Doctor Marlena Evans came to Salem to take a position at Salem Hospital as a psychiatrist. She soon met and fell in love with Don Craig, and the two became engaged. However, in 1977 Marlena's twin sister Samantha returned to Salem. Samantha felt resentment toward Marlena, and began to steal various items of Marlena's. When Marlena realized what Samantha was doing it was too late. Samantha managed to have Marlena committed to Bayview Sanitarium and took over Marlena's life. When Marlena escaped and tried to contact Don she was found before Don could get to her. Marlena was then subjected to shock therapy to keep her quiet.
Marlena would eventually be released from the sanitarium thanks to Don and Laura. However, Samantha had caused some serious problems in Don and Marlena's relationship, but the two reconciled and became engaged in December of 1977. Samantha was placed in a sanitarium in Colorado. Later the two reconciled when Marlena visited her sister.
Problems would arise between Don and Marlena once again when Don's ex-girlfriend Lorraine came to town with Don's long lost daughter Donna. Lorraine eventually left town, but Donna stayed behind. Donna had trouble adjusting to her new life with her father and his bride to be Marlena. On the day Don was to marry Marlena their wedding was interrupted when Donna was threatening to jump off a nearby building. Don and Marlena ran to her rescue, but in the process Don fell from a the building and injured his leg. Don's injuries forced him to drop out of his race for the senate.
On March 5, 1979 Marlena and Don Craig were finally married. Later that year Marlena learned she and Don would be having a child.
In 1980 Marlena gave birth to Don Craig Jr, however the child died of SIDS, and when Don blamed Marlena for the baby's death the two separated later that year.
In 1981, after refusing the advances of Kellam Chandler, Kellam raped Marlena. Later that year Marlena began to receive threatening phone calls and letters to her and her radio show. Marlena also began to council Jessica Blake, who was suffering from multiple personality disorder.
The threatening letters and phone calls continued throughout 1981, and women began turning up strangled to death. When Marlena discovered a strangled doll in her apartment she called the police, who sent Roman Brady over to her place to guard her.
Eugene appeared in Salem in 1982 and was a patient of Dr. Marlena Evans. Eugene kidnapped Marlena and took her back to his apartment. Eugene's apartment walls were covered with newspaper clippings about the stranglings and pictures of Marlena. Roman Brady and Don Craig rescued Marlena, and Eugene confessed to the killings. However, when the calls and letters continued Eugene was cleared, and hospitalized.
Later that year Marlena decided to take a vacation in Mexico to get away from the Strangler, who she feared would make her his next victim. Marlena however really went to visit her parents in Colorado. When the Strangler, Jake Kosnitchek, learned Marlena hadn't left for Mexico he went to Marlena's apartment to find her there, and strangled her. However, when Marlena returned to Salem Jake realized he had killed Marlena's sister Samantha, so he went back to Marlena's to finish the job. Jake showed up at Marlena's with a gun, but when Roman Brady noticed the incident and went in to save Marlena. Jake and Roman fought over the gun, and when it went off Jake had been shot and killed.
Roman and Marlena both grieved over the situation, and eventually fell in love. Before Roman could marry Marlena he had to have his wife legally declared dead. Roman believed his wife Anna was killed in a boating accident. Because her body was never found she couldn't be legally declared dead.
When Roman's dead wife Anna returned along with his daughter Carrie this posed a problem for Roman and Marlena. Marlena vowed to wait for Roman, and Roman eventually divorced Anna in 1982.
On February 9, 1983 Roman married Marlena Evans. At the wedding Alex Marshall attempted to have Roman murdered, but failed. Afterwards Marlena left for her honeymoon with Don Craig, disguised as Roman. Roman stayed behind and planned his revenge against Stefano and Alex.
Roman got the evidence he needed to put Stefano away, but Stefano was trying to make an escape from Salem, and had Marlena and Liz held hostage in order to make a safe getaway. Roman and Abe found Marlena and Liz, and Roman stopped Stefano from leaving. Stefano was sent to prison, where he suffered a stroke and died.
