In Santa Barbara, California, the thrilling and animated life of the rich Capwells, around who gravitate various families from the Lockridges, the rival family, to the Andrades or the Perkins, more modest families but whose destinies know the same torments...
It is on July 30 1984 that goes out of prison Joe Perkins, judged guilty of the murder of Channing Capwell Junior five years ago, crime for which he always cried out his innocence. He looks now for rehabilitation and especially the true murderer, while trying to reconquer Kelly Capwell, his former love, now fiancée to Peter Flint. Joe's return also divides his family, her father John always believing him guilty. During this time, Sophia Capwell, Channing Junior's mother and ex-wife of the family patriarch, C.C., is back to Santa Barbara, disguised as a man, Dominic. Everyone believes her dead, drowned years ago, following an accident on the yacht of Lionel Lockridge, her lover.
Santana Andrade, on her side, turns to be the mother of Brandon, the child of Channing Junior with who she had an affair before his death. C.C. forced her to give him up and made him being adopted by an old friend, Stockman DeMott and his wife, Gina. Santana is now determined to recover her son. She asks for help Mason Capwell, the elder son of C.C. and his first wife, Pamela. Santana's parents are employees of the Capwells for years, Rosa Andrade is the housekeeper and Ruben, the gardener.
The Capwells and the Lockridges are, in more of being direct neighbours, enemies for generations. The tension increases again more when Augusta and Lionel Lockridge's daughter, Laken, begins a love affair with Ted Capwell, the youngest child of the family. Other couples get also constituted between the sea rescuer Warren Lockridge and Summer Blake, Gina's sister, or Danny Andrade, Santana's brother, and Jade Perkins, Joe's littlesister, whose dream is to make career in Hollywood.
It is little of time after the return in town of Eden Capwell, Kelly and Ted's sister, that occurs a big earthquake which shakes the town and costs life to John Perkins.
Joe succeeds in convincing Kelly of his innocence and ends up marrying her. Mad of rage, Peter Flint loses the reason and becomes the carnation killer : he murders fair women whom he takes for Kelly, of which in particular Summer Blake and his secretary, Veronica Gayley. He finally kills Joe after his wedding and is shot by the police officer Cruz Castillo.
It is discovered that Sophia is finally alive, but her arrival at the Capwells is rather distant. She is accompanied by her son-in-law, Marcello Armonti, who accuses C.C. to be responsible for the death of his parents during the Second World War. For his part, C.C. marries Gina to keep near him his grandson Brandon. Gina, in order to offer a descent to C.C., has an adventure with Mason !
Cruz, convinced of the innocence of his friend Joe even after his death, continues to investigate on the death of Channing Junior. He organizes a reconstitution of the famous evening in C.C.'s office, where Sophia suddenly remembers to have shot at her son ! She thought in fact that it was Lionel and that the revolver was empty, but C.C. had just charged it.
Amy Perkins, Joe and Jade's sister, gives birth to a boy, immediately kidnapped by her doctor, Dr. Renfro. This last one works in fact for the cousin and perfect double of Jack Lee, Jerry Cooper. Jerry kidnapped Jack and took his place as the lawyer of C.C. and the lover of Julia Wainwright, Augusta's sister, recently arrived in town. Julia, Amy, and her boyfriend Brick Wallace join New Stailand island to release Jack and little Johnny, prisoner of the king of the island who turns to be his grandfather.
On his side, Ted is harassed by Christie DuVall who wants him to break with Laken. Christie is thereafter raped by her step-brother, Steve Bassett, who forces her to accuse Ted of the rape. Steve, assistant of the district attorney, arrests Ted. Christie finally innocents him and kills Steve by accident. Christie's sister, Sister Mary, arrives in Santa Barbara and Mason falls in love with her.
Kelly falls in love with the photographer Nick Hartley, a Vietnam veteran. His brother Dylan joins him, in search of a treasure, pursued by a trafficker named Carlo Alvarez.
