Drucilla told Malcolm that she wanted him to leave town. She said that he'd changed since he had returned, and that worried her. Malcolm didn't understand what she meant but was willing to oblige her wishes. When Lily, Devon, and Neil returned, Malcolm was gone.
Phyllis didn't believe she would stay out of prison unless she did something radical. Damon tried to talk her out of it, but Phyllis was determined. She went to a tattoo shop and had the artist at the shop turn her into a man.
Paul saw Nick at the coffeehouse, and they talked about Nick's feelings concerning Sharon and Nick working for rival companies. Nick hoped that soon Sharon would work for Newman, but the way things had gone, Sharon had taken up working for Jabot before Victor had appointed Nick as CEO. Nick was proud of Sharon and said that she had been doing a good job. Paul was reminded of his relationship with Christine and wished someday they could have a relationship like that again.
Bobby talked to Victor and hoped that he was not intruding. Victor said that it would be okay for them to stay for that night, since they had no place to go.
Malcolm went to see Olivia, and she pleaded for him not to leave.
Ashley received a phone call saying that Jabot's distribution center was on fire. She was stressed and asked Jack if he could help. He said he couldn't get involved because of Victor's rules. Besides, he had been offered a position at Chancellor Industries as CEO. Jack wondered why Ashley wasn't happy for him. She said that she had enough to worry about.
Brad and Sharon went over a speech, and Brad was impressed. He also had Abby at work because Francis had the day off. When Abby was bored and called Ashley, Brad suggested they go see Ashley. Abby was thrilled.
Phyllis, newly disguised as a man, drove down the highway. She pulled out a flask and took a few swigs, obviously wanting her breath to smell like alcohol. She began swerving the car and was promptly stopped by a policeman. She admitted to him that she'd been drinking; after shining his flashlight in her eyes, he arrested her for DUI and took her to the station. A smirk crossed Phyllis' face, as if all were going according to plan.
Back at the office of Baldwin, Blair & Williams, Christine told Paul of her total exasperation over Phyllis' actions and her refusal to follow Christine's advice. Paul jokingly said Phyllis needed a muzzle, and Christine agreed -- either that or an elephant tranquilizer. Paul and Christine were a bit testy with one another, but they continued discussing the upcoming case of Phyllis and Damon. Christine found it difficult to continue representing them because of Phyllis' antics, but Paul reminded Christine that he had always known her to stand by her clients and reiterated that she was too nice a person to desert Phyllis.
Christine agreed that she wouldn't abandon Damon and Phyllis and would continue to represent them. Christine gve Paul the highlights of the case, including the fact that there was no prison tape of Phyllis' visit with Dominic, and said that as of that moment, she didn't know how she was going to prove their innocence. Paul offered his investigative help in the case, and she accepted. Paul's sheepish grin proved he was happy to be working with Christine once again.
Neil found Malcolm at Crimson Lights and promptly sat down at the table with him. He told Malcolm that Dru had said Malcolm was leaving town. Neil asked for a reason and wondered where Malcolm would go next. With the tension between the two brothers obvious, Malcolm said he didn't know. Neil was confused, particularly because Malcolm had already gotten a job at Crimson Lights so he could see more of Lily. Malcolm said he had seen the people he had returned to see, but it was time to leave.
Neil suspected all was not right and demanded to know what was really going on. He questioned whether Dru had had something to do with Malcolm's decision. Neil stressed to Malcolm his wish for his brother to stay around so they could work on their relationship. Malcolm said it was best if he did not stay and was determined to leave. Neil became disgusted and walked out. Malcolm was also visibly upset.
Damon and Daniel sat at another table. Daniel had recently picked up Damon after his discharge from the hospital. Damon had realized that Phyllis could be a real handful and asked Daniel what was with his mother. Daniel said he had no clue but saw that she didn't think before she acted.
Malcolm spotted Daniel and Damon and approached their table. He asked Daniel how Phyllis was doing and asked details about the case. Damon and Malcolm shared a few ugly words back and forth. It was obvious the two had taken an instant dislike to each other. Damon and Daniel left, and Malcolm told Daniel he wanted to talk with Phyllis.
