returns and asks if Billy is still coming for dinner. Kay is surprised that Colleen is staying in GC and will attending Walnut Grove. Kay notices the music box. Mac tells her about it. Kay tells her that she can invite Amanda over anytime she's ready. Mac worries what effect Amanda's staying will have on Brock when he returns. They decide to fill in Brock. There's no answer at his place in Louisiana and decide to wait until things settle down. Amanda arrives and thanks Mac for inviting her over. Kay reinforces the strict no lentils menu to Esther and then greets Amanda. Mac asks Amanda to stay for dinner who graciously accepts.
Raul and Brittany catch up on their New Years plans. He's been up all night working on his essay for colleges. Britt's not impressed with his essay at all. She offers to help him with his like he did with her. Diego notices them chatting and tells Raul he's heading back out of town. He's going back to his old job in Texas. Diego asks about Raul's essay. He senses that something's bothering his little brother and insists on talking about it. Raul says it's complicated but eventually goes into details about his problems with Rianna but is interrupted by their mom who wants to see Diego before he leaves. She wants to know where he's going or what he's doing. She's worried about her boy but he assures her he'll be fine and will contact her as soon as he's settled. She asks him to stay. But he bristles on the thought of being forced into the idea of a life his mother has for him. He wants to be independent. She sadly agrees and asks him to write. She tearfully says she loves him. Raul wants to know why Diego didn't tell their mom where he was going. Diego says that's between them. Raul takes off, angry at his brother. Britt tries to stop him but can't.
Lauren is relieved to see Paul okay. He tells her he didn't kill Michael, just warned him to treat Isabella right. He wonders how she knew about it all. Isabella told her. She went to see Isabella and warn her about Michael she claims. Lauren isn't worried about it since Isabella doesn't have stars in her eyes where Michael's concerned. They decide to have dinner together and find Mary's sauerkraut and spareribs. Her teasing reminds him of Christine and the way they joked about Mary's cooking. They get very cozy and eventually kiss.
Chantal informs Michael that Alex is out with Malcolm. She asks him about Paul's visit. She's been perusing a baby catalogue for her niece and Michael asks her advice as to what to get a baby. He then heads out of the office.
Michael stops by and fills her in on his meeting with Paul. He's not there to bother her but to bring baby gifts. She's taken aback by his gesture. She thanks him for it and invites him for dinner.
Nikki arrives at Victor's office and talks about Nick and Sharon. Nikki feels both Sharon and Nicholas should open the doors of communication "for their marriage to work out." Nick tells Sharon, "You accused me of killing our baby. If that is not the way you feel, then please say it right now." Nick replies, "Until you can erase the fact that you blame me for killing our baby, then we have nothing to discuss" Nick tells Sharon that if Sharon can't get past the blame she feels, then there is little hope that the marriage can stay together. Nikki tells Victor "We're going to have to help these kids out of this mess or their marriage is going to be in danger." Nick tells Sharon, "I don't want that." Nick doesn't want his kids to go through what he went through as a child with his parents divorce. Nick says he's tired of being Sharon's "whipping boy."
Lauren has a feeling she might regret it if she sleeps with Paul. Lauren remembers what Isabella said to her about wanting her out of Paul's life for her own "self-serving reasons." Lauren tells Paul that they have to talk about Isabella. Lauren says, "I think you both have some issues to discuss and I don't think we should see each other anymore until you have spoken with Isabella."
Raul enters the school computer room to work on his assignment and walks in on Rianna kissing J.T. Diego is worried about Raul and doesn't want Raul to screw up his life. Diego asks Brittany to watch over Raul to make sure he is writing his essay. Raul calls Brittany on his cell phone and asks Brittany to come help him with his essay. Diego doesn't want to leave town, knowing Raul is going to throw away his future. Brittany clued in Raul need a "distraction" because of J.T. and Rianna getting all lovey-dovey around him.
Amanda asks Billy how Colleen is doing. Billy thanks Amanda for her talking Colleen into coming back home. Billy says Colleen is back in Genoa City. Amanda bails on having desert with Mackenzie at the Chancellor Estate. Mackenzie tells Billy, "If my mom would have never left my dad, my life could have been so different." Brock comes home from his missionary trip and he is reunited once again with Amanda.
Sharon arrived home to find Victoria playing cards with the kids. She sent the kids up to get ready for bed and Victoria confronted her about what was going on between her and Nicholas. Sharon told her where they stood and that there was nothing more to talk about right now. Victoria tried to convince her that life was too fragile and that they couldn't give up on what they had. The kids came back into the room and Sharon sent Victoria home.
Brock was in shock at the sight of Amanda. He was upset that no one had told him about her sooner. Amanda apologized for everything and admitted that she had been a bad mother. He asked Mac and Katherine how they felt about her being there, then he sent Amanda packing.
Right away, Brock insisted that Mac tell him about why she ran away from Amanda's home. He was devastated to hear what had happened to his daughter. Billy told him that he thought that it was a good idea for Mac to give a relationship with her mom a chance and Katherine was a bit more cautious, not wanting Mac to be hurt. Brock told them that he had planned to stay just one night, but Amanda's presence had changed everything. Mac didn't want to stop his important work and was a little worried about how it was affecting her father inside. He told her that Amanda was ancient history for him. Later, after Mac went to bed, Katherine asked her son if he really didn't have feelings for Amanda any longer. . .
Ashley returned home from work to find Brad cooking supper with the baby in bed. They talked about an intimate evening, but soon the topic of Colleen arose. He was very angry with her and her family when he found out that Traci changed her mind at the last minute and allowed Colleen to stay without consulting him. Ashley insisted that she thought that he already knew. They forced themselves to change the subject and move back to their evening. He agreed and hugged her, but his mind was not free. . .