The wedding ceremony of Eden and Cruz is stopped by a fire at the Capwell hotel. A second drama follows a few times later, with the cave-in of the tunnel connecting the Capwell and Lockridge mansions. Augusta Lockridge, who goes out of there blind, breaks with Lionel and has an affair with another man. She finally recovers the sight and returns with her husband.
C.C., with the help of Santana, surprises Mason in bed with Gina. To be avenged, this last one reveals to his father that Channing Junior was gay and that he was actually the fruit of the love affair between Sophia and Lionel ! This double shock makes C.C. falling in coma for many weeks. Gina, discovering that C.C. wanted to divorce and thus to disinherit her, pulls the plug on his life support system, while letting Eden think that she is the author of this act. However, C.C. survives and Eden breaks with Cruz, who believes her guilty, for Kirk Cranston, an employee of the Capwell Enterprises.
Eden, feeling indebted towards Kirk to have supported her, accepts to marry him. C.C. wakes up from his coma and divorces Gina. He promises to Santana the guard of Brandon if she gets married and financially stabilized. Cruz, who knows Santana since college and knows how much Brandon counts for her, proposes to marry her and Brandon is given to Santana. But so that this last one is recognized as being a bad mother, Gina replaces Santana's pills for her allergies by drug. Become dependent, she is forced to enter a detoxication center.
When Kirk discovers that it is Gina who tried to kill C.C., he sends to Eden anonymous letters so that she continues to think that she is well responsible. Eden ends however having doubts about Kirk, and this one then blackmails Gina so that she kills her. After a fight at the boathouse, Gina is left for dead, drowned. When finally Eden and Cruz return to each other, Kirk tries to kill them, but Gina reappears and prevents him to succeed. Kirk is finally arrested.
At this point in time Victoria Lane, an old friend of Cruz, arrives in town, with an unavowed purpose to recover him. Keith Timmons becomes the new district attorney and accuses Victoria and Cruz of the drowning of his sister Katie a few years before.
Mary leaves the convent and falls in love with Mason. But her former love, Dr. Mark McCormick, is seriously wounded during an explosion orchestrated by Kirk to kill Eden and Cruz. Thinking that he is dying, Mary accepts to marry him. However, Mark recovers from his wounds and rapes Mary. A few time later, Mary is killed by the fall of the "C" of the Capwell hotel ensign, whereas she was pregnant of Mason.
Kelly, fiancée to Nick, sleeps with Dylan in a moment of weakness, during a business trip. She breaks with Nick in front of the altar and avowes to him her affair with his brother. But he forgives her, what makes Dylan mad of jealousy. He attacks Kelly with a gun at the presidential suite of the Capwell hotel. Kelly pushes Dylan through the window and kills him. Gina recovers the tape which recorded all the scene behind the suite two-way mirror. Kelly, traumatized, is put in an asylum managed by Dr. Rawlings. Pearl Bradford, acting like a patient, joins her to help her and find the trace of his brother, Brian, who was also interned.
Two nieces of C.C.'s come to live at the Capwell mansion, Courtney and Madeline. Courtney falls in love with Pearl and helps him to obtain a job of driver at the Capwells. Madeline is found murdered and her husband, David Laurent, is accused of the crime. He is defended by Julia, with who he has an adventure. David is finally discharged and Courtney admits having killed her sister in self-defence.
Lionel Lockridge discovers a new son in the person of Brick when this last one learns that he has been exchanged at the birth with Channing Junior by Minx Lockridge, who did not want to see her grandson raised by the Capwells. Amy and Brick end up getting married and Brick adopts Johnny like his son. But nothing goes well any more for the Lockridges : Warren becomes a chronic bettor and is surprised stealing money at the casino, while Augusta disappears with her lover and that Laken leaves California.
Gina's niece, Hayley Benson, joins her aunt and finds a job of maid at the Capwells. She falls in love with Ted, who, for his part, is harassed by a woman with long red nails called Roxanne. Roxanne turns to be in fact Jane Wilson, Ted's boss at the radio station where he works.
