Written by A. Washington-Beeby
Story Consultants: C. Nathaniel Richardson & Nick Monarco
Abby and Laura emerge from the kitchen of the Horton house, laughing as they talk to each other about their day. As they enter the living room, a moment of awkward silence hits them.
ABBY: You know, I know I don't say this very often, Grandma, but...it's good to have you back in Salem.
Laura takes Abby into a warm embrace, feeling grateful for her granddaughter's love.
LAURA: Oh, Sweetheart. It's so lovely to be back. And to see you so grown, and...happy again. I know, it's been hard with Chad gone.
Abby looks down, wistfully. She shrugs, trying not to think too much on it.
ABBY: Yeah, I mean...it hasn't been easy but...you know...Chad and I...things didn't work out.
Abby sits down on the sofa, and Laura quickly follows suit. The pair lean against the back cushion, looking at each other as they converse.
LAURA: Well, maybe not for now, but...I mean...Chad's recovering from being shot, it's not like he's never coming back to Salem. Honey, anything can happen.
Abby looks back, somewhat uncomfortably, as she thinks over what her grandmother has suggested.
At the Kiriakis Mansion, the family gathers around the long dining table to share a dinner. The tension thick in the air. Anjelica tries in vain to break the stone silence.
ANJELICA: So...I have to thank everyone for allowing me to come tonight.
Justin raises his head from his plate, swallowing hard as he interjects.
JUSTIN: It's not like we had much of a choice, Anjelica.
ANJELICA: Well, now, that's not very hospitable of you, Justin. I simply wanted to spend some time with my son. After all, we have been living apart for awhile now, since he's living with his lovely wife.
Noelle smiles awkwardly through chewing her food. She looks to Alex, who is also trying to eat (and hopefully stay out of the conversation).
ANJELICA: Alex, how do you like living here with your father's family?
Alex nearly chokes on his lamb souvlaki, attempting to answer Anjelica quickly. He finally swallows, and coughs before answering.
ALEX: Ah...great. It's been very...eventful.
ANJELICA: I'm pleased to hear. I know we haven't had much chance to talk since I've launched the campaign and all, but...I'm so proud of you.
Maggie interjects, hoping to quell the tension in the room by addressing the elephant in the room.
MAGGIE: Ah...Anjelica? You're staying at the Salem Inn, I heard.
ANJELICA: Yes, I have! I've taken a suite there for the time being.
MAGGIE: Mm! Ahh...how long do you plan on staying?
Adrienne looks knowingly at Justin, she mutters under her breath.
ADRIENNE: Here it comes.
Anjelica smiles at Maggie as she responds to her question.
ANJELICA: Well, funny you should ask. As it turns out, I'm going to be doing a lot more campaigning in the Salem area than I previously thought. Since I'm all about cutting back on fiscal waste and finding inefficiencies in government, it somewhat behooves me to practice what I preach. So...I was hoping to ask a small favour of you all...
Justin shouts out across the dining table, firmly and clearly.
JUSTIN: NO, ANJELICA! You may NOT stay here!
All eyes immediately begin to dart back and forth between Justin and Anjelica, as Anjelica gives a curious, and almost-amused look Justin's way.
Eric sits on his stool at the Brady Pub's bar, a look of total incredulity on his face, as he faces his mother, who stands before him.
Marlena looks down, almost ashamed of what she's said.
ERIC: I'm sorry, did I hear you right?
Marlena nods, reluctantly.
MARLENA: Yes. I asked you to help me run a DNA test on your father.
Eric looks baffled by Marlena's suggestion.
ERIC: For what reason, Mom?
MARLENA: Look, just...hear me out. Valerie and I were discussing your father's treatment, and...well...we can't locate any medical records on him from before the time Kristen brought him back to Salem.
ERIC: Mom, that was over 20 years ago!
MARLENA: Yes. I know.
ERIC: So you only noticed this now?
Marlena looks to the ground, half-shrugging as she's confused by the development herself.
