Any problems with the shipment?
No, we got everything out.
All reliable people?
No one who hasn't worked for us before.
You checked the routes?
So check them again,
'cause I'm gonna make sure it's all covered.
Are you getting pressure from somebody?
No, it's -- You know, it's all quiet, routine.
But that's when people get sloppy,
they start making mistakes.
Okay, I'll check the routes again.
One more thing.
What the hell's going on with Carly?
Is one of those for me?
Yeah, blueberry smoothie with a little bit of protein.
Full of antioxidants.
Ah. Thank you. That's very thoughtful of you.
Is there kelp in this?
Mm. That's pretty good.
I promise you, when all of this is over,
there's a nice bottle of Bordeaux with your name on it.
I thought all of this was supposed to be over tonight.
She's warm and she's dry and she's safe.
She wanted us to read another chapter of "Little Women,"
but her eyes were closed by the second paragraph.
Hypothermia can be exhausting.
She doesn't have hypothermia.
She wouldn't be home if she had hypothermia.
She's okay. The doctors say she's fine.
No thanks to that lamentable excuse for a mother.
What was Lulu thinking,
letting the child fall into the harbor?
She didn't fall in.
[ Door closes ]
Laura: Hey, Curtis.
Thanks for coming.
How you holding up?
Well, I'm still in shock.
Out of nowhere, Charlotte took a running start
and jumped off the pier.
She was certain that her bodyguard would save her.
Charlotte jumped off the pier?
What's this about a bodyguard?
Evidently, Charlotte was willing to risk her life
to prove he was real.
[ Sighs ]
Here's to you, Helena Cassadine.
You made one hell of an exit.
What more can a gal ask?
[ Door opens ]
[ Footsteps approaching ]
I knew you'd show up.
You're awfully predictable.
For a dead man.
This is such a good martini.
I'd offer to fix you one, but...my hands are full.
You don't need the gun.
I certainly needed it the last time you broke in here...
when I told you to take off your mask...
and then there you were.
So real, I could've touched you.
So real, I could've pulled the trigger --
if I hadn't fainted dead away.
I'm feeling much steadier tonight.
Well, the beauty market has just exploded
in the last three decades.
That's why the re-launch of Deception is going to include,
obviously, spas and the whole wellness movement,
but we're also gonna have this amazing
signature line of cosmetics -- strictly organic.
Let me stop you right there.
Let me at least show you the PowerPoint, because it's amazing.
I did it all myself.
I loved Deception in the early '90s.
That plucky little company with the unforgettable face.
But I cannot make a serious investment in nostalgia,
so unless you have something compelling to show me --
You know what? Just wait. Hold that thought.
I do. I really, really do.
So, hold that thought just one moment.
I'll be right back. Excuse me. Sorry. Excuse me.
Listen, please, please, I'm begging you.
Just go along with whatever I do, whatever I say.
Please with a cherry on top, sugar on top.
What -- what --
Alyssa, I am so excited to present to you,
uh, a very dear friend,
and she is going to help me make my vision happen.
May I present the new face of Deception,
You know what? I'm gonna go check on her.
She's not gonna wake up, but I want to make sure I'm there if she does.
For such a cold-blooded manipulator,
Valentin certainly loves that child.
You still think Valentin is a manipulator?
My dear, a leopard doesn't change his spots.
Neither does a leopardess.
I know that you helped Valentin pass Sasha off as my daughter,
and I am giving you one last chance to tell me how.
I'm here to help in any way I can,
but I'm not exactly sure why I'm here.
We might have to ask you to dig up some dirt on Valentin.
You know, something that we could use against him
in a custody battle.
I thought Charlotte's custody was already settled.
Valentin is saying that this was my fault --
I wasn't watching Charlotte closely enough.
And, of course, you were.
Lulu, no one could doubt that.
Well, Valentin does.
He wants to go back to family court
and amend our custody order.
He's gonna shoot himself in the foot.
Everybody knows you're a great mom.
They're all gonna line up to testify for you.
I am sure that I can dig up enough dirt against Valentin
that you can use it in family court.
