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EPISODE 90 Written by A. Washington-Beeby Story Consultants: ML Cooks, Nick Monarco & C. Nathaniel Richardson Inside Anita's cabin, the dark night is lit up by the roar of the fire. A late winter snow and wind whips past outside, but inside, the home is warm and comforting. Anita sits inside, curled up on her sofa, engrossed in a book. She stares down at the page through her reading glasses, perched on the tip of her nose, as the sound of footsteps emerge from the guest bedroom. It's Brady. Anita turns, surprised to see him finally up and out of his room. ANITA: Good Lord! You're out of your room! Brady looks at Anita, inquisitively. BRADY: Yeah! I mean...well...the fire and all... Anita pulls her reading glasses off, a smile on her face as she looks at Brady, amazed to see him out. ANITA: I just...well...I knew you'd been moving around your room but...you've barely been out since you've been here. BRADY: I...I know. I just...I'm glad you gave me the space to...you know...recover and...clear my mind. Anita moves over slightly on her sofa, then pats the space next to her, encouraging Brady to sit down, he walks slowly over and sits down, though awkwardly, his legs weak from weeks of under-use. ANITA: Sit, sit! Look...Brady, I...you know I don't mean to pry but...darling, what happened to you before I found you on the shore? Whatever it is...it's deeply troubling you, and...maybe I can help you with it? Brady looks down, sighing, as his mind wanders back to the night of his accident. The memories flood back to him. *** FLASHBACK TO EPISODE 39 Theresa pulls her little vial of cocaine out for Brady. He brazenly pours it out on the table in front of him and grabs his wallet to grab a credit card to cut it up with. Theresa is barely paying attention, as she uses her cell phone camera to try to get a good look at her makeup. THERESA: I still look so good right now. Better than that bitch Chloe. God, her singing got on my nerves you know that? BRADY: Stop talking about Chloe like that! She's...great. THERESA: Sure, Brady. Whatever. I think I'm gonna take a selfie of this. Theresa fumbles with her phone, trying to flip the phone around to use the flash, but ends up reversing which lens is in use, and begins recording a video of Brady as he does the line of cocaine from the table. Theresa, not sure why the camera isn't working, flips the phone back around in frustration. THERESA: Ugh, this damned phone. Never...oh... BRADY: What? THERESA: Nothing. Stupid camera was on the wrong function, just... BRADY: It didn't get a shot of me, did it? THERESA: I can't even tell. Nothing's working right. *** FLASHBACK TO EPISODE 41 As the car takes off, Brady is back at the club, looking for Theresa. Unable to see her, he sees Chloe and stops her to ask. BRADY: Hey, uh...have you seen Theresa at all? CHLOE: No, the last time I saw her she was heading out the door in a hurry. BRADY: What? *** FLASHBACK TO EPISODE 43 Brady opens the doors to the board room, overhearing Victor's announcement. VICTOR: Then it is so...as of today, the 27th of July, 2014, Brady Black is temporarily relieved of his duties as CEO of Titan Industrie-- BRADY: NO! The board turn around in shock at Brady's outburst... *** FLASHBACK TO EPISODE 45 Brady's foot presses more and more on the accelerator, as the car pushes up towards 70, 75, 80mph. Theresa holds onto the grip on the door tightly. THERESA: B...Brady, slow down. Brady is looking straight ahead, barely even acknowledging Theresa's existence. BRADY: Why? THERESA: Well...well the speed limit, Brady is-- BRADY: Do you honestly think I care right now? Like...at all? Do you think what you want matters to me right now? THERESA: Brady, you're scaring me. Brady starts to pay closer attention to Theresa now, but it is mostly anger he shows her as he intermittently divides his attention between her and the road before him. BRADY: Do you think I'm scared? Huh? Do you think I can feel anything right now? THERESA: Brady, what are you talking about? BRADY: What do I have now, Theresa? Think about it for a second, yeah? I just lost my job, my reputation is ruined, the woman I thought I was getting to know and care about, she double-crosses me because she's so damned insecure about me being able to be nice to my ex-wife. Every single woman I ever get involved in betrays me. My family hates me. Tell me, Theresa.What do I have to live for now? Tell me. THERESA: Okay, okay, Okay-- BRADY:...TELL ME! Do you get it? THERESA: Okay! I'm sorry, Brady, would you PLEASE slow down. Brady takes his eyes off the road now entirely, and begins to lean in closer and closer to Theresa. His speed is now reaching 85mph. BRADY: Ohhhh no. You don't get it, do you? I want you to listen to me for once. No distractions. No one around to watch you to see the glamourous life you're living off my back. Just you, finally facing the person you are. The despicable, self-absorbed piece of street trash you really are-- Theresa looks away from Brady. 90mph. Theresa looks up and sees a sharp turn in the road ahead, she panicks and screams out. THERESA: BRADY, LOOK OUT! Brady looks up and tries to steer into the turn while slamming on the brakes. Theresa, in a moment of quick thinking, pulls her door open and leaps from the vehicle, but due to the speed the car is travelling at, she is knocked unconscious and severely injured immediately upon impacting the ground. Brady's car skids off the road and drives through the barrier, off the side of the embankment, into the lake below. *** Brady snaps out of his haze, as he begins to breathe heavily, almost having a panic attack right in front of a very concerned Anita, who has wrapped her arm around Brady's shoulders. ANITA: Brady! Brady! Are you alright? Talk to me! Brady shakes his head, coming out of his state, he looks at Anita, swallowing heavily before answering her, still gasping for air. BRADY: I...I can't, Anita. I just...I gotta... Brady gets up from the sofa, and grabs a coat from the coat rack. He quickly darts toward the door and steps out, shutting it hastily behind him. Left behind in the house is Anita, looking at the door in shock. She settles back down on the couch, mouth left hanging open in shock. --- Sheryl lies asleep in her bed, lying next to a wide-awake Lucas. Lucas stirs silently, unable to close his eyes. He sighs as he turns to look at a dormant Sheryl, he breathes heavily, looking uncomfortably at Sheryl in bed. He swallows, as if gasping for air, as he turns away to get up out of the bed, trying not to wake Sheryl. He sits quietly at the edge of the bed, as though trying to catch his breath. He looks up, standing up as quietly as possible, grabbing his boxers from the floor and hastily putting them on before turning to walk over to the window. Deep in thought, he looks out and sighs as he stares off into the night. --- Nicole and Eric flop down, spent from the passionate sex they've just had. Breathing heavily, they look lovingly at each other in bed. Nicole turns back towards her new fiance and puts her hand on his chest, playing with his chest hair as she talks softly to him. NICOLE: You know...if it's like this every time, I can't wait to be Mrs. Eric Brady. Eric smiles, laughing a bit to himself as Nicole looks on, mock-offended. NICOLE: What?! ERIC: I just had a thought... Nicole looks at Eric, inquistively. NICOLE: And that is...? Eric turns his head to face Nicole. He raises his eyebrow and replies casually to her. ERIC: Are you gonna take me to Red Lobster now? Nicole punches Eric's arm playfully as he laughs, clutching his arm in pain momentarily through his laughter. NICOLE: You're so WEIRD. ERIC: (laughs) No, but seriously...I was thinking...why wait? Why don't we get married tomorrow? Nicole looks at Eric, shocked by his suggestion. --- Inside the living room of the Kiriakis mansion, Victor stands, sipping his drink slowly. While his family appears to unravel before his eyes in the garden, and his great-nephew is married to a woman he loathes, his stress is high. His glass of bourbon shakes in his hand as he simmers with rage. Looking down after taking a sip, he sees a picture of Brady on his desk. Feeling emotional, Victor grits his teeth hard. Suddenly, something appears to jolt Victor from within. He