07/07/1999 Erica Casts The Deciding Vote

"Dixie's nonchalant attitude regarding her pregnancy greatly troubled Tad. He asked his wife what would happen to her loved ones if things took a turn for the worse. "You'll survive," she snapped. She reminded Tad that ultimately it was her decision to make. Tad concurred, but said that Dixie could not expect him to not have an opinion on the matter. Tad suggested that Dixie speak to David and ask him for his professional advice about her pregnancy. Dixie shrugged indifferently and commented that David cared only about her heart and not her baby. "He's a slimeball," muttered Jake. Tad turned towards his younger brother and asked him to keep his comments about David to himself. The two Martin boys argued back and forth about whether or not is was wise to involved David. Joe finally spoke up and ordered his sons to be quiet. "The decision is yours," Joe told Dixie. "But the problem belongs to all of us." Dixie cocked her head to one side and asked Joe about his experience with similar situations. Joe misunderstood and thought Dixie was asking for his professional experience with dangerous pregnancies. In actuality, Dixie was referring to Joe's personal life. Ruth, Dixie noted, had been in a nearly identical predicament. She'd gotten pregnant with Jake very late in life and the doctors had advised her to end her pregnancy. Joe argued that this was not a case of similarities. In Ruth's case, her health was not at risk. There had, however, been a high probability that Jake could have been born with severe birth defects. Dixie asked Joe how he'd feel now if he and Ruth had opted to end the pregnancy. Joe refused to offer an answer, saying that this was Dixie and Tad's decision to make without any outside interference. Jake and Joe left the room. Outside in the corridor, Jake thanked his father for bucking the medical advice of the time and allowing him to come into the world. As grateful as he was, Jake said that he felt Dixie had to end the pregnancy. Back inside the office, Tad pledged that he would go along with whatever Dixie decided to do---but he again urged her to consult with David. Dixie threw her hands in the air and grumbled that there must be women with one kidney who've safely delivered healthy babies. Tad was intrigued by the idea and asked Dixie to accompany him to his office at WRCW so that they could do a little research. He figured that after the data was analyzed it might give Dixie something to think about. Dixie went to the station with her husband, but she remembered that the boys were only going to be at camp for a half-day and had to run home to wait for them.

"Gillian, you're crying," Ryan observed. Gillian wiped the tears from her eyes and sadly told Ryan that she'd lost one of her patients. Ryan took Gillian in his arms and tried to comfort her. As he did, Jake passed by the sun porch and observed the embrace. He frowned unhappily and stormed away. Gillian told Ryan that it was not fair of him to drop by unannounced at her place of employment. She realized that she does the same to Ryan and quickly claimed that her visits to SOS "can't be helped." Ryan told his former wife that it pained him to see her unhappy. He admitted that he still cares deeply for her and also confessed that he's hurt to see Gillian and Jake together. Gillian was perplexed; Ryan had previously told her that he was glad that she and Jake were friends. "I am," Ryan said unconvincingly "But it still hurts." Gillian ran her hand through her hair and told Ryan that he was all she'd ever wanted. She told him that she'd never wanted a divorce, her voice sizzling with anger. "It doesn't make sense to throw away something so beautiful," Gillian snapped. Ryan claimed that he'd asked for the divorce because he knew that he could never make Gillian happy. Seemingly out of nowhere, Gillian told Ryan that he should be glad that he has a friend like Hayley to be there for him. It was as if Ryan had run into a wall. He called Hayley his "best friend" and said that he loves her---but only as a friend. "Liar!" the princess screamed. "I saw you on the beach! I saw you kiss her!" Ryan told Gillian that she'd misunderstood the kiss. There was no way to misinterpret a "passionate, earth-shattering kiss," Gillian remarked. "You're the only woman I've ever loved," Ryan told Gillian tenderly. "You love me once," Gillian sighed, hinting at a level of finality that she's never been able to admit to. Ryan started to explain his version of the kiss. He said that he and Hayley were both "confused" and that the kiss was "a mistake." Gillian didn't it. She now believed that she'd been right all along when she believed that Ryan and Hayley were romantically interested in one another. Ryan might have been able to convince Hayley that the kiss was a mistake if it weren't for one fatal slip. He accidentally let it slip that he knew that Gillian had caught him and Hayley in the act. Up until this point, Ryan led Gillian to believe that she'd surprised him by telling him that she'd observed the kiss. Now that she knew that this was not the case, Gillian figured out that Ryan simply wanted her to keep her mouth shut about the kiss. Gillian raised her hand and slapped Ryan's cheek. She was crushed because in her mind she'd been misled. She thought that Ryan had come there to tell her that he really cared about her. But now she realized that he only wanted to ask her to keep quiet to protect Hayley, the woman she believes he really loves. Gillian raced out of the solarium and headed directly for Jake's office.