What's worse than Charlotte nearly drowning
while she was with me?
Lulu, let's talk about why Charlotte jumped in the harbor
and maybe a little bit more about this bodyguard.
She's been talking about him for a while now.
Honestly, I thought it was some part of a game.
Actually, I think we need to focus on
why it was so important for Charlotte to believe
that her...bodyguard would come to her rescue.
Tell me why you're here.
[ Chuckles lightly ]
You must know.
Tell me anyway.
When the painting burned, did the codicil burn with it?
You're gonna have to do better than that.
Well, what do you want?
An apology, to start.
No. No. You know what?
On second thought,
anything you said to me would be a lie,
just like your supposed death.
Your second supposed death.
Not the first one that you staged here in Port Charles,
but the one that I witnessed in Greece.
I almost died that day.
But you didn't.
You just let me believe that you had.
And that's a pattern with you, isn't it?
Your mother, your sister...
You let them all grieve for you.
So, really, why should I be the exception?
Because we had a few nice chats,
shared an unexpected connection?
Because of that kiss?
I kissed a prince.
Sounds like a fairy tale, doesn't it?
But in my story,
the prince turned out to be a liar and a user,
and now --
I will decide how the fairy tale ends.
And right as the gavel came down,
the painting had burst into flames.
Helena's portrait is now just a pile of ashes.
Ava rigged it to burn?
Well, she claims she didn't.
She said it was either Helena or the artist
playing a practical joke from beyond the grave.
I hope you're not on the hook for all that money.
No, of course not.
I mean, the painting was never delivered, so the sale was null and void.
That's the good news.
Bad news is,
the codicil either burnt with the painting
or Ava has it.
Carly's hiding something. Any idea what?
She didn't talk to you about anything, maybe?
You know, we talk. Usually about Sam and the kids.
And, you know, it was Carly's idea for me to take
Danny and Scout up to New York for Thanksgiving with them.
She didn't say she's worried about anything
or ask for your help?
Then she's doing this alone, which makes it worse.
Well, do you know when this started?
Yeah, it was after Halloween.
Josslyn wanted to move in with Jax part time.
I thought he'd be all over it. He turned it down.
I asked Carly why.
She picked a fight with me.
I mean, well, you guys -- you guys do fight.
Sometimes it's for good reasons
and for no reason at all.
Yeah, but this --
Lookit, this came out of nowhere.
She -- She -- She's trying to distract me.
I ask her why, and she dodges the question,
picks another fight with me.
Look, I'm telling you right now, I think Jax...
is into something that he shouldn't be...
...and Carly's protecting him.
It doesn't have to be this way.
I say it does.
Start at the beginning.
You and Valentin, you were fighting,
the gun went off.
He shot me. I was unarmed.
You know, I haven't told anybody this,
but as I recall it,
you and Valentin were struggling for that gun.
And so, from his perspective, he was acting in self-defense.
That's not what you told Spencer.
You said Valentin murdered me.
Which, clearly, he did not.
You promised that you would help Spencer prove
that it was wrongful death,
and then you sold out to Valentin.
I was horribly scarred.
I wanted my face back.
And all I had to do was betray your memory.
But, as it turns out,
there was really nothing to betray, was there?
Because you've been alive the whole time!
You make it sound like I was on a vacation.
Well, what, then? Where the hell have you been?
And tell me what payoff could possibly justify
the hell that you put us all through.
You said it yourself --
the codicil's either gone or Ava has it.
None of this is gonna turn out the way Nikolas wants.
Come on, he is not gonna reclaim the Cassadine estate,
he is not going to sell you CI's shipping division --
not that I believe for one second that's why you were doing all this.
Oh, come on. I'm not completely noble.
I could've made a lot of money with that division.
But all right, fine. I did it to help Spencer.
Spencer doesn't need any help!
He's having a ball at his boarding school in France.
He's well taken care of.
Josslyn, on the other hand,
will be devastated if you get deported again.
Then make sure it doesn't happen, Jax.
Call the cops and turn Nikolas in.
Have you and Carly been fighting about anything else?
I still think there's a way to help him.