At the coffeehouse, Raul and Diego argued about the essay. Diego didn't want his brother to throw away his chance at success, but the bottom line for Raul was that he was tired of carrying their family's dreams on his back. He refused to take any advice from his brother who never stayed in one place very long. Raul ran off and Brittany had a conversation with Diego. She listened to his reasons why he should stay, but he had to go -- then gave him food for thought about the merits of staying. He took off abruptly at that point. . .
Larry was working at the shelter when Amanda returned. He was glad to hear that she had a nice visit with her daughter, but could tell that something was not right. She shared her fears with him and told him the story of how they met. She had hurt Brock very deeply and was afraid that she wouldn't have a chance with Mackenzie if she couldn't win him over.
Nicholas asked his father if he could move in with him in light of the impasse where he and Sharon seemed to be. Both Victor and Nikki were dismayed and upset about the news. Nikki tried to tell him that Sharon wasn't thinking clearly, but Victor agreed that he wouldn't put up with such accusations if he were in the same situation. Nicholas left for the penthouse and Nikki asked Victor to hold her in support during this terrible time for their family. . .
Cassie couldn't sleep, so she was downstairs when the phone rang. It was Nicholas wanting to say goodnight to the kids. He told her that he was in Milwaukee working on something with the coffeehouse. She handed the phone to Sharon and ran off the bed. Sharon put on an act for her daughter -- all she heard was a dial tone buzzing when she put the phone to her ear. . .
Brad and Ashley start their day. Ash tells him about a dream she had about Abby who was all grown up. She feels a sadness for the short time they'll have shaping Abby's future. Brad thinks the upheaval with Colleen is what's bringing this out. Brad knows they've had a rough time with Colleen and they'll have some rough times with Abby but he's sure they can make it just fine. John and Colleen stop by. The meeting with the headmaster at Walnut Grove went well but he has to speak with the board. Colleen asks if there's anything she can do to help. Abby has a babysitter but she volunteers to strip the old wallpaper down from the nursery. Later Brad and John have a moment alone. They disagree with how they are dealing with Colleen but it's Traci's call.
Brock opens the door to find Amanda there. She comes in and they chat about how they left things the night before. Both were surprised to see each other. She needs to know if he's judging her for what she's done. He was shocked when he found out about Mac. She understands how he must have resented her. He says time has softened him to what she went through. But what happened since then, what drove Mac to run away is what concerns him now. He asks about her husband but she hasn't spoken to Ralph since she left St. Louis. She knows she's made mistakes and should have seen the problem signs. What kept her going all those years was the letter he sent her, telling her he'd always be there for her. She realizes what a mistake she made not believing Mac and has since thrown herself at her daughter's mercy and knows that she needs to do the same for Brock. Mac arrives and asks how things are going. Being in the same room as both her parents feels weird -- but in a good way. Amanda leaves them to speak. Mac is leaning towards letting Amanda back in her life. Brock is concerned. He wants what's best for Mac and doesn't want her to be overwhelmed. He himself is feeling overwhelmed. Amanda returns and asks if Brock's made a decision about her.
Nikki interrupts a kiss between Phyllis and Jack. She apologizes for missing the wedding. Phyllis thanks her for the wedding gift. Phyllis excuses herself but not before Jack tells her he'll see her at the doctor's. Nikki asks how things with the in-vitro are going. Everything seems to be going well. Nikki then apologizes for not finishing her report and explains that Nick and Sharon have separated. He's sympathetic. He then apologizes for blowing up about the paternity issue of Christian. He still disagrees with her decision not to tell the father. He can't imagine not knowing about a child while the child is not being taken care of the way he should be which is a strong possibility with Diane. Nikki confesses that she went to see Diane in Italy. Christian is happy and healthy. He and his mother have a great relationship. Jack is surprised but not completely impressed since Christian is still just a baby. Jack is still frustrated that she won't tell him who the dad is. Later Nikki is surprised when Diane Jenkins shows up. Ever since Nikki showed up in Milan Diane can't stop thinking about what's going on in Nikki's head. She wants to know and she wants to know now.
Victoria picks up the proofs she needed for Brash & Sassy. Malcolm tells her how impressed he is for how she's put her life back together. She's says she's to fully up to speed yet and asks about Alex. Malcolm hedges and says they haven't set a date. Victoria's tells him almost frantically not to wait. Start their lives together ASAP. She asks him about Neil and how he's taking Ryan's death. She confesses that Neil screwed up a big deal and has seemed to make up for it but obviously something big is going on in his life for that to happen. She wonders if Mal knows what's going on. He claims to not know anything. She senses that there's a problem between the brothers but he refuses to explain more.
Neil is running haggard and very late. He's got a massive headache. He's got a big deal to close today. Alex stops by. She's there to thank him. He could have made things worse but chose not to and she appreciates it. He's still bitter about her saying there was nothing for him on her part. He coldly dismisses her but not before wishes her and Mal well together. He then warns her not to let her eye wander again because the next guy won't be as willing to take the fall for her like he did. After she leaves, Neil makes himself another drink. Later, Neil is suffering during the meeting; it's not going well. They argue about the details and things de-escalate to the point where the deal is about to fall through. Victoria overhears this last part.
Michael and Phyllis catch up as she gushes over her honeymoon. He's happy Jack is treating Phyllis right. He asks about the in-vitro. She needs a few more treatments and hopefully they can try it. She asks about the two gifts but he claims to know what she's talking about. She confronts him that she called Fenmore's and found out he was behind it. His reaction confuses her. He tells her that the champagne flutes weren't from him, they were from Diane Jenkins. She is floored. Michael assures her that it was strictly a nostalgic gesture. Se has nothing to feel insecure about since Diane is long gone and isn't coming back. Later, Phyllis is feeling a little ill.