drops his glass of bourbon on the carpet, as he grabs his chest, the glass shattering on the ground. --- --- Jordan and Jerome stand in Jordan's hotel room, a palpible tension between the ex-lovers. Jerome stands behind Jordan, waiting for an answer. Jordan turns, looks at Jerome, annoyed by his probing questions, and answers angrily. JORDAN: My decisions and who I'm with now are no longer any of your concern, got it? Jerome stares at Jordan a moment, before bursting out laughing. He shakes his head at Jordan, crossing his arms. JEROME: That was a great performance, girl. I gotta hand it to you. But I'ma tell you something. Okay, you...you're in love with that dude. It's obvious. And you and I know damn well how dangerous that is when you're in town on a job. Especially when you in deep with a cop. Jordan turns away from Jerome again, now folding her arms, and rolling her eyes, not wanting to hear Jerome's advice. Jerome responds by stepping in closer to his ex. JEROME: For God's sake, Kay! Have you looked this Hernandez dude up? He used to be an FBI agent! You know how much danger you're in if he figures out your ties to this EnerNext takedown? You have no choice but to leave town...and him. Jordan turns back around, walking right past Jerome toward the door again, not even looking him in the eye. JORDAN: You're just trying to stir up trouble becuase you want me back. And as God is my witness, I am never EVER going back to you. You need to get that through your head, Jerome. Jordan swings the door open to her suite, pointing the way out to Jerome. JEROME: I'm not trying to stir anything up. I'm just looking out for you. Evidently something you aren't doing. JORDAN: I am looking out for me. And I found a better way out. So whatever you and Sheryl have cooked up for tomorrow, I want no part in. Jerome shakes his head as he steps toward the door. JEROME: I got news for you. You're already too far in. There's no way out now. Jordan snaps at Jerome, staring him down menacingly as her voice raises at him. JORDAN: GET. OUT! Jerome obliges, never taking his eyes off Jordan as he steps past the doorway. He turns before Jordan closes the door, and gives Jordan one last tidbit of advice. JEROME: Alright! I'm out. But remember. There is no way out of this. Even if you do manage to worm your way out of this situation, your little detective friend is gonna find out all about your...extra-curriculars. And it ain't gone end well. Jordan looks unmoved by Jerome's warning. JORDAN: Goodbye, Jerome. JEROME: See you tomorrow, Kay! Jordan rolls her eyes as she slams the door shut behind him. Jordan leans against the door after its shut, the front of strength she put up against Jerome withering away, as she looks around, panicked by his stern warning. --- Lucas looks intensely out the window of Sheryl's apartment. The night sky is dark, and the cloudcover means not a star in the sky. Looking out over the lights of the centre of Salem, he barely blinks as he thinks over what has just happened. Sheryl's words still linger in his head from earlier. "You know....I never could understand...how a man....could still call himself a man...and not want to make love." Lucas looks back at Sheryl, a bitterness in his eyes as she glares her way. Wordlessly, he walks back over, puts on pants, and hastily throws back on his white t-shirt and dress shirt, barely managing to grab his suit jacket before he heads for the door. On his way out, he takes one look back at Sheryl, before quietly closing the door behind him. On the floor near the door, his tie has fallen in his haste to leave. --- Nicole can barely choke out her reply to Eric about his offer to elope, as she lays in bed next to him, wide-eyed, and open-mouthed. NICOLE: I...what? Eric, I mean...that's not what I had in mind for this wedding...at ALL! Eric interrupts her just at the end, taking her hand in his as he speaks gently to her, trying to calm her nerves with reason. ERIC: I...I know. Look, I would love to do it the traditional way and have a huge wedding with all our families there but...I mean...think about it, Nicole. That's really unlikely with my family. Nicole shrugs, acknowledging the facts Eric's laying out. NICOLE: Fair enough, I mean, your sister alone would probably try to drag me back up the aisle. ERIC: ...Aaaaand not to mention my mother. I...I had a long talk with her and...I mean, we're just patching things up after what happened with Kristen and...(sigh) I just don't...I don't want another huge falling out. I'd rather just...quietly get married and...well, we can tell our families in our own time. Hopefully, without drama or any attempts to stop the wedding from happening. NICOLE: Do you honestly think we can make that happen, though? Eric thinks momentarily, sighing at the thought of having to hide his nuptuals. ERIC: We stand a better chance of just making it to the altar this way. NICOLE: But we'll still have to face your family when we get back. I mean, Eric, I don't want our marriage to be this deep, dark secret, like we're ashamed of it. ERIC: I know. But...I'll make you a deal. We get married officially tomorrow. Just a simple justice-of-the-peace ceremony, and once my family gets used to the idea of us being together and..their opinion of you mellows a bit, we do a big ceremony, the right way. Okay? Nicole smiles, nodding slowly in agreement to Eric's idea. NICOLE: I think I can handle that. ERIC: Good. I uh...I'll call Daniel in the morning, and we'll get this all organized? NICOLE: And I guess I'll call Chloe, and...we head up to Chicago? Eric smiles warmly at his soon-to-be-wife, raising a hand to gently stroke her cheek. ERIC: You ever feel like a teenager? NICOLE: Doing something BAD and rebellious? Eric and Nicole giggle as they lean in slowly to gently touch each other's lips in a kiss. --- Brady stands out by the lake, watching the waves crash against the shore. He stares straight ahead, barely even blinking as Anita walks over to him, wrapped warmly in her winter coat. She stands silently beside him for a moment, looking up at him with a piping hot cup of tea in her head. Looking up, she offers him the tea. ANITA: You took off in a real hurry. Brady breaks his gaze, looking down at Anita, as he accepts the cup of tea. BRADY: I had to get out of there. Brady takes a sip of the tea, before raising the cup in a toast. BRADY: Thanks for the tea, by the way. ANITA: Anytime. I thought you'd be cold out here. BRADY: Nah...it's not that bad. Besides, gives me some time to think. Some fresh air's good for the ol' brain. ANITA: I would have thought you'd have plenty of time to think cooped up in that room all the time. Brady laughs a bit at Anita's remark, still staring straight out at the water before him. BRADY: Funny enough, I spend most of my time in there trying not to think. About anything, really...sneaks up on you sometimes. ANITA: What do you mean? BRADY: (sigh) Just...thinking about your family. What you left behind. Anita stops a moment before responding. She hesitates even to say it, but eventually goes ahead anyway. ANITA: Brady, don't you think you should eventually go back to Salem? Brady looks back out at the water, shaking his head quickly. BRADY: Nah. No way. If I do go back, my life in Salem is over, anyway. There's nothing left for me there. Anita looks at Brady with a pained expression. Brady continues to look straight out for a moment, before turning to look at Anita. BRADY: You know...you ever get the feeling that something terrible is about to happen, you just...no rhyme or reason to feel that way, it's just...your gut? ANITA: Ohhh yeah. I've had that feeling a lot the last few weeks. BRADY: Yeah...I'm feeling that now. And it feels like it's partly my fault. Brady stares back out at the water. Anita joining him as the sound of the waves crashing against the shore mesmerize them. --- Maggie, Alex, and Noelle stand in the kitchen at the Kiriakis Mansion. Maggie, still prepping dinner for everyone, turns toward the couple, who are stood together, with Alex embracing Noelle from behind. She smiles at them, loving their closeness. MAGGIE: Well, you two. Dinner's almost ready. I'm just going into the living room to let Victor know and we'll be ready to start. Okay? NOELLE: Alright, Maggie. We'll be in the dining room in a