MARLENA: Well...we never had to dig into his file that way, and...quite honestly, I was just thankful to have him home again, after we thought he'd died.
ERIC: Okay...so where does the DNA test come in?
MARLENA: (sigh) When your father came home, his face was bandaged up, and at first, I didn't recognize him. And when Valerie told me the files were missing, I...my mind went back to that day. I knew something was wrong, and...I followed my wish to see your father again instead of following my gut.
Eric's tone softens as he guides Marlena to the stool beside his.
ERIC: What did your gut tell you, though?
MARLENA: That Kristen and Stefano were up to something. As usual. Eric, neither of them would think anything of taking some stranger off the street, and brainwashing them into thinking they were Roman. They've done it before.
Eric breathes in deeply, nodding quietly as Marlena tells her story, then sighs.
ERIC: I know you're right. But we've been so sure for so long about Dad...Mom, he's so ill. Do you really think now is the time to be...going down this path? We should focus on trying to make sure his time left with us are as comfortable as possible.
MARLENA: I agree, if we know that it's just dementia. Quite frankly, Eric, I couldn't live with myself if I knew there was more to it than that. That Stefano had implanted these memories in him, and caused this terrible illness in him, and I didn't find out the truth in time? When I could possibly find out it's something else, and potentially save his life?
ERIC: I understand.
Marlena leans over, putting her hand over Eric's on the bar. She looks her son dead in the eye.
MARLENA: Eric, you know I wouldn't ask unless it was extremely important. Will you do this for me?
Eric furrows his brow, in deep thought over whether he should help Marlena or not.
Nicole sits at her desk, focused on her computer, scouring the documents Nick sent her regarding the EnerNext deal. She hears a knock on her office door, which she responds to without looking up.
NICOLE: Come in!
Sami enters Nicole's office, a determined look on her face. Nicole turns quickly to see who it is, and immediately sighs, rolling her eyes as she realizes it's Sami.
NICOLE: (sigh) What do you want? I'm busy.
Sami closes the door behind her, and folds her arms as she stands across the room from Nicole.
SAMI: Where's Abby?
Nicole looks over at Sami, giving an icy glare, as she responds cooly.
NICOLE: She went home. I figured I could handle this by myself.
Sami doesn't budge, as Nicole takes a moment to look over a paper on her desk. Moments later, Nicole looks back up at Sami, then the door.
NICOLE: That was a hint.
SAMI: Yeah, well, I'm not going anywhere. I have something important to talk with you about.
Nicole looks up, giving Sami a fake smile and a sarcastic reply, as she tries to focus on her work.
NICOLE: Oh. Great.
Sami begins to saunter over to Nicole's desk, beginning to talk to her as she heads from Nicole's desk. Nicole carries on working as she half-listens to Sami, never looking up at Sami.
SAMI: I just had a kind of a meeting with Kate...and...we learned something more about the situation with Titan that I think you'd wanna know about.
Sami leans against Nicole's desk. The intrusion into Nicole's personal space causes Nicole to look up at Sami, suddenly engaged in what she has to say.
SAMI: Nick now has controlling interest in Titan, and that makes him powerful, and dangerous. So I am going to follow EJ's promise, and give you total freedom for your special about the EnerNext project.
NICOLE: Even if Will gets caught in the crossfire?
SAMI: I'll make sure Will lands on his feet. You take that son-of-a-bitch Nick Fallon down before he destroys any more lives.
Nicole and Sami look intensely at each other, Sami's simmering rage in her eyes.
Abby smiles half-heartedly at Laura, as they sit across from each other on the couch in the Horton living room. Abby shrugs as she thinks over what her grandmother's said.
ABBY: I mean...I guess, but...Grandma, a lot's gone down since Chad left town. I mean (laughs) I just went on this...great date with this guy I met at Salem U.
Laura perks up, excited to hear about Abby's date.
LAURA: Ooo! Tell me more! Who's this handsome stranger?
Abby laughs, starting to blush at Laura's teasing.