Back at Jabot, Sharon rehearsed her speech for the next day. Nick, Cassie, and Noah arrived, wanting to take her home. Sharon told them she would like to leave, but she had to work on her speech. Nick told Noah and Cassie to go down and look out the window at the Christmas lights. He informed Sharon she wouldn't be working there much longer. Sharon looked confused as to why she wouldn't be working at Jabot.
Nick said since he had been named the CEO of Newman Enterprises, he could hire Sharon there, as they had once planned. She reminded Nick she already had a job and really liked working at Jabot. Nick said she could have the same thing at Newman. Sharon reluctantly said she'd think about it, but the look on her face was less than enthusiastic. Cassie and Noah returned. They left for home with their dad. They all seemed disappointed that Sharon wasn't joining them.
After putting in some more time on her presentation, Sharon gave it to Brad for his approval. He complimented her profusely on her work and told her she was a real asset to the company. With the much-needed boost to her ego, Sharon left the office for home.
Brad and Abby arrived at the Abbott household. Ashley and Abby were overjoyed to see one another. Ashley gave Abby a gift -- pajamas to wear when she spent the night at the house with her mother. Abby asked her dad if she could stay over that night, and Brad agreed.
Abby went upstairs to put on her new pajamas. Ashley and Brad looked at each other pensively. Abby returned, and Brad left. Ashley and Abby happily decided they would make some popcorn.
At the Newman ranch, Nikki joined Victor and thanked him for letting Bobby and Brittany stay. Victor seethed and questioned why she cared about Bobby and Brittany's problems. Nikki told him she'd had no idea when he would return and had thought they could be company for her. Nikki accused him of not even knowing how she felt when he left, and his final quest had been the last straw.
Victor stated he knew it hurt her when he left, so that was why he had chosen to return. He tried to make her understand the hurt he felt when Victoria had left and when Nicholas had gotten him convicted, stating those were among the worst moments of his life. On top of that, he explained to her, he had found out that Ashley had given birth to his child, and that child rejected him because of the riding accident. He stressed to Nikki that while gone, he had realized he could not find any answers as long as he was away from her. Nikki reminded him that all those same things had affected her as well.
Again, Victor stressed he had returned because he had realized he couldn't be without his wife. Nikki, with sadness in her eyes, told Victor she longed to feel that closeness they had once had but couldn't take that risk again. Victor, seemingly in shock at hearing her words, stared intently at her. Nikki told him that she was older and wiser and that her love for him was no longer all-consuming. It didn't define her, she stated, and she admitted that maybe she had changed.
Victor asked if Nikki was saying she had no room for him in her life. Nikki quietly stated she had no answer to that but was grieving for what might have been adding that theirs had been a great love story. Finally, Victor asked Nikki if she wanted him to walk away. Nikki responded, "Do what you must; that's what I'll do." Victor sadly stated that he had never thought of leaving her.
Following Nikki and Victor's intense conversation, Noah walked in and gave his grandfather a big hug. A dejected Victor held him close.
Back at the jail, Phyllis was led to a cell with some scruffy-looking punks, her eyes darting around looking for Dominic. She made a couple of remarks to her cellmates. They realized she was drunk and wanted to roll her to see if she had anything valuable. She pretended she was going to be sick, so they backed off.
The guard shoved in another prisoner. Phyllis realized it was Dominic. They stared at each other for a moment. Phyllis, with her "man voice," made small talk with him and actually got him talking about Georgia and about the two people who were going to pay. He said that he had the cops eating out of his hand.
A guard stopped by and commented how drunk that guy -- Phyllis -- had been when "he" got there and how odd it was that he was talking non-stop. Damon seemed to take note of it. He began to stare at Phyllis rather suspiciously.
At the jail, Dominic started asking the disguised Phyllis a lot of questions about her "criminal" background. When she suggested that he finish his story, Dominic started laughing and said he'd tell her the story in front of someone else. He then demanded that the guard get Detective Weber there. He told Phyllis that her disguise was even better than the one she'd used at the hospital, but it wasn't good enough. A scuffle broke out between the two of them, and Dominic removed her wig. When Weber entered, he frisked Phyllis and found her tape recorder then told her that he was going to formally charge her with conspiring with Damon to kill Dominic.
