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Recap: The Party - Season 7 - Episode 1

Cassie and Sam's much overdue date doesn't go as planned and they end up stranded on an island. Joy dreams about her parents. Stars Catherine Bell and James Denton.
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Joy dreams of being a child and spending a day at the beach with her mom and dad. Her melodic humming as a little girl scores the tender moment as she creates a symbol with stones on the sand. Her father approaches with a seashell bearing what looks to be a “J.” Joy wakes up from the dream, not sure what to make of it or the satchel of dirt by her bedside.

In the Grey House kitchen that morning, Cassie wonders if Joy had good dreams. Joy surprisingly says no. She wonders if Cassie ever learned where the satchels of dirt they, along with Abigail, received came from a few months back. Cassie says that Merriwick mystery is still unsolved. Just then Cassie’s brother Vincent arrives for a surprise visit, though it seems Cassie knew he was due to arrive and demands her hug.

Abigail is ready for a run, however, Dotty corners her to go over details for Abigail and Donovan’s engagement party of the century. Donovan arrives in time to get an earful on picking a wedding date. Before Donovan and Abigail head off, Dotty surprises Donovan with news: his brother Daniel is coming to town for the party. Dotty is ecstatic while Donovan unsuccessfully tries to hide his dismay.

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As Sam rushes off to surgery Cassie tells him how much she misses seeing his face. They need a date night. Sam says “done,” as Cassie walks him out the door for work.

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After a jog, Abigail asks Donovan what the deal is between him and Daniel. Donovan is very worked up just by the mention of his name. Daniel is the golden boy and everything is a competition with him. Abigail changes the subject to picking a wedding date. Much to her relief, they both agree on having a long engagement. Dotty will have to wait for a wedding date.

Back at Grey House, George heads off for a fishing trip as Joy arrives with a gift for Cassie. It’s a photo frame made of Vermont Maplewood. Cassie has the perfect photo for the frame, one of her parents that is currently on the fridge. Vincent enters and looks at the photo, commenting on how much Cassie looks like her mom. It gets him thinking about his own mom. After years of talking about it, he has hired a private investigator to find her. Joy is not sure she will ever get around to looking for her dad. Joy hopes Vincent finds what he is looking for as Cassie hopes both do.

Grandmama to-be Martha welcomes her pregnant daughter-in-law Claire at the Tinsdale Manor. Claire promises not to be too much trouble but that seems unlikely as Tom enters with a large load of luggage. Later, Martha and Tom find it hard to please Claire as their sandwiches and relaxing scents do not create a soothing sanctuary for mom and baby.

Adam returns from his time away and finds Stephanie at the Bistro. The moment is awkward when Stephanie goes for a handshake as Adam goes for a hug. Later, over coffee Adam shows Stephanie talk. He shows her an Incan bracelet, gifted to him by the children at the village. As Stephanie leans in to check it out, she also goes for a kiss, but Adam pulls back. She correctly guesses that Adam has met someone else.

Abigail and Donovan are enjoying lunch at his office when they get interrupted by none other than Daniel. He is happy to meet Abigail with a hug. However, Daniel is not alone. Quinn enters and realizes Daniel has not told Donovan everything. He and Quinn are dating. Abigail senses tension and asks to get filled in on why this is awkward. She gets the answer. Donovan and Quinn dated in high school.

At the hospital, Adam runs into Cassie while waiting to catch up with Sam. He admits to feeling conflicted. He really likes a new woman he met, Eileen, with whom he is going on another mission trip next week. However, he still has feelings for Stephanie. He is afraid of making the wrong choice by staying or going. Cassie asks what he has to lose by going, saying, “Fear is temporary.” Adam finishes the saying, “Regret is forever.”

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Joy senses Stephanie is upset with herself over the situation with Adam. He traveled the world and met someone while she just made the same coffee she has been making for the last 15 years. Joy suggests they get together and create vision boards for inspiration. As Joy leaves, Abigail arrives and Stephanie fills her in on Quinn and Donovan’s legendary high school romance. The couple was voted most likely to stay together forever and their love was apparently the talk of two towns.

Meanwhile, Cassie has a gift to help Martha and Tom with their new house guest: a bell. The soothing ting will help as they care for Claire and their tiny Tinsdale on the way.