minute. MAGGIE: Alright, but I don't want you two lovebirds to be late to the dinner table either, okay? Alex and Noelle laugh as Maggie heads for the swinging door to the kitchen. ALEX: Alright, promise. Alex and Noelle hold up one hand, gesturing the promise to Maggie, who shakes her head while laughing at the happy couple. After Maggie steps out of the room, Noelle quickly turns around to face her husband, kissing him quickly on the lips. NOELLE: You know, I could really get used to being a Kiriakis. ALEX: Now THAT is something I never thought I'd hear you say. NOELLE: (laughs) It's true, though. Honestly, I'm grateful that Maggie's been so welcoming to me. It's really made a difference. Alex takes both of Noelle's hands and looks her intensely in the eyes. ALEX: Look, Victor will come around. Just give him time, and whatever misgivings he has about you are gonna fade away. NOELLE: I'm...not so sure. ALEX: Well, I am. So don't worry, okay? Noelle smiles, leaning in to kiss Alex again. The couple wrap their arms around each other as their kiss evolves from a quick peck on the lips to a more passionate one. --- Outside, in the Kiriakis garden, Justin puts a hand on Sonny's shoulder to try to get his attention, but Sonny shrugs it off immediately, aggravated by Justin and Adrienne's intense conversation at his and Will's expense. SONNY: Don't...touch me right now, Dad. I'm serious. You two have seriously got to back off. All the way off. Adrienne pleads with her son, stepping towards him, and trying to take his hand, but Sonny will have none of it and lurches away. ADRIENNE: Please, Sonny, just...you have to understand, I'm just trying to look out for yo-- SONNY: ...No! No, you need to stop doing that. Okay, your idea of looking out for me, which, by the way, I don't need because I am an adult...is smothering me, and it's toxic. It is starting to tear away at my relationship with the man I want to spend the rest of my life with, and we haven't even made it to the altar yet! Adrienne stops, trying to choke out a response to Sonny while holding back tears. ADRIENNE: I just don't want you to make a big mistake. And I'm sorry, Will, but I think that Sonny marrying you would be a huge mistake. Will shakes his head, feigning cluelessness at Adrienne's reasons for not wanting he and Sonny to marry, knowing that her answer will sound absurd to Sonny. WILL: But why, Mrs. Kiriakis. I mean, you know Sonny and I have been through a lot. And I've stood by him. So why are you so concerned now? ADRIENNE: Because, Will, I know what your mother's like, and I've seen the way you look at-- Adrienne gets cut off by the sound of Maggie's shocked voice coming from inside the house. MAGGIE: (from inside) OH MY GOD, VICTOR! Everyone turns around suddenly, stunned by what they hear. Sonny is the first to react, running quickly inside, as the others filter in. Inside, Maggie kneels by Victor's limp body, sobbing as she panicks, trying to figure out whether Victor is alive or dead. Sonny arrives first, followed by Alex, Will, Adrienne, and Justin, as Noelle slowly saunters in behind them all, arms folded, with a much different look on her face from the others. Maggie looks up as Sonny rushes into action, pulling his phone out from his pocket. Maggie shouts out to the others. MAGGIE: I think he's had a heart attack, call the ambulance. Sonny dials 911 immediately, as the others are stunned, almost too stunned to react, as they observe Victor lying on the floor, struggling to breathe. Justin then jumps over, kneeling down with Maggie, as he grabs Victor's hand. SONNY: (into phone) Yes, this is Sonny Kiriakis, we think my uncle's just had a heart attack... ---
EPISODE 81 Written by A. Washington-Beeby Story Consultants: ML Cooks, Nick Monarco & C. Nathaniel Richardson Hope walks through the Salem Police station towards her office as Rafe approaches. Hope looks over and smiles in greeting as Rafe does the same. RAFE: Hey! Just who I was looking for. HOPE: Well, don’t I feel flattered. Come in. Hope opens the door to her office and props it open for Rafe come in behind her. He shuts the door after entering as Hope sits down behind her desk. HOPE: So I got a few things I’ll need to take care of today so I’m not here long. What’s up? Rafe walks over to Hope’s desk and drops a file on it before her. RAFE: Well, this can’t really wait. There was another burglary in the west end again last night. Hope looks up, stunned and disappointed. HOPE: You’re kidding. RAFE: Nope! This time, they at least got a description of the suspect. It’s not perfect, but… Hope picks up the file and looks it over quickly, studying it as best she can. HOPE: Young male, black, 20-25, muscular build. Grey college hoodie, not Salem U. Wow, okay. Anything turn up so far? RAFE: Nah. This guy seems to have vanished into thin air after the robbery. All they know is he was in a rented moving van, but no one can trace it, they didn’t get the licence plate or anything. Hope drops the file on her desk as she looks back over at Rafe. HOPE: Damn. (sigh) Alright, well, we’ll keep looking. You doing okay? Rafe shrugs, smiling half-heartedly. RAFE: Yeah, I’m fine. Can’t complain too much. Hope looks at Rafe’s face and raises her eyebrow skeptically. HOPE: Why don’t I believe you? Rafe looks up, confused. HOPE: It’s Jordan, isn’t it? Rafe, is something going wrong between you? Rafe sighs, hesitant to get into this discussion now. --- Daniel stands, stunned in Laura Horton’s office at University Hospital. Laura looks up at him, worried about Daniel’s sudden silence. She gets up from her chair and tries to get Daniel’s attention. LAURA: Daniel? Daniel! Daniel blinks, suddenly back to reality. DANIEL: Hi. Sorry. Umm…look. I think I just…put two and two together and…yeah, I’m worried about Abigail. Very worried. Laura looks at Daniel, now more worried than before about her granddaughter. --- Nick sits casually on Percy’s sofa in the cabin, as Percy works away, carefully studying the Titan security videos. Nick scrolls through his tablet, earpiece in one ear, smiling widely at what he’s seeing and hearing as he suddenly gets up and turns to Percy. NICK: Got it! Percy looks up, peeling the headphones off his ears as though they’d been on for hours. Percy winces in pain as his ears appear, red as tomatoes. PERCY: My apologies, Nicholas. I didn’t hear you. NICK: I think I know exactly what we’re going to need to stick it to Victor. Check this out. Nick offers his tablet to Percy, who studies the image of Jordan, Sheryl, and Jerome’s meeting. After squinting at it a moment, Percy dons his bifocals, staring once again at the screen looking down his nose. PERCY: But…Nicholas, who is that young man there? I’ve never seen him before. Nick pulls his tablet away, casually flipping the case around it to close it as he heads back to the sofa to put the tablet away. NICK: That…is apparently a man named Jerome Grant. From what I caught, which, incidentally isn’t much because those girls need to stop mumbling so damn much, he knows Jordan and Sheryl from before they came to Salem. PERCY: Could he be a danger to us? Nick pulls out his cell phone from his bag, smiling his classic smug smirk. NICK: Ohhh, I don’t think that’ll be a problem, Percy. Look, I’m gonna head into town, I’ll see you later, okay? Nick grabs his laptop bag and slings it over his shoulder as he heads for the door. Percy smiles, nods, and waves as he begins to put his headphones back on. PERCY: Absolutely, I’ll keep you informed if I hear or see any so-called “juicy tidbits”, Nicholas! NICK: Great stuff, Percy. See you later on. Nick closes the door to the cabin, as he makes his phone call. … Gabi, sitting at a table at Town Square, rocking Arianna back and forth in her stroller, hears the phone. She suddenly stops and looks frantically for her phone. Pulling it out, she looks down with a sickened look on her face as she sees Nick’s name on her screen. GABI: Oh God. Quickly answering, she swallows hard, expecting the worst. GABI: Hey Nick, w…what’s up? … NICK: Hey, Gabi! Uh…look I really have something important to talk to you about. Can you meet me in 20 minutes at the Brady Pub? … GABI: Uh…sure. Yeah, I can! … NICK: Great. See you then. Nick hangs up the phone, beaming. NICK: Ohhh Gabi. You’re gonna love the surprise I have