Carly doesn't agree.
But, look, he did have a bad spell on Thanksgiving,
and, uh, Griffin Munro was in town.
I asked him to look at my dad's chart, and...
he said his, uh... Alzheimer's is progressing.
But it's not over.
He said he's gonna check into something in Sweden
and maybe even the U.S.
What do you think?
I mean, that's not really my -- you know, that's not my call.
Yeah, but I'd -- I'd like to hear what you got to say.
I don't know. Put yourself in Mike's place.
If it was you and your kids were making those decisions,
what would you want?
I'd like them to make the choice that they could live with
'cause I've already lived my life.
What's happened has happened.
And I just -- I'd want them to be at peace.
And I think Mike would want that for you.
Recently, Charlotte's life has been filled with uncertainty.
Dante's absence, his brief and difficult return,
Nina and Valentin's aborted wedding.
She's a little girl
whose world has been in constant upheaval.
Yeah, and that was before
she was held hostage by Cassandra Pierce.
Charlotte knows that Cassandra has a grudge against her father.
Some part of her must realize that this was Valentin's fault,
she doesn't want to blame him.
The bodyguard is...
basically a manifestation of Charlotte's need for safety.
And jumping in the harbor, expecting to be saved
when she knows he's not real?
A cry for help.
Okay, that's it. I'm sorry.
I-I have to go speak with Valentin now, tonight.
Honey, he may not be receptive right now.
I don't care. Kevin's right.
Charlotte needs stability,
not another tug-of-war custody battle.
Okay, Lulu, hold up. I'm going with you, okay?
For moral support and backup.
Yeah, I think that's a good idea.
Thank you. I appreciate the offer.
But Charlotte is my daughter.
It's on me to settle this.
I've lost so many people that I love.
I can't lose you, too.
Just... [ Inhales sharply ]
...tell me the truth.
Are you sure you want to know, Nina?
Ignorance really can be bliss.
You have a man who loves you,
despite his flaws,
and a stepdaughter who adores you.
Is the truth really more important
than the family you've always wanted?
I want you to tell me the truth,
and then I will decide for myself.
Did you help Valentin fake the original DNA tests?
But I know how he did it.
Michael, it's so lovely that you could join us.
Alyssa, have you happened to have ever met Michael Corinthos?
He is the CEO of ELQ.
Well, we have not personally met,
but Chad Bailey speaks very highly of you.
Well, you, too.
He swears you have the uncanny ability
to spot the next big thing.
[ Laughter ]
Well, I don't know if I'd take it that far,
but I am curious about you joining this meeting.
Is ELQ in the beauty market?
Well, we're -- uh, we're in a lot of markets.
Excuse me. I have to check in on somebody.
No -- No, you don't. You can stay. Stay.
M-My father doesn't like to wait.
[ Chuckles ]
Is that the Sonny Corinthos?
You know, the...
Coffee importer and noted philanthropist, yes.
You looking for me?
Yeah, let me ask you a question, father to son.
If I was in my dad's place and you were in mine
and I had Alzheimer's
and it was bad, to the point where I couldn't recognize you,
would you still look for a cure,
even if it was a long shot,
or would you just let me go?
I attended your mother's funeral.
I was a fugitive at the time,
but disguised myself as a homeless woman
and kept to the back of the church.
When the service was over and everyone was gone,
With a DNA kit.
I watched him take a swab from your mother's body.
[ Scoffs ]
from the moment that I found Sasha,
you knew that she was fake?
I was reasonably certain she was working for Valentin.
[ Sighs ]
[ Sniffles ]
I thought you loved me.
Why wouldn't you tell me?
[ Knock on door ]
What are you doing here?
Charlotte's been asleep for ages.
I'm here to see you.
Charlotte could've drowned tonight.
We have to do better for her.
Oh, I agree with that.
Well, if Valentin's gonna compromise,
it would definitely be for Charlotte's sake.
But if he opts for a custody fight,
I promise you, I'll bring you all the dirt I can find.
Curtis, we are so lucky to have you on our side.