In 1983 Marlena and Sandy Horton witnessed Roman Brady kill Daisy ??? on the docks. They were shocked, and even though Marlena was married to Roman she reported the crime. Roman was arrested for the murders, but Marlena stood by him.
Roman escaped from jail and managed to fake his death, and Marlena stayed in touch with Roman. To go along with the illusion that Roman was dead Marlena married Eugene Bradford that year.
When Marlena learned she was pregnant Roman tried to get her to leave town, but Stefano prevented it. Stefano attempted to have Marlena murdered by Andre at a hospital charity benefit, but Roman managed to save Marlena.
On October 19, 1984 Marlena gave birth to Sami and Eric Brady. Sami took ill and required a blood transfusion from Roman to survive. Later that year Marlena would learn that Roman was killed by Stefano DiMera.
In 1985 Marlena was stalked by Stefano, and eventually he kidnapped her and the twins. Marlena was to be Stefano's wife, and the twins his children. Bo managed to rescue them, and after a chase with Stefano Marlena shot and killed him. Marlena was brought up on charges of murder, but when the DA refused to prosecute her and declared her innocence in court a mistrial was declared, and she was free.
Marlena took on John Black as her patient, she was determined to help him recover his past. John and Marlena spent a lot of time together, and when John seemed to know a lot about Stefano DiMera Marlena began to suspect he was Stefano DiMera, especially after she saw a Phoenix tattooed on his back.
Later Marlena found a file of a plastic surgeon which contained the before and after shots of Roman and John. Marlena was convinced he was Roman, and over time John took on the role of Roman.
In 1986 Marlena was trying to talk down a suicidal jumper when she fell from a window ledge. Marlena lay in a coma near death for a month. When she finally recover she and John Black/Roman 2 married on August 22, 1986.
In his years with the ISA Roman I worked with a man named Orpheus. While on assignment Orpheus' wife came to warn them they were in danger, and Roman I accidentally shot her, think she was an enemy. Orpheus and his sister in law Olivia plotted revenge against Roman. Orpheus kidnapped Marlena, but the ISA managed to get her back. Orpheus was using her to get John/Roman II to help him locate some stolen bonds. When she was rescued Orpheus was furious. In December of 1986 Orpheus faked Marlena's death by planting a bomb in Roman and Marlena's house. In reality Marlena was alive and well in Stockholm. Olivia came to Salem and was supposed to make John/Roman II fall in love with her, and then when John/Roman II betrayed Marlena they would reveal she was still alive. However, something unexpected happened, Olivia fell for John/Roman II. John/Roman II learned Marlena was being held in Stockholm, and with the help of Shane. Bo, Kayla, and Patch they searched for her. John/Roman II confronted Orpheus, and when Orpheus shot at John/Roman II Olivia took the bullet for him, and died. John/Roman II shot and killed Orpheus, but Orpheus had the last laugh. Marlena was already aboard a plane, which crashed as John/Roman II and the others watched. No body was found, and Marlena was thought dead.
In 1991, Marlena awoke and found herself in a little hut on a mysterious island. Confused, Marlena made her way to a cargo plane and escaped. Onboard she managed to find some decent cloths and some money to make her way back to Salem. Marlena tried to contact Roman II/John, but every time she tried to find him. Roman II/John vanished. Finally, one night Marlena and Roman II/John met on the docks. Roman II/John took Marlena back to their house and he kept her hidden from everyone until he could figure out what they needed to do. Roman II/John asked Kimberly Brady to help Marlena by hypnotizing her. Marlena recalled being held on an island and hearing Roman calling for her. Roman II/John was puzzled because he had been in Salem. A medal that Marlena was wearing also puzzled him. Eventually Marlena was reunited with her entire family, though her twins did not recognize her. Isabella, Roman II/John's fiancee, was left out in the cold.
Roman II/John traced the medal that Marlena wore to the small island of Saint Christoble. Roman II/John and Marlena flew there and were shocked when they came face to face with the real Roman Brady. Roman II/John thought it was a trick, but Roman knew the truth about his imposter and he feared for Marlena's safety. Roman was told that if his imposter ever saw him then the imposter would automatically kill Marlena because it was programmed into his head. Confused, all three of them returned to Salem. Roman told them that he was held on the same island that Marlena was and he too had a medal around his neck. Roman II and Marlena had to come to terms with the fact that he was not Roman, but John Black. Devastated, John turned to Isabella for comfort and Marlena was reunited with the real Roman Brady.