for you. Nick walks off toward his car, feeling on top of the world. …. Gabi hangs up the phone, a look of dread on her face, as she tries to distract Ari, but silently curses Nick. Her sudden tension isn’t lost on Ari, who begins to cry, upsetting Gabi even more. --- Marlena and Eric walk into Club TBD, Eric finally having a laugh with Marlena after spending two days in solemn silence. They find a seat and are handed menus by the server. Marlena and Eric both look up pleasantly, Marlena holding up her hand to stop her before she puts the menus down. MARLENA: Oh, it’s okay. I’ll just have a coffee. ERIC: Same for me. Marlena turns back to Eric with a serious, but loving face that Eric recognizes immediately. He reacts to it with a change of expression, back inward. ERIC: Mom… MARLENA: (interrupting) I know you don’t want me to pry… ERIC: No. Actually, I do. Mom, you’re the only person I can turn to about this. I’m…honestly, I’m really struggling. Marlena looks on, now really concerned for Eric. She squints a bit, staring intently at him. Eric catches this and looks down as his coffee is put down on the table in front of him by the waitress, Marlena’s in front of her. MARLENA: Eric…what’s the problem? Eric breathes in deeply, then sighs as he prepares to tell his mother about his dilemma. ERIC: Mom, I’ve been…really troubled ever since this whole…situation with Kristen went down and…I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. MARLENA: Okay. I mean, it’s understandable that you’d have a lot of conflicting emotions, Eric. You lost your vocation. It meant a lot to you, you don’t just…lose that overnight. ERIC: Right, but…(sigh), some things have happened since then…I mean…Sonny and Will’s wedding, among other things…and it’s made me sort of…realize… Marlena leans in, trying to catch Eric’s eyes. Eric, stirring his coffee mindlessly, stops, finally looking at his mom. MARLENA: Sweetheart. Realize what? ERIC: I’m thinking of leaving the church altogether. Marlena’s eyes widen at Eric’s revelation. --- --- Valerie stands in her office at University Hospital, leaning against her desk with her other hand on her hip, as she stares down her grandson, Jerome. VALERIE: Come on now, out with it! Something is on your mind, and you’re a bad liar. JEROME: Grandma… VALERIE: Well, maybe you can fool other people but you sure as Hell can’t fool me. Now spit it out. Jerome rolls his eyes, pausing a moment before he gives in. He turns and faces his grandmother, earnestly responding to her. JEROME: I just…I ran into old university friends from Toronto here and…we didn’t leave things on a good note. That’s all. VALERIE: Well, you know, it’s not like you’re still kids, Jerome. I think taking the year off before you started your PhD was probably a good idea. Maybe things have mellowed and you’ll work things out. JEROME: Hopefully….I just can’t shake the feeling that something’s happening that I don’t quite understand. I got a bad feeling, Grandma. Valerie smiles as she walks over to Jerome, putting her hand under his chin in a form of encouragement. VALERIE: You will be alright. In all your years on this Earth, you’ve managed to be smarter, and more resourceful than anyone I’ve ever met. You just remember that. Jerome smiles slightly, a warmth in his eyes as he looks at Valerie. He suddenly looks down at his phone and sees the time. Fumbling around a moment, he sets his phone on Valerie’s desk as he asks her a question. JEROME: Thanks, Grandma. Look, I gotta get going, uh…you got the keys to the new house? Valerie digs into her pocket and pulls out a keyring with three keys on it, tossing them Jerome’s way casually. VALERIE: Yep! Got ‘em right here. Jerome catches them with ease as he starts for the door. JEROME: Thanks. I gotta get this stuff into my room before I head into Salem U. Get into the registrar’s office before it closes. Thanks, Gran! VALERIE: See you later, Sweetie. As Jerome closes the door, Valerie watches him, a warm smile on her face, before she grabs her file folder on Roman. She stops as she picks it up, putting it back down again as she sees Jerome’s cell phone. VALERIE: Oh Damn it, JEROME! She jumps up from her seat and runs for the doorway, but Jerome is already gone. She stops in her doorway, turns back around and sighs. As she heads back to her desk, she stops before it, and stares at Roman’s file. VALERIE: Well...maybe it’s time we found some answers for you, Roman. --- Rafe looks at Hope, sitting opposite her at her office desk. Rafe tries to hold back his emotions a bit. Hope leans in, trying to catch Rafe’s eye. HOPE: Rafe, come on. I think we’ve known each other long enough to know when something’s up with each other. Rafe looks up at Hope and sighs. He decides to speak his mind. He begins, fidgeting uncomfortably. RAFE: Well…yeah, you’re right. I dunno. Jordan’s been…really distant the last few weeks and I can’t put my finger on why. Hope looks at Rafe, concerned. HOPE: Has anything changed in the last few weeks? Like…I know she’s been busy with work and all but… RAFE: Nah. It’s mostly been Sheryl. I think she’s going through something and…apparently can’t go to Lucas about it so she goes to Jordan. HOPE: And you get left out in the cold. RAFE: (sigh) Right. Hope reaches out and puts her hand over Rafe’s, giving him a comforting look. HOPE: Just be patient. Whatever’s going on is not going to break the two of you. I see the both of you and you’re always…incredibly happy when you’re together. Whatever’s going on with Jordan or Sheryl…it’ll pass. Rafe smiles slightly, as Hope gets up from her desk and slips on her jacket, and grabs her keys. RAFE: Hope you’re right. HOPE: I know I’m right. Look, I’m going to pick up Ciara from school, I’ll keep my eyes open for anything about the burglaries. Okay? Rafe gets up from his seat to head into the hallway himself. He holds the door for Hope as she exits the room, with Rafe right behind her. RAFE: Sounds good. I’ll text you in a bit if I come up with anything. HOPE: Great. See ya! RAFE: Bye! Rafe shuts the door behind Hope. He sighs as he grabs his phone to check for any notification from Jordan. RAFE: Nothing. (sigh) --- Laura looks at Daniel, she takes a moment before asking her next question to Daniel, almost afraid of the answer she’ll get. LAURA: I’m afraid to ask. Daniel immediately starts to pace the room, trying to calm himself a bit in hopes of also placating a now-frantic Laura. DANIEL: Look, just…I was Abigail’s doctor when she had that…accident at work. And…I’m not saying to panic but…I will look into this for you, okay? But…don’t worry. I will make sure Abigail is okay. Laura exhales and smiles at Daniel, nodding in satisfaction. She relaxes a bit, feeling reassured. LAURA: Thank you. Laura stops a moment, seeing that Daniel still appears troubled by their conversation. She puts a hand on his arm in reassurance. LAURA: And, Daniel. Just…I’m sorry to insert you back in Jennifer’s business like this…I know you two have, well, gone your own way. But…I feel like you…you know my family better than anyone at this hospital and…well…Jenn and Abigail could really use your help. I just…I didn’t know who else to turn to. Daniel nods in understanding. As he responds, Billie approaches Laura’s office door. She hears Daniel’s voice and stops, creaking the door open as he speaks. DANIEL: No, it’s okay. I…totally understand why you came to me, and I mean…I’m always going to love your daughter, no matter what’s happened between us. I’ll do whatever it takes to keep Jenn and Abigail safe. BILLIE: What are we keeping Jenn and Abby safe from? Daniel and Laura both turn around, surprised by Billie’s entrance. Billie looks back, a curious look on her face. --- Marlena looks at Eric incredulously. She leans in closer to him, almost scolding him with her reaction. MARLENA: Are you serious? Eric, you were so passionate about being a priest, it…it was your life— ERIC: …WAS my life, Mom. MARLENA: Eric, don’t let Kristen win. She’s taken so much from us already, you can’t… Eric holds up his hand to try to stop his mom from continuing. ERIC: Mom…please. It’s not about Kristen. In fact, I’m starting to think that it’s because everything that happened was because of Kristen, that…maybe that’s why it’s taken me until now to make this decision. Marlena chokes