Written by A. Washington-Beeby
Story Consultants: ML Cooks, Nick Monarco & C. Nathaniel Richardson
Alex stands, tablet in hand, in the Kiriakis living room. He taps a few spots on his tablet screen before handing his tablet to a waiting Justin, who sits in the easy chair nearby, looking baffled.
ALEX: Mom's decided to follow in Harper's footsteps.
JUSTIN: I'm hoping you mean that exclusively in the political sense.
Justin studies the electronic edition of the Salem Spectator for a moment, before looking up at his son, stunned by the news.
ALEX: Well...considering her history...it could go either way.
JUSTIN: We need to tread really carefully here.
Justin hands back Alex's tablet, deeply contemplative, as Alex places the tablet back in his briefcase, nodding in agreement with his father.
ALEX: Exactly. If she supports EnerNext, and her past becomes tabloid fodder, we could go down in flames with her.
JUSTIN: Or, on the other hand, we distance ourselves from her, she reacts by campaigning against the oil sands, and she wins...
ALEX: And the project could be dead in the water as well.
Justin nods, trying in vain to think of a solution.
JUSTIN: (sigh) There's only one way to deal with it. And it's not one I'm a big fan of. We have to wait for her to make the first move.
Alex sighs, equally frustrated by the spot they now find themselves in.
EJ follows an enraged Sonny into the Brady Pub, where he puts a hand on Sonny's shoulder, forcing him to turn to face him.
SONNY: What do you want, EJ?
EJ leans in closer to Sonny, speaking softly so as not to catch the attention of the rest of the pub.
EJ: Listen, you and I need to have a serious chat about what's going on with Gabi.
SONNY: Oh, you mean, you want to convince me that putting a deadly weapon in an apartment with a toddler is a smart idea? I don't think so.
EJ: Sonny, stop. Okay? I know you're angry about this. Trust me, I wasn't too keen on coming by with that gun, myself. But you have to understand exactly what's happening and why I'm so worried about Gabi.
Sonny looks at EJ, unconvinced, but willing to listen. Barely.
SONNY: Alright, I'll bite. But this better be the best explanation you've ever given anyone, so help me.
EJ nods solemnly, acknowledging the gravity of the situation.
Nicole, Eric, Chloe and Daniel stand in the office of the Justice of the Peace, stunned by the sudden arrival of Marlena and Sami at the conclusion of Eric and Nicole's wedding.
ERIC: Mom! Sami, what are you guys doing here?
Sami storms into the room towards Eric. Nicole steps in to ward off Sami from Eric.
SAMI: Stopping you from making the biggest mistake of your life.
NICOLE: Well, you're too late.
Nicole stares down Sami for a moment, before looking Marlena's way, smiling defiantly at both of them.
NICOLE: Eric and I are already married.
Nicole takes Eric's hand, and attempts to walk him out of the office, but Sami stops him, as Marlena advances to try to intervene as well.
NICOLE: So if you'll excuse us--
MARLENA: Oh no you won't!
Marlena attempts to intimidate Nicole as well, staring at her intensely before turning to Daniel and Chloe.
MARLENA: Daniel. Chloe. Would you excuse us a moment?
Chloe and Daniel look at each other, gravely concerned for what's to come, before Daniel puts his hand on the small of Chloe's back, guiding her to the door.
Justice of the Peace Watkins surveys the situation and addresses Marlena as well.
JP WATKINS: I'll...uh...I'll see myself out as well.
MARLENA: Thank you.
Marlena turns back toward Eric and Nicole.
MARLENA: I think it's time, we all had a little talk.
Nicole looks exasperated, looking at Eric to see a similarly frustrated expression on his face.
Sonny and EJ sit down at a booth at the Brady Pub. Both with coffees in hand, they look at each other solemnly.
SONNY: Well? I'm waiting.
EJ sips his coffee, before looking at Sonny, keeping his voice low so as not to alarm anyone.
EJ: Look, Sonny...all I can say is that Gabi has been trying so hard to get Nick out of everyone's life before he goes too far, and at every turn he's evaded us so far.
SONNY: But then why does that mean you have to go to such extreme lengths to get rid of him?
EJ: Sonny, come on. This is Nick Fallon we're talking about. He's a convicted murderer, and kindapper. He tried to rape Gabi, and tried to manipulate her into leaving the state with him, just so he could keep her daughter away from you and Will. We know what he's capable of, and we know what he can do to all of us if we don't deal with him exactly the right way.
Sonny leans in, emphatically pointing at EJ as he responds sternly.
SONNY: That does NOT mean you bring a gun into our home. I know full well what Nick is capable of. Quite frankly, he terrifies me. But I know that that gun is only going to escalate things. And someone's gonna end up hurt...or dead.