[ Chuckles ]
Well, if you all will excuse me,
I'm gonna head to the bar and get a real drink.
[ Laughs ]
So, about this bodyguard, um, there's something else
that I didn't want Lulu to know about right away,
but it might mean something.
Well, lucky for you,
you're married to a highly experienced psychiatrist
who knows how to keep a secret.
Charlotte showed me a picture of her secret bodyguard,
and it was a picture of Nikolas.
I was shot, bleeding.
It was a miracle that someone found me
and pulled me out from the waters.
Actually, it was a yacht crew.
They had just dropped off their owner,
and they were en route back to their home route.
Just a hop, skip, and a jump from Athens.
I was able to get medical attention.
So, while we were all here grieving your watery death,
you were warm and dry and recuperating in Athens.
I was still considered a fugitive.
connected with faking your death the first time.
You know, Nikolas, this story really isn't doing you any favors.
I was waiting for Valentin to stake his claim,
using the papers that he forced me to sign.
You were being held at gunpoint.
I guess we've come full circle.
You were very chivalrous...
Not so much when you were telling me that Kiki was damned.
I'm not proud of what I did.
You're either truly ashamed or just very good at faking it.
Either way, it's of no consequence.
So, you were waiting for Valentin to use the papers...
He never did.
He didn't need to.
My grandfather, Mikkos [Scoffs] left him everything.
But Mikkos had one last surprise.
A codicil disinheriting Valentin
and returning everything back to me.
And it was hidden in Helena's portrait.
The one you destroyed.
Carly, we just got to let this play out until New Year's.
No, no, no, no. We don't have to let this play out.
Okay, I have reason to believe that Valentin is going to be
suffering a reversal of fortune here very soon,
and that's going to give Nikolas an opening.
What kind of opening?
And what's going on with Valentin?
I can't say.
You have me keeping something from Sonny,
lying by omission in my own home to cover for you,
and you can't tell me what's going on here?
I don't want you to be sorry!
I want you to tell me what's going on, Jax!
Jason: Is everything okay?
If you didn't want the portrait destroyed,
you should've told me why it was important,
instead of gaslighting me.
By the way, how long were you having me watched?
A month? Two?
Less than a month.
And it was my mother I was having watched.
So you never thought about me at all?
I thought about you, Ava.
I thought of everything here.
The life I missed, the people I love.
I thought about coming forward.
But I knew if I did,
I would be handing everything to Valentin.
And the codicil was supposed to fix all that?
The codicil would've fixed everything.
It would've given back
everything that was rightfully mine.
It's too bad it's nothing but ashes.
Charlotte was genuinely disappointed
that her bodyguard didn't rescue her.
So, in her mind, her bodyguard is real.
She offered to show me a picture of him,
and then she pulled up this photo of Nikolas
on her mother's phone.
How much does Charlotte actually know about Nikolas?
I honestly don't know.
I'm sure she's heard her mother and I talk about him.
I doubt that she'd be able to recognize a picture of him.
Could it just be that
she was going through photos in her mom's phone,
she saw a picture of a very handsome young man,
and she decided that
that was going to be her secret bodyguard?
Of course it's possible.
I think it's more likely that she did recognize Nikolas...
and chose him for a reason.
Kevin thinks that Charlotte jumped into the harbor
as a cry for help.
She's had so much turmoil.
She must have made up this bodyguard
because she doesn't trust us to make her world safe.
Well, it sounds to me
like you're admitting you're part of the problem.
I needed leverage over Valentin.
I told him what I'd witnessed and blackmailed him.
And you didn't care that I was falling in love
with someone who wasn't my daughter?
It was too late, Nina.
You were already in love with Sasha.
And to Valentin's credit, the more time I spent with her,
the more convinced I became that she was a good daughter to you.
Sasha wasn't trying to take advantage,
and you were happy.
If that little snoop Lulu hadn't eavesdropped
and made it her business to interrupt the wedding,
you could still be happy.
Are you even the tiniest bit sorry?
Sorrier than I can say.
But...perhaps I have a way to make amends.
"Classic" is not the same as "old."