a bit on her words, unsure how to respond, but still not pleased. MARLENA: I…I, I mean how…look, you just need the proof that Dr. Chyka’s drug is what poisoned you that night, and you’ll be exonerated. We know that. Eric looks down, already exhausted by Marlena’s unrelenting pressure. ERIC: Mom— MARLENA: Eric! You can’t give up when you’re so close to clearing your name. ERIC: Mom! I’m not about to give up. I will never stop until people know the truth about what happened to me that night. But, Mom, how am I supposed to support a system of beliefs that tells me that my nephew…not only doesn’t have the right happiness with the man he loves, but that they both should be killed for it. Just for loving each other? How do I support a church that is so ready to throw me under the bus, and to judge me as this…monster, when I was a victim? There is so much…evil that is swept under the rug in this church, and they want to dismiss a priest who comes out as gay? I mean…Mom, they won’t even acknowledge your marriage to John, even with all the extenuating circumstances that caused your affair and your divorce from Dad. Marlena looks down, nodding sadly as she thinks back on her affair with John. MARLENA: I know that was hard, but… ERIC: Mom, it’s…I chose to overlook it for a very, very long time. Because I saw the good that being faithful, and being a priest could do. The benefit it could have to humanity, and the…the joy and comfort that my faith could bring, and I wanted to share that with the world. And maybe I was doing it, in a way to…make my family proud, I don’t know. But the fact remains that I could not reconcile my faith and my love for my family. And my desire to see them happy with the people they love. Marlena reaches out across the table and grabs Eric’s hands in hers. Squeezing them tightly, she begins to cry, a look of pride across her face. MARLENA: Ohh, Eric. My darling boy. I don’t care what your vocation is. I will ALWAYS be proud of you. And so will your father, and your grandmother, and your aunts and uncles and everybody. Eric and Marlena share a laugh, as Marlena holds Eric’s hands firmly. MARLENA: I want you to remember, no matter what…I couldn’t be more proud of you than I am right now. Don’t you ever forget that. ERIC: Thanks, Mom. Marlena and Eric get up from their seats and share a tight, warm hug that seems to last ages. As Marlena lets go of Eric, she looks him dead in the eyes, still a bit teary. MARLENA: And whatever you do decide…I will support you. No matter what. Eric nods, feeling the first bit of comfort he’s felt in a long time. ERIC: You know, you don’t realize how comforting it is to hear that. Seriously, thank you. I love you. MARLENA: Oh, Eric. Marlena pulls Eric in again for a hug, once again holding him tightly, like she was comforting him as a boy. --- Nick looks up from his tablet, as he sits in the booth at the Brady Pub. He spots Gabi in the doorway and gets up from his seat. He goes to grab Arianna, but Gabi tenses up, reactively pulling her closer to her chest. She tries to pass it off as nothing and points to the high chair in the corner. GABI: No, no! I got her, can you just…grab the high chair for me. Nick turns around and spots the high chair, springing into action dutifully. NICK: Oh! Yeah, absolutely. Nick steps over to grab the high chair, and sets it up for Ari to sit in. Gabi smiles and slots Ari in carefully, with Nick’s help. GABI: There we go! Easy does it. Once Ari’s in place, the pair sit down. GABI: Ohh, thank you, Nick. Nick shifts midsentence towards Ari, paying the beautiful young child some attention, but Ari is not having it and flinches at Nick’s touch. NICK: Anything for you and this beautiful little girl of yours! Hey sweetie!! Ari kicks Nick’s hand away, causing Nick to jump back a bit, and having a short laugh about it. NICK: Wow, she’s feisty today! Gabi laughs nervously in response before becoming fairly serious, nervously asking Nick the question of the hour. GABI: Heh, yeah. She’s…like that some days. You never know. So…uh…why did you ask me to come, Nick? It sounded...pretty important on the phone. NICK: Oh, trust me, Gabi. This is…life-changing news. Without a doubt. Gabi looks to one side, grimacing, trying to fake a smile and failing. GABI: Can’t wait. Nick looks down at his trusty tablet, swiping through different screens until he pulls up the screen to show Gabi. NICK: Kate and I have been working on a new line for MadWorld. It’s a young, fresh line of skin care that is 40% less heavy than your main line products with just as long-lasting coverage. Can’t really get into details more than that, but…it’s tested REALLY well. GABI: That sounds fantastic. W…what does it have to do with me? Nick turns the tablet toward Gabi and hands it to her. On the screen is a beauty shot from Gabi’s old modelling shoots with a tester from the new line photoshopped in. Gabi looks on in shock as Nick reveals his intentions. NICK: We want you to be the face of the new line. Gabi looks up at Nick, breathing in deeply, an almost panic-stricken look on her face. ---
EPISODE 84 Written by A. Washington-Beeby Story Consultants: ML Cooks, Nick Monarco & C. Nathaniel Richardson Billie sits at Theresa’s bedside, holding her friend’s hand, watching her comatose body rest. Billie looks on, solemnly, and deep in thought. She smiles after a moment. BILLIE: Theresa. It’s me. Billie. Billie stops a moment as she watches her friend lie in silence. The only sound in the room is the machinery around her bed, the beep of her heart monitor. Billie fights the urge to tear up, and smiles instead. BILLIE: You know, I was thinking the other day...about one of our phone calls. You were fifteen and you were so mad at your Dad because he was…off on another ISA mission, and you had made plans with him for the weekend to have a ski trip in Colorado. You were…so upset, but you told me that you knew that you had to be there for your mom. You knew what she was in for when your dad left…I….I know you love your mom, Theresa. No matter what she’s done…underneath all that anger. Billie’s tears up, in spite of her best efforts. The door to the room opens, startling Billie. Daniel walks in, allowing Billie to relax a bit. She gets up from her chair, regardless. BILLIE: Daniel… DANIEL: You…probably shouldn’t be here right now. BILLIE: I know. I just…I needed to cool off a bit. Daniel looks on, concerned, noticing Billie’s teary eyes. DANIEL: Yeah, I’m not so sure you succeeded at that. BILLIE: Yeah. Really. Billie wipes the tears from her eyes, and puts her hands on her hips, trying to regain her composure. BILLIE: Look…uh…Daniel…about…earlier. DANIEL: Billie, I…I can’t talk about it, you know that. Billie holds up her hands to stop Daniel continuing. BILLIE: I know. Look, it’s…it’s not about that. I just…look, I know we haven’t been together very long, but...you know…listening to you talking to Laura and…doing…whatever you’re doing to protect Jennifer…I…I mean… Daniel looks at Billie with uncertainty. DANIEL: What are you saying? BILLIE: Daniel, you’re still in love with Jennifer, aren’t you? --- Nicole slams her files down on her desk in frustration. Sighing audibly, she begins talking to herself aloud. NICOLE: And yet again, my shadow follows me. (sigh) Except now I gotta work for her. Dammit! As she raises her fist in aggravation, she stops herself. NICOLE: Having said this...EJ did give me the go-ahead to do the EnerNext exposé... Nicole smirks a bit, realizing how this could work to her advantage. NICOLE: Maybe that little bastard Nick isn't such a bad guy after all. Laughing to herself, Nicole is suddenly interrupted by a text message. Searching momentarily for her phone, she finds it. Picking it up, she swipes over to check her messages. It's from Eric. meet me @ Anderson park 535. dont b late, its important. Love, eric Nicole looks a bit concerned. She scrunches up her face. NICOLE: Hm! Wonder what HE wants. Maybe he's finally made up his mind... Nicole stops herself a moment before continuing, laughing sarcastically. NICOLE: Right. Maybe the Pope's become an atheist too! God, I need a drink. Good thing TBD's near the park. Nicole grabs her files, shoves them hastily into her briefcase before grabbing her coat, and heading out of her office. --- Tyler sits uncomfortably