Vincent shows Sam his boat, The Night in Sail. Sam enjoys spending time on the boat with Vincent, saying “this is the life.” Vincent corrects him saying it’s Sam who has it all with his wife and kids. Sam assures him the right woman is out there for him and he’ll make a great dad someday. Sam wishes he could spend more time with Cassie. Every time one of them is free the other is working. Vincent offers Sam the boat to take Cassie for a romantic day at sea. They can’t be passing ships if they are on the same boat.

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Back at Grey House, Cassie, Abigail, and Dotty review last-minute details for the party. Dotty picks up the purple satchel of dirt thinking it is a party favor. Cassie reminds her about the cake in the car and Dotty quickly leaves to retrieve it. Cassie and Abigail have a moment alone and Cassie suggests Abigail tell Dotty she wants a long engagement instead of waiting for Donovan to do it. Joy arrives and notices Cassie and Abigail chatting and holding the satchel of dirt. Joy agrees, she is usually pretty intuitive but she has gotten anything from the bags. Dotty enters with the cake. Cassie and Joy take the cake in the kitchen, leaving Dotty and Abigail to chat about Daniel. Dotty wonders what Abigail thinks of him She is also sorry she had to meet Quinn under these circumstances. However, she assures Abigail has nothing to worry about. Dotty always knew Donovan and Quinn would never get married. Abigail is surprised to learn Donovan and Quinn even thought about marriage.

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Abigail confronts Donovan about his past with Quinn, being the “it” couple in high school and even talking about marriage. She is concerned that Donovan did not mention it and wonders when he will tell Dotty they want a long engagement. Donovan promises to tell her soon.

Meanwhile, at the Bistro, Stephanie is already in better spirits as she and Joy drink wine and make their vision boards. Stephanie notices an owl on Joy’s board. She explains it is because they are having a hoot. Stephanie laughs saying Joy may have had enough spirits. Joy next places an image of an eclipse, an image that spoke to her. Stephanie wishes she would have talked herself out of dating Adam. She is stalled in what to put on her board and realizes her story started with the Bistro and it could be greater with a redesign. Joy is definitely her girl if she is looking for something greater. Stephanie confirms, “You’re hired.”

Sam and Cassie enjoy a day on The Night in Sail. Cassie takes the helm and relishes making up for lost time together. However, they’ve just run out of time as the boat stalls. All is not lost as they are able to enjoy a nice picnic on a nearby island. Suddenly, Cassie hears a child’s humming. It sounds exactly like the young Joy humming in the dream. The sound pulls Cassie and Sam to a symbol in stones on the beach. It’s the symbol from Joy’s dream.

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The next morning Vincent learns his birth mother has been found and lives nearby.

Later at the engagement party, Donovan and Abigail thank everyone for coming. Daniel encourages them to kiss. Abigail and Donovan are about to oblige when thunder rumbles, signaling rain. Everyone gathers an item and heads inside before the rain starts. Alone on the patio Donovan and Abigail try again for a kiss. As their lips lock, the thunder roars again.

Inside, Adam and Stephanie talk, agreeing they do not want things to be awkward between them. Stephanie says they just need time, however, Adam has decided to leave on another mission. He apologies but Stephanie assures he does not have anything to be sorry about.

Abigail and Quinn catch up at the party. They find it easy to talk despite how things unfolded earlier. Quinn admits she is leaving Daniel and heading back to D.C. Nearby Dotty is bursting at the seams to tell Abigail and Donovan about their engagement gift. Unable to hold it in she announces she got them the Picasso of wedding planners. Abigail uses the moment to prompt Donovan to tell Dotty they want a long engagement. Donovan avoids doing so, much to her dismay.

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Dotty and Cassie give a toast to Donovan and Abigail. Cassie congratulates them on being perfect for each other. Speaking of perfect, Dotty thinks it’s the perfect moment to announce a wedding date. As Donovan comes clean on their decision to wait on a date, his brother Daniel chides him asking if there is trouble in paradise. Upset Donovan abruptly steps out to get fresh air.

Back at home, Martha and Tom are on edge. Claire has driven them crazy with the bell. As they take a moment to strategize what to do with her over streusel, they find a sweet surprise. Claire has left a note and tiramisu as a heartfelt thank you for making her feel at home. Just as they sit down to have dessert, they hear Claire’s bell ring, prompting Martha to shout, “Good gravy!”

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Later that night Cassie, Abigail, and Joy come together in the Grey House kitchen to examine the satchels of dirt. They pour them out and it makes a familiar shape. It is the symbol in the sand from Joy’s dream and the deserted island Cassie got stranded on with Sam. Suddenly, George appears saying, “We need to talk.”