EJ: I agree. But where you and I differ, Sonny...is that I see it as an inevitability, whether or not Gabi has a weapon at her disposal. The difference being that, unarmed, there's a far greater chance that the person who may be killed is Gabi, or Will...or yourself. And I can't allow that to happen.
Sonny looks at EJ, then looks down into his cup of coffee, deep in contemplation.
Nicole folds her arms, as the door to the Justice of the Peace's office shuts, leaving only Marlena, Sami, Eric and Nicole inside.
NICOLE: Well, if you're going to try to get me to leave, you can save your breath. I'm not going anywhere.
SAMI: But God knows I wish you would.
Nicole shoots a look at Sami, snapping back at her snarky remark.
NICOLE: Well, too bad, Sami. I'm his wife now.
SAMI: I swear to God, Nicole, if I had legal grounds to, I'd be firing you so fast right now.
NICOLE: But you can't. And I'd like to see you try to make that hold up in court--
Eric steps in, cutting Nicole and Sami's argument off.
ERIC: ...Okay, enough. Both of you. Listen, I don't know how the two of you found out about this wedding, but we weren't doing this to pull one over on you.
MARLENA: Well, you could have fooled me. Eric, I know you're hurting over what happened with Kristen, and I know you feel some kind of gratitude toward Nicole for trying to track down Dr. Chyka, but to sneak around behind everyone's back and MARRY her?
ERIC: Mom, I am in love with her. Whether you and Sami believe it or not. And we were going to tell you--
SAMI: Oh, when?
ERIC: As soon as we figured out the best way. We were going to...take our time, let things settle down with dad, and...hopefully give you some time to start seeing Nicole in a different light.
Sami rolls her eyes, laughing at the thought of forgiving Nicole. Eric ignores his sister's petulence and continues.
ERIC: And when the time was right, we were going to let you know, and plan a big wedding for the family. But we wanted the time to allow you to accept our relationship first.
MARLENA: So to do that, you had to marry first? You couldn't wait for us to accept her and THEN marry?
ERIC: Mom, I just...I didn't want to wait.
SAMI: No, Nicole didn't want to wait. Because, like usual, Nicole rushes into things when she's up to something.
Sami steps in closer to Nicole, making her squirm.
SAMI: I know you've been cozying up to Nick and Percy the Greetings guy for the EnerNext story, but we all know Nick never does anything out of the goodness of his heart...so, tell us, Nicole...what's he got on you that's got you so nervous? Hm?
Nicole glares at Sami, visibly uncomfortable.
Jerome shuts the door to the motel room, a laptop bag in his hand, which he sets down on the desk for Sheryl.
JEROME: Okay. I pulled some strings and got you a basic laptop so you can get what you need done while you're out here.
Sheryl steps over to the desk, arms folded. She looks down as Jerome opens the screen, and plugs the USB stick into the laptop.
SHERYL: Great. So this has everything I need?
JEROME: I recorded the interview with my grandmother, took a copy of her resumé, and did a search on her professional profile. I think that we've got enough here that you'd be able to fool the people at University Hospital pretty easily into thinking you're Crystal.
SHERYL: Well...it's not like they know her.
JEROME: Exactly. Valerie's the only one who's spoken to her, and you'll just have to work on Jordan until you're able to get her alone and get her out of there, and then you can get out of town.
Sheryl smirks, putting a hand on Jerome's shoulder.
SHERYL: You do think of everything, don't you?
JEROME: I try.
SHERYL: Just one thing you didn't think of.
Jerome turns back toward Sheryl, confused.
JEROME: What's that?
SHERYL: What we're gonna do about Billie Reed. She's the only one who knows it's me, and not Nick that put that virus on the server. If we don't take her out somehow, the entire plan falls apart.
Jerome looks back at the laptop screen, sighing under his breath, as he thinks about what to do about Billie.
Justin packs up to head off for the office, as Alex finishes his cup of coffee, still deep in thought about how to deal with his mother's campaign for governor, and the server breach at Titan, when Henderson walks into the room, with Tyler in tow.
HENDERSON: Good morning, gentlemen. A Mr. Houston to see you.
JUSTIN: Thanks, Henderson, have him come in.
Henderson stands back to allow Tyler to come in, before exiting the room.
TYLER: Justin! Alex! I'm glad I caught you before you headed in for the day. I think we need to have a bit of a talk.
ALEX: Us? I thought we were having an emergency board meeting today?
TYLER: We are. And it's an all-departments one so you'll be expected to join us, Alex. But the three of us are going to have to come up with an action plan beforehand.
Justin turns to look at Tyler, confused.
JUSTIN: Action plan? For what?
TYLER: For how exactly we're going to make sure Nick Fallon doesn't singlehandedly torpedo this entire company.
Alex and Justin look at each other, more baffled than ever. Tyler looks at both of them with deadly seriousness.