Ridge is declared not guilty after Rick's testimony. Stephanie begins to worry about Brooke's involvement with Ridge.
The judge calls the court to order as the DA objects to the just-arrived Rick being allowed to testify. Christine argues that he has come and should be heard out. The judge rules that some leeway should be given, and allows Rick to take the stand. Christine asks Rick what he remembers about Grant Chambers. He replies that he hated him; resented him. "When did you remember shooting him?" she asks. Rick tells her that this morning after talking to both Phoebe and his mother about the issue, he took some time to himself and while alone it all came back. He claims there were vivid images, flashes, so clear, so real... "I can see Grant Chambers at his desk", Rick intones, "I hated him, he was ruining my life; I had a gun in my hand, but no idea where I got it from, I raised it..." "You fired it?" asks Christine. "Yes - it was the loudest sound I had ever heard, I was so scared, I just looked at Grant, slumped over his desk. I couldn't breathe, couldn't move..." "Your witness," Christine says triumphantly to the DA.
The DA begins to question Rick. "So, it was Ridge who told you that you had killed Grant - after he was arrested for killing Shane?" she asks. "Yes." Rick answers. She asks Rick to confirm the "close" relationships between himself & Phoebe, his mother & Ridge, himself & his mother, his mother & Phoebe, and Phoebe & her dad. When he does confirm they are all close relationships, the DA goes in for the kill - "So, given these relationship, would it be fair to say you'd do just about anything for Ridge Forrester?" "No," Rick replies, to her surprise, "I despise the man. He took the blame for killing Grant for my mother's sake, I don't owe him a damn thing." The judge steps in and decides that in light of Rick's testimony he will rule not to allow Ridge's prior conviction into the proceedings. Christine appeals to the judge to realize that Ridge only concealed his involvement in Shane's death because he was scared due to the previous judge's warning that he must never have another criminal conviction involving a firearm. She asks the judge to listen to Ridge's testimony and decide for himself. The judge asks if she is requesting a bench trial now. She says she is - the DA accepts the proposal and Ridge takes the stand.
Christine approaches the stand and asks,"Did the struggle end after the gun went off?" Ridge replies, "I didn't know if either one of us had been shot, Shane had a wild look in his eye, we both sank slowly to our knees and when I let go he fell backward - I'm pretty sure he died instantly." The DA declines to question Ridge. Christine moves for a direct verdict of "Not Guilty" on the murder charge. The judge tells Ridge that he is guilty of making some very bad decisions and upholds the obstruction of justice charge. He tells him on the charge of murder, however, he is not guilty. He then pronounces Ridge "free to go". The Forresters surround a joyous Ridge to give quick congratulations. A triumphant Brooke embraces Ridge.
As everyone clears out of the courtroom, Stephanie stops Taylor and invites her back to the house. She accepts and leaves. Now, Stephanie is alone in the courtroom with Ridge. They embrace as Ridge thanks her for her continual faith in him. She tells him that every night he spent in jail was agony for her, but that she know this moment would come. "You're free!" she repeats over and over as they hug again.
Back at the jail, Christine accompanies Ridge to sign for his belongings and to get released. Christine excuses herself for a moment, just as Rick enters the room. Ridge asks Rick, "How can I ever thank you?" Rick spits, "For what?" Ridge, taken aback, replies, "For coming forward, you remembered." "No," hisses Rick, "I didn't remember a damn thing!" A surprised Ridge asks, "So it was all an act!" Rick informs him that he did it for Phoebe, and wants to know if Ridge now realizes how much Rick cares for her. Rick asks Ridge if he is now going to give he and Phoebe a chance. Ridge considers, then tells him, "Alright, but on one condition, you respect her, don't let her down, if I catch you with someone else or you hurt her, you will answer to me..." Christine re-enters the room and Rick leaves. Behind Christine is a smiling Brooke come to take Ridge home.
Back at the Forrester mansion, Thorne and Felicia and the rest of the family celebrate the verdict. Stephanie wanders into the room where Eric sits alone with a thoughtful look on his face. "I guess everyone isn't happy," she comments. Eric says he's just worried about Rick - he's been through so much. He raises the idea of getting a gag order in light of the new circumstances. "Let's just be happy," interjects Stephanie. "As opposed to focussing on your part in all this?" asks Eric snidely. "I hope you've learned a lesson?" he adds. Stephanie ignores him and says, "It's just that now we may have a new problem to deal with - Brooke."
At the jail, Ridge thanks Brooke for making the effort with Rick, otherwise, he says, we might be saying goodbye right now. She giggles and says, "You know me when I get determined. Seriously though, Ridge, you are a kind and decent man, I haven't forgotten..."
The celebration continues at the Forresters', where Eric raises a toast to Christine Blair and her success with Ridge's case. Christine jokingly tells him to remember that when she comes looking for a fabulous outfit! Stephanie tells Eric that Rick has arrived, but is outside. He'll need our support, Eric declares. Outside, Rick is telling Phoebe what transpired between he and Ridge at the jail, and that Ridge has agreed not to get in their way any longer. A thrilled Phoebe tells Rick he is her hero. They share a deep kiss. Phoebe then continues praising Rick for "saving my dad", and says "Thank God you remembered!" Rick embraces her, but looks unsettled.
Inside, Stephanie is upset that Ridge is with Brooke. Eric tells her to leave them alone, but Stephanie refuses to listen. She rails about Brooke's recent behavior and claims that she is only interested in Ridge because Nick is no longer available. Stephanie ominously declares that she will stop Brooke!
Readying to leave the jail, Brooke tells Ridge that the blessing in all of this is that Ridge & Rick's relationship has now come full circle. "Just like ours," she muses, smiling. "I'm sorry it took almost losing you for me to remember what a good man you are." she whispers. In reply Ridge apologizes for what happened between he and Rick, and tells Brooke that he will never hit her son again. She accepts his apology and smiling, reminds Ridge that now he has his future ahead of him to keep that promise. They happily embrace...