in his seat in Victor's office at Titan, as he tries to talk his way out of his dismissive comment against Maggie he just made to Victor. Victor, meanwhile, stands in the corner of the room, sorting through some documents. TYLER: I...I'm sorry, Victor. I didn't realize...Maggie was...your...wife. Victor turns, smiling wryly as he saunters over to his desk, slowly sitting himself down in his executive chair. VICTOR: I had a feeling. Personally, I'm amazed you've made it this far in business without learning to do your due diligence. A man in your position could stand to be a bit more careful. Tyler swallows hard, nodding fervently as he swivels himself slightly to reach a jug of water on Victor's desk. Pouring himself a glass, he continues to backtrack. TYLER: Well...knowing what I do about Maggie now...I...well...she'd be a great fit. I will say though... Victor glares Tyler's way as Tyler continues to fumble. TYLER: You, uh...you might want to take a few days to...you know....assess the situation. VICTOR: Well, naturally, I'll be attending to some other things, dealing with the last of Brady's affairs with Titan, and handling the selloff of Titan TV. Tyler, suddenly snapping out of his own worries, remembers something important to bring up to Victor. Scurrying to grab his tablet, Tyler gets up from his seat, and walks to Victor's side of the desk. TYLER: Speaking of which, you uhh...you might want to look at this. Tyler hands Victor his tablet, showing the news report, revealing DiMera Enterprises has acquired Titan TV. Victor's rage escalates immediately. VICTOR: Dammit! --- Gabi walks carefully down the steps onto the foggy pier, looking cautiously around for Liam. Spotting him approach through the mist, she looks nonchalantly about before heading his way. Gabi cautiously looks around before speaking to Liam, who never quite looks her in the eye as they chat. GABI: Have you got it? LIAM: Yeah. Gabi looks at Liam intensely suddenly, holding out her hand in anticipation, but Liam doesn’t hand the bag containing the pills quite so quickly. LIAM: NOT…so fast. I didn’t go to all this trouble for you to just grab and go. You need to understand a few things first. Gabi breathes quickly, very uncomfortable suddenly with a very intense Liam. --- --- Jerome is escorted by Hope into the police station in handcuffs. He stays silent, but has an intense, embittered look on his face as Hope leads him into the interrogation room, where a curious Rafe joins them. Looking over, he points toward Jerome. RAFE: Who's this? HOPE: THIS is the burglar that's been targeting the houses in the west end. RAFE: Is that so? Well, then I guess it's time we had a little chat then, huh? JEROME: I'd love to...after my lawyer shows up. Hope rolls her eyes as Rafe leans over the table, trying to stare Jerome down. Jerome won't engage. He stares at the floor, head tilted. RAFE: You'll talk now if you know what's good for you, man. That's the eighth house you've hit this month. You're a hard man to track down! JEROME: I thought I was entitled to a phone call. Rafe grins, shaking his head. RAFE: Heh. Yeah, no. You're not entitled to one. JEROME: I know my rights. What little I have-- RAFE: ...You've been watching too much Law & Order. You're not going anywhere until we hear those magic words. Jerome sighs, fighting his urge to roll his eyes. He simply closes them and responds as if on cue. JEROME: Please? HOPE: Wrong magic words, Jerome. He means "I did it". Jerome finally turns to face Hope and Rafe, as if suddenly HIS magic words have been spoken. He looks intensely at Hope as his temper flares. JEROME: Would it make a difference if I did? HOPE: What's that supposed to mean? JEROME: It means when a black man is in the wrong place at the wrong time, he could saving the President from a terrorist attack and you suckers would think he's the one trying to kill him! Rafe steps toward Jerome in anger, but Hope holds him back. She focuses in on Rafe a moment, speaking softly to him. HOPE: No. We're doing this my way, okay? After a moment, Rafe cools off and nods. Hope turns back to Jerome. HOPE: You want your lawyer? Call them. JEROME: I need to contact my grandmother to get a lawyer for me. Hope sighs. She walks up to Jerome. HOPE: Stand up. Jerome responds dutifully, as Hope walks him toward the door. Rafe hangs back, as Hope leads Jerome out into the main room, Rafe following behind them, arms folded, looking imposing. HOPE: We have to book you anyway. RAFE: You alright or you want me around? HOPE: I think I can handle this one. RAFE: Alright. Suit yourself. You know where to find me. HOPE: Yup...alright, sit down here. Jerome sits down in front of the desk, as Hope motions another cop to stand behind Jerome to monitor him, which elicits a momentary eye roll from Jerome. Hope barely notices as she pulls up the file on the computer. HOPE: Right. Full name. JEROME: I'm not getting my phone call first-- Hope interrupts in a booming voice that could silence a football field. HOPE: FULL NAME. Jerome looks down again, defeat in his voice as he responds. JEROME: Jerome Grant. Hope looks up suddenly, taken aback by Jerome's last name. HOPE: Uh...right. I think the uh...booking can wait. Did you...your phone call. It was to... JEROME: University Hospital. Ask for Valerie Grant. Hope looks over at Jerome, wide eyed, her cool truly lost. --- Daniel and Billie walk into Daniel's office. Daniel shuts the door behind them as Billie walks in, still emotional from her visit with Theresa, and with her questions for Daniel. BILLIE: You didn't answer me, Daniel. DANIEL: No, I didn't. Because I wasn't going to start an argument in a room you're not even supposed to be in. Billie sighs as Daniel walks over to her, putting his hands firmly on her upper arms. He holds her there, staring deeply into her eyes. DANIEL: Look...Billie, I know it hasn't been that long that I've been...separated from Jennifer, but....you really need to understand. What she and I had together...it's over. Completely. BILLIE: That's not what I asked, Daniel. Billie tries to shake Daniel off of her, but Daniel lets go anyway. Billie starts to pace the room, looking down as she carefully chooses her words. BILLIE: Look...I don't want to bring up the past and...painful memories any more than you do, but...when I saw Laura in your office, and you were talking about helping Jenn and Abby out, I...I saw the look in your eye, Daniel. You still love her. DANIEL: Well, yes. I mean...it's not like those feelings just...disappear overnight, you know. I mean...yes...YES, I love Jenn. I probably always will. But, Billie... Daniel walks back over to Billie and tenderly caresses her cheek with his hand. Billie initially tries to wriggle away but relents quickly, as Daniel continues. DANIEL: I'm IN love with you. That's all that matters. Billie says nothing, sighing a bit as she leans her face into Daniel's hand. DANIEL: Right? Billie starts to crack a smile as she steps toward Daniel, putting her arms around him. BILLIE: I guess...I guess you're right. DANIEL: Thaaaat's better. Daniel smiles as he holds Billie. They lean in for a kiss. Separating, Billie smiles. BILLIE: Look. I...I have to get going. Thanks again for getting me in there today. DANIEL: Anytime. BILLIE: Uh...maybe we can meet up tonight? Dinner at my... Daniel looks at Billie, shaking his head. BILLIE: ...mom's...bad idea. Simultaneously they shake their heads, responding over each other.