Roman, John, and Marlena all traced their medals to a Mayan temple in Mexico. Roman Brady, Marlena Evans Brady, Isabella Toscano, John Black, Bo Brady, and Carly Manning all went to Mexico in search of the truth. Once in Mexico they found Victor Kiriakis chained in one of the temples. Eventually they made their way to a room in which Stefano DiMera was waiting for them. Using the medals, Stefano gained access to a set of Codacies which promised the holder power beyond imagination. Stefano also held a satchel which held the truth about John's past. Suddenly an earthquake occurred, setting of a volcano, and the temple began to crumble and fill with lava. Stefano threw the satchel into the fire and was then crushed and lost among the falling debris. John managed to recover the satchel, but the contents were badly burned. After Bo and Carly had a symbolic Mayan wedding, everyone headed home.
Roman and Marlena tried to put their life and marriage back together, but Roman's police job kept interfering. Roman had to go undercover and didn't tell Marlena what he was doing. Roman disappeared and Marlena thought that he had left. Eventually Roman revealed himself to her and they continued to rebuild their lives together.
In 1992, Kimberly Brady was hit by a drunk driver named Roger Lombard. After he was released, Marlena counseled him and his family. Roger was not only a drunk, but an abusive husband and father. Roger fell in love with Marlena, which angered Roger's wife, Stella. Stella kidnapped Marlena when she was to go out of town on a business trip and she threw Marlena into a pit at an abandon warehouse. In the pit, Marlena battled her own deadens and had flashbacks of her twin sister locking her in the closet. Eventually John Black came around looking for her, but he ended up falling into the pit as well. Both of them thought that they were going to die together, but moments before the warehouse was to be demolished, they were rescued. John and Marlena appeared on Jennifer Devereaux talk show about the incident, which had rekindled their love for one another.
In 1993, John felt it would be best if he left Salem because he could not control his feelings for Marlena. When John was about to leave Salem, Marlena came to his plane to stop him. Instead, the couple made love. Later, they made love during a Titan party.
Marlena learned that she was pregnant later, but she didn't know whose child it was. She was relieved when the preliminary tests showed that the child was Roman's. What Marlena didn't know was that the baby was John's, her daughter Sami had switched the results of a paternity test. After the baby was delivered by John and Kristen at the Horton cabin, Sami kidnapped her little sister and planned to sell her to a couple. Sami's plan was ruined when John and Kristen posed as a couple and bought Belle. After Sami was exposed, Sami claimed she did it because she was jealous.
Marlena knew that something was wrong with Sami, who was acting very hostile toward her mother. Jaime Caldwell eventually confessed to Marlena that Sami was bulimic. When Marlena confronted Sami, Sami told her that it was her own mother's fault. Sami shocked Marlena by telling her that she had seen her making love with John and she hated her.
In 1994, Marlena and Roman were preparing to have Belle Christened when Stefano showed up. Marlena knew that Stefano knew about her affair with John, so she blurted it out in front of everyone instead of letting Stefano expose her. Roman was crushed that his wife and best friend had betrayed him. Stefano did some investigating and thanks to a stolen diary of Sami Brady's, Stefano learned that John was really Belle's father. Stefano took this information to Roman. Sami eventually admitted that she had switched the paternity test results.