At the coffeehouse Daniel freaked out about his missing mother to Kevin. He was afraid she was getting herself in deeper. However, he also wanted to know about Kevin's conversation with Mac. Kevin was coy with him, refusing to tell him what was on Mac's mind.
J.T. entered and, calling them "Fish" and "Sea Bass," asked if they'd seen Mac. Neither would tell him anything about her whereabouts, and he left. Daniel then told Kevin that he was going to help him get J.T. out of the picture so Kevin would have a clear shot at Mac, but Kevin wanted no part of any more of Daniel's schemes.
Mackenzie told Katherine she wanted to move back in with her, especially since she knew Arthur was gone. Katherine assured her that she'd be fine, and Mackenzie explained that she had other reasons. When Katherine heard Mac's complaints about J.T., she said that Brittany and Bobby had moved in with Nikki. Mac said that didn't remove the disrespect that J.T. had shown her.
Katherine suggested that her granddaughter might still have feelings for J.T. Mackenzie denied it, but later, when she was alone and remembering a time that J.T. had cared about her, she admitted to herself that she did still care. It was just that J.T. no longer did. When J.T. arrived at the Chancellor house full of optimism that Mac would return since Brittany wasn't moving in, Mac turned him down. J.T. left looking a little confused about Mac's behavior.
Sharon got home late and found the kids in bed and Nick up doing some work. He began to pressure her again about working for Newman, but Sharon said she wasn't ready to jump ship. Nick warned her that Jabot was going down in flames, but Sharon said she'd stick it out as long as she could. She liked her job and felt good that she was working for her paycheck. Besides she felt that Nick, as the new CEO, should avoid the appearance of favoritism by hiring her. Nick said that he'd thought they were a team. Hurt, Sharon said they were a team, no matter where she worked, and she went upstairs alone to go to bed.
Gloria went to Michael's office to scold him for going to the Abbott house and making suggestions that John needed to watch his bank account. In spite of Michael's accusations, she said that she was really fond of John. In fact, Michael and Kevin might want to consider that she'd given them an "in" to the Abbott family. Michael said he couldn't see himself at any of the grotesque Abbott breakfasts. He was sure that sooner or later, it would blow up in all their faces.
Gloria said if John found out the truth, he'd forgive her. She added that she'd love to see the look on Ashley's face if Ashley ever saw Michael and Kevin at the table. Exasperated, Michael suggested that they could set up Kevin with John's granddaughter, Colleen -- the one he'd tried to incinerate. Annoyed by his negative comments, Gloria left.
Ashley told her father about the latest Jabot catastrophe, and John said that he'd never hated Victor more than at that moment. At a time when they could really use Jack's expertise, Victor had made it impossible for Jack to help them. He hoped that his son would accept the offer from Katherine, however, because Jack was too talented to be idle. As Ashley blamed herself for what was going wrong, Abby walked downstairs and asked her mother to read her a story.
Left alone, John brooded about how to save his company. When Gloria entered with her hands full of shopping bags, John told her that Jabot was teetering on bankruptcy. Once Gloria was reassured that the family finances were stable, she cheered up and gave John words of encouragement and support. John's mood improved, and he vowed to save his company.
Ashley visited Nick in an attempt to contact Victor. Victor showed up, and Ashley asked that they talk alone. Victor wondered how Abby was doing, and Ashley said Abby was fine, considering that her parents were separated. Ashley said she was not there to talk about Abby; it was about Jabot. Jabot was in trouble, and Ashley wanted permission from Victor to get Jack to help them.
Neil suspected that Drucilla might have had something to do with Malcolm deciding to leave town. He told her that Nick had decided to cancel the beauty pageant.
Sharon said that her presentation had gone well, considering not everyone had shown up. Brad said that Sharon had done a great job. Drucilla went to Jabot to talk to Brad about her old position and learned that Sharon was their new spokesperson. Drucilla told Sharon that Sharon wouldn't last long because she had no experience.