# DANIEL: Baaaaad idea. BILLIE: Yeah, no. Not going there. Well...I'll text you? DANIEL: Better idea. BILLIE: Alright. Billie leans against the doorway to Daniel's office, she smiles playfully, blowing a kiss Daniel's way. BILLIE: I love you. DANIEL: I love you too. As Billie turns the corner, her expression changes immediately to one of determination. BILLIE: Alright, Daniel. What are you trying to protect Jenn from, and why are you Laura's only hope. Inside Daniel's office, Daniel shakes his head, expression changed as well, as he mulls over what he knows about Jenn, and Abby. DANIEL: God, I hope Billie doesn't go digging now. I'm not even sure Abby's safe now. God help her if Billie gets involved. --- Gabi looks fearfully at Liam, who's grabbed her one arm, hands her a plastic pharmacy bag, containing a bottle of what's marked as generic Acetaminophen, and Marlena's stolen perscription pad. GABI: What...what's in here? LIAM: Everything you asked for. But you can't go demanding anything like this again. It's too risky. You got it? No more contact. Gabi nods furiously, scared stiff. LIAM: Okay, here's what you need to know. These are Dr. Marlena Evans' perscription pads. Slip them in his bag when his back's turned, and make sure they nab the guy this time. GABI: Okay. Okay. Look, what if this doesn't work? LIAM: Then he's your problem. There's no third chance here. Gabi sighs. Eventually nodding. She grabs the bag and runs off, stopping momentarily to thank Liam. GABI: Thank-- Gabi looks and finds Liam's already vanished into the mist. Gabi sighs audibly and heads quickly back up toward the pub. GABI: This HAS to work. Please, God. For my daughter's sake. Gabi looks around again, careful not to be seen by anyone as she makes her way up the steps from the pier. --- Nicole walks into the clearing at the park. Looking around for Eric, she doesn't see him. Or anyone. She stands in her winter coat, shivering as she goes to grab her phone from her purse. She looks down to see a bright red envelope attached to the bench in front of her. Intrigued, she steps towards it, picking it up. Her name is on the front. Opening it, she begins to crack a smile as she sees the card inside. She pulls the all-white card from the envelope and reads its inscription. Nicole looks up. NICOLE: 8-3-5? What the...? Jarred by the abrupt end to the letter, she begins looking around again. She notices a single red rose on the ground on the other side of the bench. Tilting her head around, she approaches it. Picking it up, she sees a trail of roses leading into a larger, but dimly lit clearing on the other side of the bushes. As it's getting dark, she fishes through her bag to pull out a small flashlight she keeps on her keychain. Following the trail leads her to a small box with a combination lock on it. Nicole studies the box carefully as she picks it up. A song gently begins as she does. (0:13) Nicole checks the note again and begins to plug in the combination. --- (0:26) Valerie hears her office phone ring at the hospital, as she prepares to leave for the day. Picking up the receiver, she's immediately upset by what she hears on the other end. Tearing up as she shakes her head, she responds to the person on the other end shortly before hanging up. --- (0:51) Jerome looks straight ahead, a distant blank look in his eye as the phone is placed back down at the police station. Hope looks on, now more distracted and concerned than she would normally be on the job. She tries to speak to Jerome. HOPE: Is she on her way? Jerome doesn't answer, lost in his own mind, he doesn't even look Hope's way. HOPE: Jerome? Knowing he's not paying attention, Hope carries on with the paperwork, sighing in resignation. --- (1:30) Billie drives down the road, deep in thought about her friend Jennifer and the insecurity she feels about her relationship with Daniel, as well as the tragic circumstances that have led to her close friend Theresa ending up in a coma she may not wake up from, and Kim barring Billie from visiting Theresa in hospital. Distracted, she begins to veer into oncoming traffic. (1:55) She catches herself as a horn blares out, causing her to quickly jerk the steering wheel right, pulling her car over to the shoulder. Braking hard, she begins to tear up. Resting her head against the steering wheel, she lets her emotions out, crying hard in her car. --- (2:08) Victor sits alone in his office, the headline of DiMera taking over Titan TV resting on his desk. Victor looks over to see a picture of Brady looking back at him. He stares into it, wistfully. --- (2:30) Nicole finishes setting the combination on the box, and opens it. Seeing a beautiful diamond ring, she takes a step back, trying in vain to hold back from crying. (2:45) Eric appears, as a series of lights are turned on via dimmers. Eric smiles warmly at a teary-eyed Nicole. The lights are strung up to read "Will you marry me?". Nicole reads them over, and tears up even more. ERIC: So...I've been doing some thinking. Nicole laughs through her tears, Eric joining her. Nicole responds as she wipes her tears away. NICOLE: I can see that. ERIC: I just want you to know that...if doing the right thing means a life without you...I don't want that life. Nicole wraps her arms around Eric, moved beyond words. ERIC: Nicole. I love you...so...much. So...what do you say? Nicole breathes in deeply, as Eric gets on one knee to put the ring on her finger. ERIC: Nicole Walker. Will you marry me? (3:34) Nicole shouts out her answer, bouncing in place, still freezing. NICOLE: Oh my God, YES! Eric puts the ring on, lifting Nicole into the air for a passionate kiss that they wish would never end. Eric and Nicole's hands wrap around each other, holding each other tightly as they kiss with an intensity that heats up the cold evening. When they do end their kiss, Nicole rests in Eric's arms, as they tenderly hold each other, Nicole's tears still smearing her mascara. Eric looks on with a look that shows he's finally at peace. ---
EPISODE 70 Written by A. Washington-Beeby Story Consultants: ML Cooks & C. Nathaniel Richardson Eric sits alone by the river, skipping stones into the river as he stares ahead intently. Deep in intense thought, he doesn't hear as Nicole approaches him carefully. As not to scare him, she simply takes her heels off and sits down with him. Eric finally stops to look and see Nicole sitting next to him before going back to looking out at the water. Nicole hesitates before finally speaking up, speaking gently to not antagonize Eric any further. NICOLE: You're not an easy man to find, you know. ERIC: I hate to say it, Nicole but...that was kinda the goal. NICOLE: I went to St. Luke's first thing and...they suggested coming out here, since you used to head out to the riverside whenever you were feeling lost. ERIC: I'm amazed you didn't know that. Nicole laughs half-heartedly. NICOLE: I guess I was too focused on not...falling back in love with you to notice? Sounds corny, doesn't it? Eric softens a bit at Nicole's words. He looks her way again, giving half a smile before he speaks, then returning to looking away at the water. ERIC: Nah...I understand. NICOLE: Well...I don't. What happened at the square that's got you so upset? You were fine before-- Eric tenses again, interrupting Nicole immediately. ERIC: ...It's nothing. Just...(sigh) Marlena gave me some news and... NICOLE: And? Come on, Eric, what is it? Is everything okay? ERIC: Will and Sonny are getting married. Nicole looks at Eric, confused by what he's saying until she suddenly clues in and reacts. NICOLE: I don't...wait, Eric. What are you saying? Do you have a problem with Will and Sonny getting married? Eric looks at Nicole, an upset and frustrated look on his face, matching Nicole's confused and disappointed look. --- Will storms into his shared apartment, with Sonny following not far behind. Will appears to ignore him, as he walks into the bedroom, leaving Sonny in the living room. Will walks back out with blankets and a pillow, hastily piled together and throws them down on the sofa, his eyes laser-focused on Sonny. Sonny looks at Will with concern and points to the sofa. SONNY: What, you're not gonna sleep out here tonight, are you? Will folds his arms and keeps his eyes focused on Sonny, a cold anger in his eyes. WILL: No. You are. Will turns and walks back into the bedroom, and shouts out to Sonny before the door slams. WILL: Goodnight! Sonny closes his eyes, wincing at the sound of the door slamming. --- Gabi stands in the park with Hope. She stammers, trying to cover herself about her plan for Nick. GABI: I...I meant I...I was so sure because he was...he was...he's been acting... Hope motions to Gabi to spit it out, finally finishing Gabi's sentence for her. HOPE: ...unusual? Like he had been before? Gabi nods, looking up hesitantly at Hope. GABI: Yeah. HOPE: Well, the thing is, Gabi. I don't buy it. Any of it. Gabi looks up, shocked by Hope's rebuttal. GABI: What?! HOPE: Gabi, I spent all afternoon with Nick. He seemed absolutely fine. GABI: No, no no no no, you don't understand. I saw him taking something this morning, I was out with him last night, he