Paul meets up with Nikki and they go over the check list. They have the dinner rehearsal ready, they have the wedding rings and Paul tells her he can’t wait til tomorrow. Victor walks over to Nikki and asks if she is ready for the big day. He wishes her and Paul all the best. She thanks him and asks if he is ready for this. He asks if she is. She says she has found a good and kind man that would never hurt anyone. Victor says yes but that doesn’t answer his question. She says it is because it is a ridiculous question. He tells her that she is marrying Paul because he is safe and he loves her far more than she loves him. He says that it’s a pity for both of them. He walks away leaving Nikki to wonder about that.

Ashley decides to take Zapato out for a walk when Adam comes along announcing that the cook is making quiche for lunch which is the highlight of his day. They both laugh saying they are going a little stir crazy. Adam mentions Victor’s lies saying they would make anyone crazy, and then says not that he is saying she is crazy. She thinks Adam is so sweet and such a comfort to her as well as Zapato. She says she doesn’t know what she would do without him.

Victoria congratulates Nick on renewing his vows. She tells him about her and JT fighting and that they have a few things to work on. She says it must be the Newman curse. She says staying married is a lot harder than getting married. JT comes in with some photos for Paul for the display they are working on for Nikki and Paul’s wedding. He says Reed is having fun with Phyllis and Summer. Nick mentions JT not being at Newman’s anymore. JT tells him it never fit like a suit anyway and now he is looking forward to a change.

Paul goes to see Jack and Jack tells him he knows now for sure that Mary Jane is back in town. He says he slept with her last night. Next we see Mary Jane in the woody area at the ranch. She says too bad Kitty can’t be laid to rest there. She says that beast needs to be punished.

Back at the ranch Ashley is having a fit because she has lost Zapato saying she has to find him. Adam comes in and tells her Zapato isn’t upstairs either.

Nick reminds JT that both he and his sister left Newman but they both went back. JT says he doesn’t think that’s in the cards for him and then he leaves to meet Paul. Victoria tells him she will see him at the church. Nick tells Victoria he has to admire JT for what he is doing. Nick is going through the photos and he finds one and tells Victoria to look at this one. He holds up a photo of Nikki and Victor and Nick remarks that they were so young.

Nikki is happy to see Father Todd, Paul’s brother, at the chapel. He tells her that his brother is one lucky guy. She said he would be happy to fill in for the rehearsal. He hands Nikki an old picture of her and Paul that he found. Nikki thinks back to the young couple in love and she suddenly Victor’s words ring through her mind. She sniffs her bouquet as she now thinks about Paul’s proposal but before she knows it she is thinking about Victor’s proposal. She is shocked that the thought even entered her mind wondering where it even came from.

Jack shows Paul the note from Mary Jane. Jack tells him he got drunk last night and he possibly could have been drugged. He slept with Mary Jane thinking it was Sharon. Paul tells him if this is true he is lucky he is even alive and agrees that she possibly could have spiked his drink. Jack says and then there was he dead cat’s tail.

Victor is wondering now where Zapato is. When he goes outside to check Adam has no problem consoling Ashley. Victor finds Zapato outside on the front step laying down. He tells Zapato that he looks tired as he pets him.

Nikki is sitting in one of the pews at the church when she thinks back to the first time she married Victor. Then she remembers marrying him again as she laid in her hospital bed. Then yet another time as they promised to make it work this time as they were married in the Colonnade room. Victoria comes in and Nikki admits to her that she was daydreaming about how many times she has walked down the aisle. Victoria says half of those weddings were with her father. She tells Nikki she and Paul look so happy. Then she asks Nikki if she is having any doubts.

Victor calls a vet in who tells him that Zapato has been exposed to some sort of toxin and he needs to take him to the clinic for some tests. Ashley blames herself for letting him go off his leash when they were spraying for ticks by the stables. When asked if this could have been done intentionally, the vet says he will need to do some tests first and then he should know.

Paul calls Victor informing him that Mary Jane is back in town. Victor tells him that his dog has been poisoned and asks if Paul can come over. Paul says he has his rehearsal dinner and then he will be going out of town for a few days but JT will be covering for him. Paul talks to JT at Crimson Lights and gives him the rings and announces that he is giving him a partnership in the business. He hands him business cards which reads, Williams and Hellstrum Investigations!