In late 1994, John received a mysterious puzzle. When he assembled the puzzle it showed a picture of an old plantation which he somehow recognized. After learning that the place was Maison Blanche, John went to New Orleans to visit it. When he arrived he was taken prisoner by Stefano and his henchwoman Celeste. Stefano chained John up in the basement and planned to re-brainwash him. Celeste, who liked John, told him that everything he needed to save himself was in his cell. After searching the cell, John found a block that had Johnny Black, 1984 inscribed on it. Behind the block John found a necklace with a crucifix and a prayer on a piece of paper. Using a recording of John's voice, Stefano lured Marlena to New Orleans as well. When she arrived, Celeste knocked her out with either and locked her up with John. Stefano was planning on erasing John's memory, so Marlena tried to prevent him from doing it with a strip show. Stefano also forced Marlena to call Roman and tell him that she was on vacation with John Black. Meanwhile, Celeste became jealous of Marlena because she knew that Stefano was in love with her. Later that year, Kristen, Tony, Peter, Jen, Bo, and Billie all came to Maison Blanche for a charity event Kristen held. While there, Jen and Peter made love. Also, Billie saw a woman who looked like Bo's dead wife Hope, but nobody would believe her. Hope was at Maison Blanche, but she was called Gina by Stefano and Celeste. Roman also showed up, but to arrest Peter Blake for trafficking drugs in one of his clubs. A jealous Celeste leaked gas into the cell where John and Marlena were being held and started a fire. Roman managed to rescue them.
By the end of 1994, Roman filed for a divorce and took and ISA job outside of Salem.
Stefano returned to Salem in late 1994. Stefano knew of Mike Horton's involvement with a woman in the mid-east who tricked him into transporting arms. He blackmailed Mike into providing him with the key-code to Marlena's apartment. Stefano rented the apartment next to her and built a secret passage between the two through Marlena's armoir. Stefano began visiting Marlena in the nights, but he wore a mask to hide his identity. Stefano's nightly visits opened up Marlena's soul for the taking, and Satan took it. Marlena became the desacrator and under Satan's possession she burned down the Salem Place Christmas Tree; burned down the Brady Fish Market; attempted to kill Bo and Billie during their 1st wedding; appeared nakid at Bo and Billie's second wedding, was arrested, and shot her a cop to escape; kidnapped and painted pentagrams on Kristen's nakid body; and finally tried to kill John Black by burning down a church she locked him inside of.
In 1995, John, Father Francis, Kristen DiMera, and Caroline Brady all worked to help exorcise Marlena. Marlena tricked Stefano into untieing her from her bed, where John had bound her, and she promptly threw him off her penthouse terrace. Stefano lived, but he was paralyzed and suffered from amnesia. Abe Carver and Pat Hamilton wanted to arrest Marlena for her attempted murder, but when they came face to face with her supernatural powers they realized that Marlena was not responsible for her actions. In an attempt to break John's faith, his late wife Isabella appeared. However, John realized this wasn't his Isabella and she promptly transformed into a demon. Eventually Marlena died and a funeral was to be held for her. John refused to believe that Marlena was dead and he carried her dead body to the church altar where God brought her back to life and rid her of the demon.
Marlena felt extremely guilty about what she had done under the demon's possession. Marlena felt especially bad for Stefano, who was paralyzed and amnesiac. Marlena took it upon herself to help Stefano regain the use of his legs and she invited him to live with her. As Marlena worked with Stefano, Stefano began to fall in love with Marlena.
In December of 1995, Tony DiMera was shot and killed and John Black was arrested for his murder, a murder that Tony himself framed John for. Stefano and Marlena went to Aremid. Marlena went to be with John and Stefano went to say goodbye to Tony.
Marlena continued to council Stefano in Aremid as 1996 began. Stefano begins having faint memories from his past. Stefano recalls giving gifts to a beautiful woman, who continues to reject him. Stefano also found himself attracted to Marlena. One night while out in a rain storm, Stefano was struck by lightening. Celeste found him and took him back to the Blake House. Mike feared that Stefano could have regained his memory after being hit by lightening, but Stefano claims he remembered nothing.
