Grace runs into Bev, Quentin’s girlfriend’s mother, at the pharmacy. Bev tells her she’s feeling suffocated in her marriage; being rich isn’t that great. Grace has a hard time relating to Bev’s problems.
Grace stops by the pharmacy while Quentin’s working at the soda fountain. Quentin’s girlfriend Laurie is there, and Grace meets her for the first time.
At the construction site, Grace feels the resentment of her co-worker, Derrick, who wanted the job Grace has. Grace, who has asked D.C. for more responsibilities, is surprised when her old pal Vic shows up and says he’s desperate for a job.
Wade shows up with Dan Gabriel, his old commanding officer in Vietnam, who’s now a covert operations/demolition expert. Dan and Grace begin a verbal sparring match almost immediately.
When D.C. and Grace have a meeting in a motel with an equipment supplier, gossip that they’re having an affair flies around Victory.
Grace buys some new clothes for the first time in years and the next day learns that her paycheck will be late because D.C. is having trouble getting his payroll money from the government.
Libby visits the bridge construction site on a field trip and discovers that the Victory Tree that holds a significant place in the town’s history is to be cut down.
D.C. has a chance to bid on a hotel job for one of the biggest developers in the Midwest. Grace tells him he’s going to have to make an extra effort to schmooze the guy and make him feel at ease, even though it isn’t D.C.’s style.
Libby wants to go to Washington on a class trip, but Grace can’t afford to send her. A tornado has hit Victory and there has been much destruction.
Jean is upset, complaining that the new bridge will cut off Emmet's (grave) view of the river, so Grace suggests that she move the grave site.
Louise, Grace’s mom, arrives for the holidays, surprising everyone. Louise has definite ideas about how little girls are to be brought up and she disapproves of Libby’s tomboy behavior. Her mission is to turn Libby into a demure young lady.
Wade’s back from Colorado and tells Grace that he and Nadine are splitting up. He also tells her he’s heard that some kids were partying down by the quarry, and it’s possible Quentin may have been there.
Grace is in search of a job and Libby is worried that they’re going to be poor again.
Grace arrives home very late from her job in St. Louis and finds the kids still up, the house in disarray, Jean asleep on the sofa and Libby cleaning the kitchen.
To Grace's amazement, she lands a job with an ad agency in Victory, but she's soon frustrated by the regimentation and lack of creativity.
Rob tells Grace he'd really like their relationship to go to a deeper level; they have plans to go to New Orleans the weekend of Grace's birthday, but when Rob finds out the kids are planning a surprise party for her, he suggests they postpone the trip.
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