Neil couldn't work together with Nick's attitude and decided to quit working at Newman.
Michael visited Phyllis in jail, and she begged him to be her attorney. He was furious with her but decided to take on her case because they were friends.
Daniel went to see Christine and told her that Phyllis had gotten arrested. Christine made a call and found out that Phyllis had dressed up like a man and gotten a DUI so she could try to get recorded information from Dominic, but her plan had failed.
Damon visited Christine, and Weber told them that Damon could turn himself in or they would go and arrest him. Christine decided to be Damon's attorney. Michael and Christine discussed working together on the case.
Ashley begged Victor to reconsider his stipulation that Jack never work for Jabot again. The company needed him more than ever, and they'd only made the agreement because Victor had had them over a barrel after he had nearly destroyed the company with his bribery and interference. Victor said that being without Jack was the best thing that could happen to Jabot. He adamantly refused to back down.
When Ashley asked Victor, businessperson to businessperson, what his advice was, Victor said there was a way to save Jabot. All she had to do was give him custody of Abby. Horrified, Ashley told him that would never happen. She left looking completely disillusioned with him.
Damon and Phyllis got into an argument in the middle of the police station, with Christine and Michael trying to quiet their clients. After the two were separated, Christine and Michael commiserated over the increasing complexity of the case thanks to Phyllis' actions. Michael pointed out that Damon had been the one wielding a sword. Weber told Christine that he was going to ask that Damon not be given bail because he was an escape risk.
Later, when Christine returned to her office and told Paul how badly things were going, he set up a call between her and the warden of Dominic's Georgia prison. Christine said that if he didn't send her a transcript of Phyllis' meeting with Dominic, she'd go to the press with the news that private family conversations were being secretly recorded. Later, when a fax arrived from Georgia, Christine began reading it with a shocked reaction.
Daniel ran into Malcolm at Crimson Lights and told him that Phyllis had been arrested for her stunt. Malcolm couldn't help but laugh, saying it sounded just like Phyllis. Malcolm blamed Damon for getting Phyllis into this mess, but Daniel wasn't so sure. Later, when Phyllis arrived at the coffeehouse, Daniel was furious with her. He pointed out that she was all he had, and when she did those crazy things, she never thought of the consequences.
Daniel was beginning to think that Christine was right; Phyllis was her own worst enemy. Phyllis said that if Christine were doing her job, Phyllis wouldn't have to try to get evidence herself. However, she urged him not to worry about her, insisting that Michael Baldwin was the best attorney in the Midwest and would get her out of it. She then made him agree to go home with her so they could both get some rest.
Dru couldn't believe that Neil had quit his job and tried to convince him to talk with Nick again. Not only was he walking away from the second best position of a major corporation, but her own job would probably be in jeopardy without him there. Neil wouldn't back down. He said he couldn't work for Nick as long as Nick was making bad decisions and recanting on Victor's promise that Neil's projects wouldn't be dropped.
Neil felt good about leaving. He not only wanted to spend more time with his family, but he hoped he could use the opportunity to rebuild his relationship with Malcolm. After he left, Dru went to the ranch to see Victor, who was startled to hear that Neil had quit his job.
Lily was crushed to hear the news that Malcolm was leaving. She thought they had something special, and she couldn't understand how he could just walk away from his family. Malcolm assured her that he loved her; thoughts of her and Nate had helped him survive his ordeal in Africa. Although he couldn't explain his reasons for leaving, he promised to stay in touch with her. They left the office at the coffeehouse and saw Neil there.
While Lily went to splash water on her face, Neil asked Malcolm if she was in some kind of trouble. Malcolm explained that she was just reacting to the news of his leaving. Neil explained how much he wanted to reconnect with Malcolm and take this second chance to make things right. He'd even followed Malcolm's advice and walked away from Newman Enterprises.
Malcolm said that changed nothing. He had to go. When Neil reacted angrily, Malcolm said that Neil had no idea how much Malcolm was giving up for Neil.