Emma and Lucinda scheme to get their children together, the Snyders celebrate the holiday and Noah comes for a visit.
At Lily’s, she cleans up after the gifts have been unwrapped. The children sit around looking bored and dejected. Faith wants to call Holden but her mother dissuades her. Luke sits around looking miserable and pines for Noah. When Lucinda arrives, Damian’s goons are standing guard outside and won’t let her in. Her daughter backs them off. Lucinda takes a dig at her daughter over the fact that Damian isn’t even around. She runs off to get a gift she left in the car.
At the farm house, Emma is busy working on the Christmas meal. Holden comes in after cutting up wood. After she sends Holden out to get some elderberry wine, Lucinda arrives and announces that it is up to them to save Christmas. If they don’t step in to help their miserable children, no one will. Emma is reluctant; she thinks that Lily and Holden have hurt each other too much and it’s time to let go. Lucinda refuses to back down and argues that they owe their children and grandchildren some nice memories. Emma gives in. They scheme.
Holden is outside calling Molly. They admit how much they are missing each other. When he goes back inside, Lucinda bustles away and Emma cries out. She claims that she just burned the goose and says that they will have to order take-out from Al’s. He’s shocked.
Outside of Lily’s, Lucinda calls her daughter and tells her a story about her car breaking down. She asks her to pick her up at Al’s. As soon as Lily leaves, Lucinda slips inside.
Holden and Lily bump into each other at Al’s, He wonders why she isn’t with Damian. She explains that he’s busying searching for Meg. They quickly realize that their mothers set them up to meet like this. “What are we going to do about it?” he asks. They talk about their kids. He hopes she took lots of pictures of them unwrapping their gifts. She admits that everything seems to be going wrong no matter how hard she’s tried to make everything perfect. He tells her that it will take time for everyone to adjust to things and points out that the children manage to figure out a lot more than they actually tell them. She decides that their mothers are actually right. “We need to get over ourselves,” she says.
Lucinda smuggles the children into the farm house. Emma greets them and they put their presents under the tree. Emma and Lucinda admit to Luke that they plotted all of this. He doubts their plan will work. Holden and Lily arrive. Emma apologizes for lying to him. Lucinda’s not sorry, however. They ask Lily to stay for dinner and all decide to make sure that the children have a good holiday.
Luke and Holden go outside to gather fire wood. Holden tells him that being alone for the holidays sucks, but Noah will be back. Luke worries about how upset Natalie has been; she’s worried that they haven’t taken their Christmas picture yet.
In the house, Natalia and Emma look at a photo album. They talk about Brad and Natalie explains that Ethan is upset because someone told him that there was no real Santa.
Lily offers to have an ‘all girl’s day’ with Faith. She doesn’t think that would be fair for her siblings. Faith tells her mother that nothing has been good since Holden left.
In the kitchen, Holden, Emma and Lily gather to talk about everything the children are upset about. Lucinda comes in after discovering a letter and explains that Faith has applied to boarding school behind their backs... and she was accepted. They bring Faith in and confront her about this. She says that things have changed too much and she can’t stay. She’s actually enthusiastic about going off to school because she wants to pursue her writing. After she walks out on them, Lily follows her into the living room and asks her if she really wants to leave because of Damian. She admits that, at first, that was the reason, but now she genuinely wants to go for her writing. Holden comes in dressed as Santa. Ethan brings him cookies. Holden laughs and assures him that he is, indeed, the real Santa. As he hands him a gift, however, Luke walks in dressed as Santa. After an awkward moment, Luke claims that he is Santa’s brother. Ethan pulls off his beard and laughs.
The family joins together for the Christmas picture. As they pose, Lucinda leads Noah in. Luke stares and wonders why he wasn’t told about this. Lucinda explains that she wasn’t going to let them be apart for the holidays. The family welcomes him, but when Luke gets close, Noah backs away. As most of the family file off, Emma shows Holden and Lily something which Faith wrote. She thought it was so wonderful that she had her make her a copy. Emma leaves them to read it. It’s about ‘perfect families’ and how Faith never had one. Her parents' lives are always full of drama; they are always breaking up, even though they are obviously soul mates. Lily weeps as she reads it. They bring Faith in and tell her how proud they are of her maturity. They are willing to support her, they just want to make sure that boarding school is really what she wants. It is, so they agree.
Noah and Luke sit at the kitchen table. Luke asks him what his presence means. Noah doesn’t know. They may have been through tough times before, but he could always see that there would be an end to them. Now, that’s all over and everything has changed. Luke still wants them to spend their lives togther. Noah can’t tell him what he wants to hear but he admits that he came because he would have missed spending Christmas with him. Luke is okay with that. They hug.
Emma calls everyone together for the family picture... even Lucinda. Afterwards, they give her an ornament to hang on the tree. Everyone hangs their ornaments, one at a time. Since Lily’s is nowhere to be found, Holden offers to let her hang his with him. After they do, Molly comes in bearing gifts. Holden is happy to see her. Lily looks on jealously as he hugs her. She announces that she has to leave now because Damian will be home. Lucinda takes Emma aside to tell her that there is still more work to be done. Holden walks Lily and her mother out and watches them leaving through the window.
Luke gives Noah a box full of various things. Each thing represents one of his senses. “That’s great. Aren’t people supposed to have five senses? I can’t live the rest of my life like this,” Noah tells him.
In the living room, Holden welcomes Molly ‘home’.
When Lily and her mother get to her place, she looks at the family picture. In it, she and Holden are looking at each other smiling.
Next on As The World Turns:
Janet and Dusty kiss.
Jack tells Parker that Carly is with Craig.
Carly and Craig veer off the road.
Alison says ‘yes’ to Casey.
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