In 1996, John went to trial for killing Tony DiMera and Stefano DiMera, who had his memory back, blackmailed the judge into sentencing John to death. The Woman in White made herself known to Marlena and told her that Stefano was back to his old tricks and hid Tony's diary, which proves John's innocence. On the night of John's execution, Stefano dined with Marlena Brady at the Blake House. Marlena manages to get Tony's diary and give it to the Woman in White. The Woman in White dropped it on the way to the courthouse, but Jack Devereaux found it and got it there in time to save John from the gas chamber. Meanwhile, Marlena told Stefano that she knows he ordered John's death sentence and she hates him. Stefano abducted Marlena and tried to make his getaway, but Celeste followed him and demanded he take her too. Stefano refused, so Celeste told him that Lexie is his daughter, in hopes of staying with him. Stefano escaped with Marlena into some underground tunnels below Aremid. Lexie tried to reason with her father, but he and Marlena are lost in a cave in. Stefano managed to escape to the ocean, but John rescued Marlena. Stefano escapes via helicopter and vowed to return for Marlena.
Kristen manages to convince the Woman in White, who had remembered her past but kept it to herself, to return to Salem with her and live in the DiMera Mansion. John moved in with Kristen to try and heal their broken relationship, even though he also loved Marlena. Marlena also moved into the DiMera Mansion because John insisted that she was not safe from Stefano on her own. Marlena moved into a guest room and was unaware that the love letter John wrote her from death row was among her many papers in her briefcase. Kristen went through Marlena's room and uncovers the love letter that John wrote to her. Kristen hid the letter because she feared she'd lose John if Marlena reads it. However, Marlena found the letter and almost told John the truth, but Kristen announced that she was pregnant. Marlena agreed to hold off telling John the truth because Kristen's pregnancy was a very delicate one and she had to remain stress free. Shortly after, John proposed and Marlena moved out because she can't bear to see John and Kristen together.
Marlena put John under hypnosis because he believed he knew who the Woman in White was. Under hypnosis, John told everyone that she was Rachel Blake, Kristen and Peter's mother. Rachel was being pursued by Stefano DiMera and Rachel called John, who was a young priest, over to her house to talk about Stefano. Stefano eventually planted a bomb in Rachel's husbands car, but Rachel was also in the car when the bomb went off. Rachel lived, but was badly scarred. Stefano believed that Rachel was dead and he kidnapped and brainwashed John because John knew that Stefano killed the Blakes. The Woman denied this claim at first, but later admits that it is true. Rachel was reunited with her children. However, Rachel knows the evils they have both done in the name of love and urges them to tell the truth. John went under the drug a second time and this time Kristen asked John, while everyone else was out of the room, if he loved Kristen or Marlena more. John answered Marlena, which infuriated her. Stefano returned to town and Kristen agreed to help him kidnap Marlena. Marlena and Rachel were to fly to San Francisco so that Rachel could have her face reconstructed. Kristen gave Stefano the plane they were to take and he attempted to hi-jack the plane, but was forced to flee when the police learned that Stefano was in Salem from Hope's case.
Marlena learned that Kristen told Stefano what plane she was on and was about to tell John the truth when Kristen faked some abdominal pains. Marlena and Rachel made plans for another trip and Marlena gave Kristen a list she was to obey. Kristen was not to sleep with John and she was not to wear his engagement ring. Stefano arranged for himself to be captured, so it appeared that Marlena and Rachel were safe to fly to San Francisco. After their plane took off, John learned that the man they captured was wearing a latex mask. Upon searching the DiMera Mansion they found Rachel Blake bound and gagged. Stefano, disguised as Rachel, had snuck onboard the plane with Marlena. Stefano faked a plane crash which convinced Salem that Marlena and Stefano had both died.
Stefano took Marlena to some caverns below Paris which he ruled ask King and he intended to make her his queen. Marlena became deeply depressed and a doctor told Stefano that if she wasn't cheered up soon she could die. Stefano produced a set of goggles that allowed the person wearing them to view people who were dear to them. Marlena was able to see John and her children though these goggles. However, Stefano learned that the other set of goggles he had left in Salem were being used and realized John was the one using them.
In the Paris underground, Marlena began to write things in a daily journal. Stefano planted a bomb in the warehouse where the second set of goggles were in order to kill John. The plan failed, but Stefano convinced Marlena that John died in the explosion. Stefano agrees to let Marlena out of the cage and takes her to a street carnival where they are spotted by Vivian and Ivan. Upon learning John was in Paris, Stefano sent a forged fax from John to Kristen and Rachel asking them to come to Paris.