Mason is back to Santa Barbara, proclaiming having been saved by an evangelist named Lily Light. This last one is in fact the Gina's daughter, born from a rape when she was thirteen. Hayley is indoctrinated by Lily to protest against the opening of the casino. She accidentaly starts a fire in Buzz's Place during the manifestation and Amy dies in the flames. Not to have to testify against her at the trial, Ted, witness of the scene, accepts to marry Hayley.
Mason signs a contract with Julia to make a child to her. After several attempts, Julia finally falls pregnant and gives birth to a little girl, Samantha. Victim of a shipwreck with Cruz, Victoria benefits from his half-unconsciousness and of the fact that he takes her for Eden, to sleep with him. She falls pregnant and gives birth to a boy, Chip. Mason proposes to marry her and cries out that the child is his to protect the relation of Eden and Cruz and especially to be able to inherit more quickly.
Whereas Cruz and Eden organize their wedding, the car of this latter one is stopped by a woman who pushes her in a climb covered with snow in the Utah mountains and leaves her for dead in an helicopter accident. Eden is found paralysed and is welcomed by a mountain dweller named Cain Garver, a Vietnam veteran, who falls in love with her and sequesters her in his cabin.
Pearl helps Kelly and her roomate, Alice Jackson, to escape from the asylum. Kelly is sent in Europe to escape from justice after the murder of Dylan. Jeffrey Conrad is sent to join her to keep an eye on her and obviously, fall in love with her. Gina uses the tape proving the self-defence act of Kelly to force C.C. to marry her. But she ends to give the tape to the police and Kelly is cleared. This last one thus returns to the United States and marries Jeffrey.
Cruz cries the loss of Eden and, with Pearl, creates the Last resort agency, a detectives agency. Elena Nikolas, the young woman at the origin of Eden's disappearance, obtains a place there to approach the Capwells. This last one turns to be Pamela and C.C.'s daughter and seeks to be avenged from all the family. She kidnaps Mason and tries to murder Kelly on several occasions. Eden escapes from the cabin and rejoins Santa Barbara, pursued by Cain. Cruz and Pearl finally discover Elena's true identity. This last one is killed and her last words accuse Cruz to be his murderer. Cruz is immediately charged by Keith. Elena's adoptive father, Dr. Alex Nikolas, admits to have been present at the moment of the crime and to have seen Elena committing suicide. Pamela, who was believed to be dead, reappears, the face concealed because disfigured. Gina supplies her a potion to care for her and Pamela can find again her two sons, Mason and Jeffrey.
An adoption agency which sells children removed from their parents settles in town, directed by Paul Marshall, an old friend of Victoria's. Chip, Samantha and Johnny are kidnapped, but quickly found healthy and safe. Mason, in love with Julia, divorces Victoria, leaving her enough money to raise Chip alone. Victoria wants to resume her actress job, but becomes addicted to cocaine by the fault of her friend, director Mel Stock.
Lionel lives a new passion with Jane's mother, Caroline Wilson, and takes at his charge Jane and Alice, Caroline's hidden daughter. Alice's father, Gus Jackson, comes to be forgiven of his errors by his daughter and leaves the town with her. Lionel marries Caroline, but very quickly this latter dies from a rare disease.
Hayley, for her part, is raped and Brick is the first suspect. The rapist turns to be Ken, a waiter at Johnny's Place. Hayley and Ted have problems in their couple, especially after the return of Laken, and divorce. Hayley falls in love with Jake Morton, who works with Ted at the Abernathy stables, while Brick dates Jane. They both finish by leaving the town with Johnny.
Pamela looks for recovering C.C.. Sophia then hires a henchman to frighten her so that she would leave the town. This last one takes the initiative to explode her oil rig. Eden and Cruz finally refind each other, while Cain decides to stay downtown. He meets Andrea Bedford during the rescue after the explosion of the oil rig and they both fall in love. Andrea investigates in fact on a murderer called the Fox, who killed her father. Cruz and Cain come to help her and the Fox is uncovered : he is in fact Kathleen McDougall, a nurse of the hospital.