ABBY: (laughs) Grandma, stop! His name's Jerome Grant, and he's a grad student. I really enjoyed myself.
LAURA: Oh! Grant! Is his mother Valerie Grant?
ABBY: Grandmother. And yeah, he lives with her, she just moved back to town.
LAURA: YES! I remember her! She worked with me when she was nursing student years and years ago. She's a fantastic woman. I remember your cousin David was madly in love with her. They were so beautiful together.
Laura looks at Abby, who looks on, fascinated by Laura's story. She stops, and pinches her granddaughter's cheek.
LAURA: And I know that you and Jerome will be just as beautiful. Especially if he's anything like his grandmother.
Abby and Laura share a laugh, and Abby smiles warmly at her grandmother.
ABBY: From what I hear, Jerome thinks the world of his grandma. Honestly, Grandma, I think losing Chad was the best thing that ever happened to me.
Eric sits next to Marlena on the barstools at the Brady Pub. Eric takes a moment to mull over what his mother's just suggested to him before responding.
ERIC: I dunno, Mom. I don't know if I can go along with a DNA test on Dad.
MARLENA: And I understand. But you need to understand why I have to ask.
ERIC: I think I do. You got burned once before with John. Stefano took years away from you with Dad, and...he made you second guess yourself. Now there's a chance that this man we've spent so many years thinking is Roman may not be...but...Mom, I don't see what value there is in that.
Marlena looks at Eric, pensively.
MARLENA: There is, though. We need to know his medical history if we want to be able to treat him properly.
ERIC: Yeah, But....Mom. Think about it. Sami's going through therapy to overcome her repressed trauma over her relationship with EJ. I'm just trying to get my life back together after Kristen turned it upside down. Carrie's in Europe, trying to juggle her career, raising Noah, and feeling helpless because she can't help Dad...Caroline's struggling to make it through every day now. She may not have much time left. And then there's Kim...
Kim's voice calls out from behind them, causing both Marlena and Eric to turn around suddenly.
KIM: What about me?
Kim stands before Marlena and Eric, an awkward smile on her face as she anticipates being filled in on their conversation.
Anjelica feigns being stunned, as the rest of the family look on silently, some awkwardly trying to continue their meal, as Anjelica responds to Justin's outburst.
ANJELICA: Well, Justin! I'm suprised at you! I didn't realize you were still holding onto such hostility toward me after all these years--
Justin stands up abruptly from his seat at the table, his voice raising over Anjelica's as he vents.
JUSTIN: Oh, come off it, Anjelica! We all knew this was coming. We knew why you wanted so desperately to come have dinner with us. You can drop the charade now.
ANJELICA: Well, I don't know what you're talking about, Justin, because I have been nothing but forthright with my intentions tonight.
JUSTIN: Oh, have you?
ANJELICA: Yes, I have. I came here to see my son, and his lovely wife, and his family. I came here to do business with them, and help further my campaign. I hardly see the issue in that.
Noelle sits back, attentively listening to the back-and-forth between the ex-lovers.
JUSTIN: Of course you don't! You never do! Sometimes I think you're completely oblivious to any and all social cues!
ANJELICA: Oh, believe me, Justin, I am aware of them.
Anjelica slowly rises from her seat, leaning on the edge of the dinner table as she zeroes in on Justin.
ANJELICA: I know the resentment you hold toward me. I even understand it. I did some things that were incredibly cruel to both you and Adrienne. And for that, I am tremendously sorry. But I refuse to stand back and allow hostility and pettiness continue to keep a wedge between my son's family and myself. All I ask is to stay here. To spend time with my son, his wife, and his family. All I want is an opportunity to allow us all to heal from the damage that I fully admit...that I caused.
The family look on, stone silent, as Anjelica stares down a defiant Justin. She then turns her gaze over to Alex.
ANJELICA: Are you willing to give me the opportunity, or not?
Alex looks back at his mom, awkwardly. He looks over and notices all eyes are now on him. He struggles to find an answer to his mother's question.