We are gonna use the history
of Deception's glamour and style
to target the current generation.
Tell me more about that.
I don't know.
What do you mean?
I-I don't know.
I mean, I guess I'd have to weigh my need to keep you with me
against your quality of life.
I mean, would it be worth it to put you through
some sort of treatment if it caused you to suffer?
Or would it be worse to refuse the treatment
and then later find out that it could've saved you?
Those are the questions I ask myself,
but I'm not really getting an answer.
What does Mom think?
Well, your mom and I are having
a little bit of... problems right now.
So she probably thinks that part of it's my dad,
part of it is [Chuckles] we just don't agree.
Well, you know, Dad, just talk to her anyway.
I mean, even if she thinks you're dead wrong,
she will always have your back.
I was just, um, convincing Carly
to drink her smoothie that I brought her.
Yeah, he swears there's no kelp in it.
I'm choosing to trust you.
Well, you won't be disappointed.
[ Sighs ]
Okay, so, uh, so, what happened?
Jax is in trouble.
That must have been so frustrating. [ Giggles ]
To go to all that trouble of breaking and entering,
just to realize that Valentin beat you to it
and neither of you could find the painting.
Where was it?
Hiding in plain sight.
I left it in its original frame,
and then I covered it with a rather pedestrian abstract.
Did you find the codicil?
You know, I really ought to thank you,
'cause for a while there, I was concerned
that Valentin might have been clever enough
to find that portrait.
But then you showed up and created the perfect diversion.
And from then on, all I had to worry about
was checking myself out of a mental hospital
and searching the painting.
Once I knew what I was looking for,
it wasn't difficult to find.
You have the codicil.
Of course I do.
See for yourself.
After Valentin left the church,
I took a few strands of my sister's hair.
You can use them to run your own DNA test.
It should have the same result as the ones Valentin ran.
I'm not the one who got Charlotte kidnapped.
Cassandra Pierce was your enemy.
She went after Charlotte because of you.
Uh, Charlotte was with you when Cassandra took her.
Charlotte was with you when she jumped into the harbor.
Sounds like you're the one who's not keeping our daughter safe.
Don't do this.
Please don't drag our daughter into a custody fight.
I was just hoping you'd be a good mother.
But all you're doing is treating her
Oh, you --
like a reflection of yourself --
I love Charlotte! Okay?
You are the one who's selfish!
You spoil her, you indulge her worst impulses!
I treat Charlotte like she's Charlotte.
You just treat her like she's an extension of your ego,
like you're proving to the world that you're perfect Lulu
who can't do anything wrong.
Give me a break. You're a bastard.
Okay, you despise me. I despise you back.
So, how about we just let the family court handle this?
You know what? Let's do that.
And I'm gonna prove just how unfit you are
to be anywhere near Charlotte!
[ Exhales slowly ]
[ Scoffs ]
Lulu sounded upset.
[ Sighs ] This has been an upsetting evening.
In fact, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to bed.
You all right?
Lucy, my COO will contact you directly
for financial arrangements.
Just so wonderful.
I can't tell you how much I loved meeting you.
Take care. We'll talk soon.
[ Chuckles ]
[ Diners gasp ]
Deception is back, baby!
Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah.
Oh, yeah, oh, yeah, oh...
Thanks for waiting.
Hey, Jax. Sure.
So, is there a next step in your plan against Valentin,
or are you cutting your losses
now that the painting has been destroyed?
The plan's still in place.
But I think it's time for a change in tactics.
The getaway van was a rental, okay?
And it was charged to Jax's credit card.
That same night, I went to question Jax,
and it was obvious that he was covering something,
so I'll tell you what I told him.
I told him that I would do anything for you,
I would do anything for Josslyn.
Even if it means helping Jax.
But you got to tell me what's going on, Carly.
Jax is into something illegal.
And if Sonny finds out, he will have him deported.
So Sonny cannot find out.
When Sonny had Jax deported, it took months
for Josslyn to forgive him, and if it happened again,
it would be a million times worse
because Josslyn loves Sonny.
What's worse than being betrayed by someone you love?