Palmer greeted Erica and told her to cast her vote. "Are you completely self-centered?" Opal said critically. She looked at Erica with a proud smile and noted that for the first time in months Erica was not wearing a mask. Erica beamed ecstatically, obviously elated that someone had noticed. Erica told Opal that her surgery was a complete success and that after a few more weeks she'd be good as new. In the meantime, Erica said that she was wearing "therapeutic makeup" to cover the slight bruising. Palmer felt a bit oafish for not noticing and quickly took up a spot by Erica's side. Erica and Opal gabbed about the good ole days briefly. Opal told Erica that she'd been praying for Erica's complete recovery for a long time. Erica pulled away and reminded Opal that there was a vote underway. "I'm glad someone's remembered," groused Reginald Hightower. Opal thanked Erica for being her best friend and told her to drop by the new Glamorama for a free day of relaxation. Across the room, Adrian and Belinda smiled as the two women continued to bond. Palmer warned the couple not to be too smug because Erica hadn't cast her vote yet. "You, my friend, are going down for the count," Adrian sneered. Erica walked over to Adrian and praised his ingenious ideas. She said that his ideas were what Cortlandt Electronics needed to move into the next millennium. Opal approached Palmer and asked him if he was ready to concede defeat. Palmer asked Opal what it would take to call off the vote. "You're not a cruel woman," he said. "I wasn't until you made me one," Opal replied snidely. Opal called for everyone to come to order and prepare for the second vote. Adrian whispered proper jargon into his mother's ear. Palmer quickly pulled Adrian aside and offered him a compromise. He told the former spy that he'd take him on as his second in command if he agreed to drop his takeover bid. Included in the deal was a promise to make Adrian the CEO when he retired. "I wasn't born yesterday," Adrian snapped as he rejected the offer. Erica rose to her feet and prepared to announce her decision. Erica talked over her "strong affection" for Cortlandt Electronics and of the close ties the company has to the Pine Valley community. The economy in the small town, she noted, depends greatly on the Cortlandt Electronics. So when the stock started to slide, naturally Erica was concerned that the entire community could be adversely affected. She turned towards Adrian and again praised his thoughtful innovations as a way to rescue the struggling company. But to oust the man whose name was synonymous with Cortlandt Electronics would cause a "crisis in confidence," she concluded. Opal's face fell as Erica announced that she had to cast her vote for the current CEO, Palmer. The room erupted into applause and Palmer smiled victoriously. Opal, meanwhile, sat frozen in her chair. Erica was faced with a difficult situation. She was happy that she'd done what she saw as the right thing for the company, but she was aching because she had to cast her vote against her closest friend. Palmer thanked Erica and told her that he owes her everything. Erica nodded in agreements. Erica walked over to Opal and tried to explain why she voted the way she had. She asked Opal to join her for a cup of coffee, but Opal refused. "A cup of joe? That's my consolation?" she asked in shock. Erica told Opal that she'd always be there for her and asked her to call her. In the corner, Belinda tried to help Adrian accept his defeat. Adrian, however, would do no such thing. "This is hardly over," he growled. Reginald smiled devilishly and asked Palmer if he'd be celebrating his win with Vanessa Bennett. Everyone filed out of the room except for Opal, who remained motionless in her chair. A few seconds later, Palmer returned to retrieve his briefcase. When he did, Opal looked up and cast him an icy glare."

- Soap Central