Cruz and Eden finally get married, when suddenly, Chip needs a bone-marrow transplant. Victoria is then obliged to avow to Cruz, only potential donor, that he is Chip's father. Victoria, who must enter a detoxication clinic for her drug problems, lets Chip being adopted by Eden and Cruz. Eden, precisely, discovers that she is sterile and goes to Europe to undergo an operation to be able to give birth again.
Gina loses the sight after a fight with C.C. and falls in love with her doctor, Dr. Scott Clark. But when Scott discovers that she continues to pretend her blindness whereas she is cured, he decides to break. Gina then returns with Keith and marries him. To be avenged of C.C., Pamela reveals to Keith the secret of the death of Hal Clark in the boathouse, 25 years ago : C.C. accidentally killed Hal during a fight, in front of Scott's eyes, who was then five. Under hypnosis, this last one reveals that Pamela came back this night and killed Hal. Scott falls in love with the doctor who hypnotized him, Dr. Heather Donnelly, whose father, Dr. Arthur Donnelly, arrives in town. On his side, after a short return with Pamela, C.C. has an affair with the journalist Lydia Saunders.
T.J., Laken's ex-boyfriend, joins her in Santa Barbara and obtains a job at the Armonti Enterprises. Sophia succumbs to his charm, but breaks when she discovers that he is in fact interested by her money. T.J. has thereafter an affair with Kelly. Pamela, who wants Jeffrey to come back to live in England with her, poisons Kelly. She is arrested and sent in an asylum. Jeffrey, seeing that his marriage comes to its end, plots to kill Kelly with the assistance of T.J., to obtain the heritage. At the last time, he changes his mind. Follows then a fight with T.J., where Jeffrey ends paralysed. He accepts to divorce Kelly and leaves the town. After Hayley was killed by a drunk roadhog, Jake sells his parts of the night-club The Lair to T.J. and also leaves Santa Barbara.
The bones found in the boathouse turn to be not those of Hal Clark's, but those of Dr. Mark McCormick's. Mason is obviously the first suspect. He leaves to investigate in the convent where Mary was a nun, but an explosion occurs and Mason is left for dead. Julia refuses to believe in his death and under the name of Sister Rebecca, meets Father Michael Donnelly, Sister Agatha and Sister Sarah, deaf-mute. She discovers that it is in fact Sister Agatha who killed Mark. During this time, Mason, who suffers from split personality, leaves to Las Vegas under the name of Sonny Sprocket. Gina and Keith make him come back in Santa Barbara and learn to him how to act like Mason, in the hope to recover the Capwell fortune. However, Keith is accused of corruption at the district attorney office and is obliged to leave the town. Gina repurchases and transforms the Lockridge mansion into a pension, when a dressmaker named Bunny Tagliatti, linked to the Maffia, arrives and rents all her bedrooms. Julia, discovering the love affair between Gina and Mason/Sonny, changes her mind during her wedding with him and is comforted in the arms of Father Michael.
Cain's superior during the war, Major Phillip Hamilton, accuses Cain of the death of the woman they both have loved, Soo Li. The Major asks to Ming Li, a young Vietnamese who says to be Cain's daughter, to destroy his couple with Andrea. On her side, Eden becomes a television journalist and investigates on the local gangs. She is raped and learns that she is pregnant. The first suspect is the member of one of the gangs, Critter. The rapist is called the video rapist, because he hides cameras at his victims home to film his rapes. C.C. organizes a dress ball to confound the rapist, dress ball during which Andrea is at her turn raped and killed. Major Hamilton, then Cain, are accused of the murder, but they both finish by leaving Santa Barbara definitively. The rapist continues to harass Eden, attacks Kelly, Sophia, Michael and kidnaps Julia.