I would be ripping my entire family apart
before Donna's 6 months old.
I won't do that to my kids, and I won't do that to Sonny.
You know he's grieving over Mike.
And you know him -- he will lash out in anger,
and before he realizes what he's done, it'll be too late.
Okay, then you let me fix it.
[ Sighs ]
But I'm not gonna ask you to keep a secret from Sonny.
You're not. You're not asking me for my help.
I'm offering you.
And I love you for it. I do.
But listen, Jax said
he'll have all this wrapped up by New Year's Eve.
If it's not handled by then, I will tell you everything.
I need your help.
Carly's in trouble.
We...did...it! We did it.
We did it!
We -- We absolutely secured our angel investor.
And you! You were absolutely amazing.
This is gonna be so much fun.
I cannot wait to book our whole first photoshoot. Yes!
Lucy, I have no intention of being Deception's spokesmodel.
[ Scoffs ] What?
Photoshoots, public appearances, press tours --
none of that appeals to me.
[ Stammering ]
Okay, well, can you at least wait
and let me lock down the investment from Alyssa
and then make that public knowledge?
You didn't let me finish.
Being the face of Deception doesn't appeal to me
unless I have a stake in the company.
Okay, what -- what do you mean? What kind of stake?
An equity partnership.
[ Laughs ] Uh, no, that's completely silly.
No. No, no.
Look, it's gonna be my face out there.
I want a say in the product.
Okay, uh, you have a very good point.
I tell -- I tell you what.
Um, I will generously give you 0.5%.
Michael, you have a lot of experience with negotiations.
Could you be my agent, please?
[ Chuckles ]
[ Laughs ]
No. No! No, no, no, no, no.
Uno, dos. 2.
[ Chuckles ]
You clearly don't want Sasha as much as you claim.
Could you just make it
a realistic, kind of reasonable number, perhaps?
30% -- take it or leave it.
30% of my company?
That -- That's grand larceny.
Well, you started the day
with a brand name and a business plan.
Now, thanks to Sasha,
you have an investor and a face for that brand.
She deserves her fair share.
That's not fair. That really is highway robbery, Michael.
You will still be the controlling partner.
That way, Sasha will be very, very motivated
to make sure that Deception succeeds.
[ Sighs ]
Okay. I will have my attorney draw up the papers.
You really are nothing but a little baby-faced shark.
[ Laughs ]
And you are the owner of a very viable company.
[ Voice breaking ] Hey, welcome to Deception.
I know that we're gonna do great things together.
Charlotte could think of Nikolas as some kind of a hero --
a flawed prince.
Who better to imagine as her rescuer?
Well, if Nikolas were still alive,
then the source of tension
between Lulu and Valentin would be gone.
It's possible she just wants her parents
to stop hating each other.
And who better to conjure up
than the person that she believes could make that happen?
Jax, there's a custody battle brewing
with Charlotte Cassadine.
If this change in tactics kicks up dirt
that can be used against Valentin,
I sure would like to relay that to Lulu and Laura.
Oh, I'm fine with that.
The more trouble for Valentin, the better, right?
All right, what you got?
Well, at this point, just a name.
Charlotte was carried by a surrogate --
I want you to find her.
I really don't need this, do I?
I know that you're not gonna hurt me.
Not as long as I know where that codicil is.
What do you want?
Well, you could start by thanking me.
Instead of burning the codicil along with the portrait
or handing it over to Valentin --
Valentin is a bit of a bastard, isn't he?
But, then, so are you.
Spencer is a different story.
And since it turns out that he has a right
to the Cassadine fortune,
I'd like him to get it.
Is the codicil here?
Can you give it to me now?
Do you really think
that I'm gonna make it that easy?
There are terms to be met.
Valentin: There's one thing that I'm not getting.
She insists that this bodyguard is real.
I don't know why.
All I know is that she needs you now more than ever --
just like I do.
[ Sighs ]
Why don't you go check on her?
You know, you and Lulu got pretty heated.
Just to make sure she didn't overhear anything.
Come with me.
Uh, I will.
I-I just have a phone call to make,
and then I'll be right up, okay?