John realized that Stefano is holding Marlena prisoner in the Paris underground. To lure him out, John set up a huge ball, where Marie Antoinette's crown would be displayed. John knew that Stefano would try to steal it for his "Queen" Marlena. John also knew that if Stefano follows the game, Marlena would show up wearing a gold gown. Unfortunately, Stefano anticipated this. Stefano took Marlena to the ball, but he arranged for many many women to be dressed exactly like Marlena. John, Kristen, Abe, Lexie, and John's french cop friend Renee combed the ball looking for Marlena and each had a mini TV set that was hooked up to many cameras at the ball. Marlena and Kristen came face to face and they argued. Marlena ran off and eventually found John. Unfortunately, Stefano stabbed John with a needle and drug him off while Kristen watched. Stefano also managed to steal the crown by having someone impersonate Renee.
In the Paris Underground, Stefano put John on trial for his crimes against him. John was found guilty and was sentenced to be executed by beheading. Marlena attempted to stop the execution, but failed. Luckily, Vivian and Ivan were searching for Stefano and managed to free John from the guillotine he was in. John and Marlena ran for the tunnels and Stefano perused them. Kristen decided to find the Paris Underground to try and save John and her mother, Rachel, insisted on going. An explosion in the underground buried Kristen and Rachel, but Abe and Lexie managed to save them. They all searched for John and Lexie. When the found him, John had a gun and was holding it on Stefano. Marlena was hurt during the explosion and John gave his gun to Rachel to hold on Stefano so he could carry Marlena. Stefano managed to escape and Rachel followed him. Rachel and Stefano ended up near a gas tank. Rachel, knowing the consequences, shot at Stefano. The tank exploded and Stefano and Rachel were presumed dead. Both Marlena and Kristen were taken to a hospital to be checked out. Marlena was fine and returned home.
Unknown to Salem, Stefano hired a woman named Susan Banks to impersonate Kristen, who had lost her baby in Paris. Marlena and Kristen had a deal, once the baby was born, Marlena would tell John the truth. Susan Banks went into labor on February 20, 1997 and was rushed to the hospital. Kristen arrived and disguised herself as a nurse so she could watch. John surprised Kristen by having brought a priest who was going to marry them before their child was born. Marlena learned this and attempted to stop the ceremony, but she was too late. John and Kristen were married, but it was actually Susan that John married. The baby, John Jr., was born.
Marlena had conflicting feelings about whether to tell John the truth about Kristen. She went to a chapel and asked God to give her the strength to tell John the truth. Marlena was about to leave when John came in and prayed as well. Marlena overheard John tell God that he hoped Marlena no longer loved him because he promised to keep his vows to Kristen. Marlena realized John would never break his vows, so she let him go.
Roman supposedly died while on an ISA mission in April of 1997. He sent letters to Marlena, John, and Carrie. He gave Marlena and John his blessing to be together and forgave them for the affair and he asked Carrie to watch out for her sister Sami.
Susan Banks was crying in Salem Park when Hope found her and suggested she talk to a friend, Dr. Marlena Evans. Susan went to see Marlena and told her that an evil woman was trying to steal her husband and baby. Susan told Marlena that vampires were after her. To calm her fears, Marlena gave Susan a rock and told her it would keep vampires away. Marlena came to the DiMera mansion and found the rock she had given Susan on the floor. Everything came together and Marlena realized that Kristen lost her baby and was passing Susan's off as her own. Unfortunately, Kristen tricked Marlena into going into the secret room. Once locked in, Kristen told Marlena that Stefano was going to come and pick her up.
Susan began to worry about Marlena and Kristen told her that Stefano had kidnapped Marlena and he'd do the same to her. Later, Susan found a small TV Monitor that was hooked into a camera in the secret room. Susan saw that Marlena was in there and she decided to release her. However, Kristen stopped Susan just in time and told Susan that if she let Marlena out, Marlena would tell John the truth and that John would hate both of them and marry Marlena. When Marlena admitted to Susan that she loved John, Susan realized she had to keep Marlena locked up. Susan secretly began to learn to impersonate Kristen so she could take her place as John's wife. Susan tricked Kristen into entering the secret room by saying that Marlena had escaped. Once inside, Susan locked Kristen and Marlena into the room together. Susan then took over Kristen's life and managed to fool everyone. From a television monitor inside the secret room, Marlena and Kristen were forced to watch Susan seduce John.
