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Days:Stefano blackmails EJ

Stefano tells EJ just what it will take for him to keep mum about his son's role in Sydney's kidnapping. "Stefano is blackmailing him," says James Scott (EJ). "He says, 'You have to move your kids in here. I want Johnny and Sydney back in this house within the hour.' And EJ hasn't gotten around to telling his father that he's in love with Samantha, so it's a little tough. Stefano thinks EJ hates her still, so to him, it's a perfectly reasonable request."

EJ returns to Sami's townhouse and breaks the news about his "change of heart" regarding his father. Since Sami was worried that the Phoenix would suck Elvis back into his web, EJ has to do some quick thinking in order to explain his 180. "EJ tells Samantha that Stefano is dying," previews Scott. Though Sami is reluctant, she lets EJ bring the children to see their grandfather.

And, with EJ ensconced chez DiMera, he has a better shot of keeping the real truth from Sami about Sydney's abduction. "It's a catch-22," observes Scott. "Stefano tends to be a little bit better at keeping secrets, so that at least means it probably won't come out for a while. I'm hoping it wont' come out for a long time, and EJ is hoping he can keep the secret and she won't find out."

From Sami's perspective, she has no reason to doubt him. "Everything she's seen of him is that he's a stand-up guy and a great father," notes portrayer Alison Sweeney. "To her inner self, she obviously feels the connection between them and he has certainly given her a few subtle looks and moments where she has felt, 'Oh God, there is something still there,' but I think to anyone else she would deny it, mostly to herself. She's trying to pretend that that's not a part of the equation and he's just a friend and a father to her kids."

But by week's end Stefano is clued into the fact that EJ is still carrying a torch for Sami. "The sad thing is that in having this secret and in recognizing that he loves her, it's going to be really nice and he will really regret what he's done,' says Scott. "[The realization] truly represents his feelings for her in an honest, wholesome way that would otherwise be very admirable."

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SOD: Stefano Blackmails EJ · DAYS: News, Spoilers & Discussion