Victoria tells Nikki it is natural that she would be thinking about Victor today. She says it is healthy and good though to get it all out of her system right now. Nikki thanks her for the good advice. Victoria says if only she could fix her own relationship. After Victoria leaves Nikki starts thinking back again about Victor and some of their times together.

The vet says she is sorry when Ashley asks if Zapato is dead. Adam is there again consoling Ashley telling her at least he is at peace. Victor asks the vet to find out if Zapato was poisoned and when the vet leaves Victor breaks down.

JT says he doesn’t need to talk it over with Victoria about going in partnership with Paul. He accepts right away. Paul says great and then fills him in on his first case, Mary Jane Benson. He tells JT she has been torturing Ashley, she hurt Summer and for some unknown reason she is fixated on Jack. JT says he should have followed his instincts when he caught her sneaking around at the ranch.

Jack comes in at the chapel and wishes Nikki the best. He says he hopes she and Paul will truly be happy. She wishes he and Sharon were happy too since she knows how much he loves her and the baby. Nikki says she often wonders what might have happened if the baby they had hadn’t been born stillborn. Jack tells her he thinks about that a lot saying a child bonds a couple forever. Nikki thinks about Victor once again as she and Jack light a candle for the baby they lost together. Jack tells Nikki she deserves better than the moustache. She needs a man that will put her first so he wishes her luck. She thinks back to the bitter fights she had with Victor and all his harsh words to her.

Ashley still blames herself for Zapato’s death. Victor tells her it isn’t her fault and sends her upstairs to rest. When she is gone Victor tells Adam that Mary Jane is back in town bit not to tell Ashley. Adam says this Mary Jane is a psycho and he asks if he thinks she has something to do with what happened to Zapato. He says security is being stepped up yet again.

Jack stops out at the ranch. He tells Adam when he comes in that he left something in his car. Adam says ok let him go get it but stops and says oh gee he can’t because he has an ankle bracelet on, he can’t go. Jack finds Victor on the phone telling security that no one but the immediate family is allowed in. Jack says he isn’t there this time to see Ashley. He came to talk to Victor about Mary Jane. He asks if Victor has seen her since the wedding. He says that Paul suggested that they work together on this. Victor tells him that Zapato was poisoned. Jack says he has hired security too saying they will be showing up tonight. Victor tells Jack not to tell Ashley about that lunatic just as she comes downstairs to overhear.

Nick stops by the chapel and teases Nikki about not having a wild bachelorette party. He tells her to wait until she sees Summer in her amazing flower girl dress. Nikki asks Nick if he will do her a favor. He tells her he will do anything. She asks if he will walk her down the aisle and give her away. Nick gives Nikki his official seal of approval and then he says he would be honored to walk his mother down the aisle. He thinks it is good seeing him mother moving forward. Nick tells him mother that he thinks Paul is good for her. When he leaves Nikki thinks back to how sweet Paul has been to her including his sweet wedding proposal.

JT and Victoria have a tense conversation together about him agreeing to work with Paul without talking to her about it first. Nick walks up and interrupts their conversation and then Paul comes up to introduce his brother Father Todd. Nick welcomes him to the family.

Ashley asks Jack and Victor if they are arguing again. She says she just wants some peace and quiet and she wants to know if that is too much for her to ask for. Jack says he is sorry to hear about Zapato and since Ashley won’t come home with him he offers to be there in a flash if she needs him. When he leaves, Victor agrees with him about them keeping each other posted if they see or hear anything.

Mary Jane goes to the Abbott home with a bouquet of flowers and a note to telling Jack thanks for last night and she says she will by to see him again really soon. She signs it that she loves him. She leaves them both at the front door and then walks away with a smile on her face.

Paul goes over to Nikki and asks her if she hears that noise. She asks what noise. He tells her it is a clacking sound. He says it is his knees knocking. He gives her a wedding gift. She opens it and finds a necklace with an ice cream cone charm, to symbolize their meeting. He says he wouldn’t change a single step in their long journey. She is so touched as she holds her hair up for him to put it on for her. She tells him she can’t wait to take those final steps of that journey with him down the aisle tomorrow and they kiss.

Jan Barrett

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