was off, he was... HOPE: Drunk, Gabi? Maybe he had a hangover and took an Aspirin. You know, people DO that sometimes. GABI: No, Hope, you don't understand. You need to go back and check his bag again. I'm telling you he's got to be on something. Hope shakes her head, silencing Gabi. HOPE: I can't. I looked, there was nothing. Look, Gabi, I'm worried about Nick too. I'm worried he isn't making the progress I thought he was after this whole ordeal with you and Sonny and Will, but...I can't just go searching through people's stuff on a whim. If I do find something? Gabi, it wouldn't hold up in court. It sure as hell wouldn't help Nick. Gabi looks pleadingly at Hope, petrified that her plan will fall through. GABI: Hope, please! HOPE: No. Gabi, I'm sorry. But until you can find me proof that something is up with Nick, I can't...and I won't go snooping again. I'll see you later. Hope walks off back toward the town square, leaving Gabi behind, shaking with anger and disappointment. GABI: Damn you, Nick. Damn you. --- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Og7-6YubuS4 --- Billie steps into Club TBD, and, upon seeing Justin waving from one of the corner booths, smiles and heads over to him. BILLIE: Justin. JUSTIN: Billie! Long time, no see. Billie puts her bag down and sits down across from Justin at the table. BILLIE: Ha ha. Glad to see you're still keeping your sense of humour. JUSTIN: Well, we do what we can, even when we're the pariah of the family. BILLIE: I'm sure. Victor must be really livid with you about the divestment deal with Titan TV. Justin shrugs, clearly resigned to his fate. JUSTIN: It is what it is. Victor couldn't hold onto both the station and the oil sands project. I just...forced his hand a little. BILLIE: Well...I'm glad you did. Justin looks to Billie, intrigued by her interest. JUSTIN: Why's that? I mean...I know you voted in favour of divesting, but...I mean, you work with MadWorld, why do you care what happens to EnerNext? Billie looks to Justin, knowing what direction he's taking this conversation, she stops herself and gives Justin a 'gotcha' smile. BILLIE: I don't think you wanna get into that. JUSTIN: Oh, but I'm SO fascinated. Do tell! BILLIE: Let's just say that I want what's best for everyone at Titan. Now, let's get to why I asked you to meet me here. Billie reaches down into her bag and pulls out an envelope, containing the restraining order Kim presented her with earlier. JUSTIN: Is this business or...? BILLIE: Personal. But...I'm pretty sure I know which lawyer my, uh...the other party in this whole...situation consulted, so... JUSTIN: Say no more. So what's this about? Billie hands Justin her copy of the restairaing order. BILLIE: Well...obviously, since Brady and Theresa's accident...I've been visiting Theresa at the hospital for the last few days. JUSTIN: Right. And that...from what I can see here...really displeased Kim. BILLIE: That's...(sigh) putting it mildly. Justin, she hates that I have a relationship with her daughter. She gave some judge a...sob story about me harrassing her and her daughter and he bought it. Justin looks up from the order and shakes his head slowly. JUSTIN: I hate to tell you this, but a restraining order is very easy to put into effect. Billie looks a bit disappointed at Justin. Sighing as she speaks, she responds. BILLIE: And...not so easy to get lifted. JUSTIN: Unfortunately. So...whatever issues you're having with Kim, you may just have to find a way to work around them, I'm sorry to say. Billie nods, pondering over what Justin's said, gears turning in her mind. --- Gabi unlocks the door to the apartment and sees Sonny watching TV on the couch alone, blankets covering him. She looks on, confused, as she speaks softly, trying not to wake Ari. GABI: I...what are you doing out here? Sonny looks up from the TV, a resigned, shamed look on his face. SONNY: I'm uh...I'm kind of in the dog house right now. Gabi looks confused as she turns on the light in the living room. Sonny squints with the sudden change in light. SONNY: Ugh. GABI: What did YOU do to get thrown out of the bedroom. SONNY:Ohhh nothing huge, just...lied to Will about where I was going and then tried to convince my Uncle Vic that he should rescind Will's job offer. Gabi looks surprised and upset by Sonny's confession, nearly blurting out her surprise aloud before catching herself and returning to a soft voice, this time, agitated. GABI: I...you...are you serious, Sonny?? What kind of stupid move is that? SONNY: I know! I know...I should've just...kept my mouth shut. GABI: You don't say. You know I was waiting for you guys to come around at the memorial service and you never showed. I was getting worried something was wrong. Obviously, I had good reason to worry. SONNY: Yeah....and now Will is...so mad he's threatening to call off the engagement and...I...I just feel like a...an ass. So...yeah, sorry we couldn't meet you at the memorial. Gabi gets up off the couch and walks over to the kitchen to grab a drink of water, as Sonny looks at the time and realizes how late it is. SONNY: Oh yeah, speaking of which, that...that was...hours ago...where have you been, anyway? Gabi nearly spits out the water as she drinks it, trying to come up with an answer for Sonny. GABI: I, uh...I was catching up with Will's family. They...wanted to see Ari. Sonny nods, a bit unconvinced, but willing to accept Gabi's answer. SONNY: Makes sense. Gabi walks back around to sit beside Sonny, concerned more for him than her own trouble, she puts a comforting hand on his knee. GABI: So? What are you gonna do about you and Will? You think you'll work through this? Sonny sighs looking down at the floor in contemplation, almost as though Gabi weren't even in the room. SONNY: I'm not sure...I'm just not sure. --- Will stands in the bedroom, staring intently out his window at the moon shining outside. He looks at the alarm clock beside his bed and sighs, knowing he won't be able to sleep, between the pressure of the new day and new job, and his pressures at home with Sonny, Gabi, and Nick, Will has a lot on his mind, as, saying nothing, he closes his eyes, as if to make a wish. --- Eric stares up at the same night sky, by the river, Nicole by his side, upset by his reaction to the news of Sonny and Will's engagement. NICOLE: I mean, you can't be against them getting married. I never took you for a bigot, Eric-- Eric interrupts Nicole, clearly irritated by her implicit accusation. ERIC: ...I don't have a problem with them getting married. I mean...(sigh) It's complicated. Nicole looks on, confused by Eric's statement, she responds more emphatically this time. NICOLE: What's complicated about it, Eric? They love each other. They...they take care of that baby better than I've ever seen anyone care for a baby. There's...so much love in that home...that's the stuff marriages are made of...not that I'd know from experience or anything, but... ERIC: But there's more to it than that. Nicole, I've spent years dedicated to a church that tells me that marriage is a sacred vow under God between a man and a woman. It's about creating children together, and having their love recognized by God under his laws... Eric trails off at this point, clearly troubled by what he's saying. ERIC: ...but I can't look at Sonny and Will and think that their love's any different. And how can I reconcile that with what my beliefs have taught me? Nicole tries, unsuccessfully, to bring some levity to Eric's clearly troubled mind. NICOLE: Well...it's not like you've tried stoning me to death for not being a virgin on my wedding day. Eric looks up at Nicole, a wry smile on his face as Nicole chuckles and leans into Eric, playfully. NICOLE: Come on, Eric. My point is, maybe it's time you stopped following the....silly little intricate rules of the Bible and just...followed the basic outline. I mean...come on, one day...down the road, I'd love to get married to you, and I know you won't let some...archaic rule about not divorcing stop you from marrying me, right? Eric hesitates to answer, making Nicole nervous almost instantly. She looks back at Eric, very frantic, very fast. NICOLE: Right?? Eric looks up at Nicole. ERIC: That's the thing, Nicole. I don't think I can. NIcole's face turns white as a sheet at Eric's revelation. ---