Susan planned an Elvis themed wedding for herself and John, which Kristen and Marlena were forced to watch from the secret room. Desperate to stop the wedding, Kristen tried to dig through the wall and ended up hitting a gas line, which knocked Kristen and Marlena unconscious. Stefano showed up dressed as a waiter and was planning to escape with Marlena. Unfortunately, Laura showed up, still wearing her pajamas from the hospital, and accused Kristen, who was really Susan, of kidnapping Marlena. Laura slapped Susan and her fake teeth landed in Vivian's glass of champagne. Susan confessed everything and John managed to save Kristen and Marlena from the secret room, both had passed out. Kristen woke up from the gas affects first and begged John to marry her immediately. John agreed, but as they were about to marry, Marlena came to and told John that Kristen lost his baby in Paris and hired Susan Banks to impersonate her and give birth to a baby, which Kristen claimed was theirs. Kristen admitted it and then grabbed a police officer's gun and threatened to kill Marlena, but John stopped her. Kristen, Ivan, and Vivian were all arrested. Kristen managed to make bail and was out shortly after.
John arranged for Marlena, Lexie, and Laura Horton to all have a relaxing day at the Salem Spa. Stefano snuck in and almost kidnapped Marlena, but Lexie saw him and ratted him out. Stefano escaped, but Marlena was saved.
John planned an engagement party for Marlena at the Penthouse Grill. Kristen, Vivian, and Ivan crashed the party and when Kristen heard John propose to Marlena, she lost it. Kristen went out to the ledge and threatened to jump, but John talked her down. Stefano was also at the party and planned to kidnap Marlena, but Kristen ruined his chance and he was furious with her. John and Marlena planned to marry in July of 97, but Kristen and Stefano brought the wedding to a halt when Kristen showed up at the wedding with Marlena's dead ex-husband, Roman. Later, John and Marlena learned from Shane that Roman claimed to be dead because he really was dying of a deadly virus and didn't want his family to watch him suffer. Kristen convinced John and Marlena that Roman would be the most comfortable living in the DiMera mansion. Roman refused to stay in the hospital and accepted Kristen's offer. Kristen further caused problems by telling Roman that she and John were married and Marlena never became involved with anyone else after he left Salem.
Eric Brady returned to Salem in August of 1997 when he learned that John and Marlena were going to marry. However, when he came back he learned that his dad, Roman Brady, was alive. Roman told Marlena that he still loved her, when suddenly his heart stopped. Marlena saved Roman and Eric began to wonder if he could re-unite his parents.
Roman was admitted to the hospital to undergo a series of tests. Unfortunately, the diseases Roman had was very advanced. Marlena wanted to attend a conference in LA, but was unable to leave Roman. However, Carrie and Mike agreed to go in her place. Carrie and Mike met up with Dr. Brock in L.A., who gave Carrie the name of a drug that could help Roman. Carrie faxed the prescription to Marlena in Salem and the drug gave Roman renewed strength, though it wasn't a cure.
Stefano allowed himself to be captured and then told John that only he had the cure for Roman. John didn't want to believe him, but it seemed there was no other way to save Roman. John, with Lexie and eventually Abe's help, broke Stefano out of jail. John and Stefano speed to the airfield where John's plane awaited them. Kristen managed to convince John and Stefano to let her come along. Marlena also wanted to go, but John said she should remain behind because this could be a trap. However, Hope decided to tag along to keep an eye on Kristen. Stefano was furious when John found Hope stowed away and wanted to return to Salem and leave her behind, but they couldn't because they would be captured for sure.
Roman's health began to decline and he admits to Eric that before he died he wanted to marry Marlena. Eric told his mom his father's dying wish. Because she believed the cure was lost, John had contacted her from the compound and told her that the vial was dropped, Marlena decided to marry Roman. John, Hope, Stefano, and Kristen showed up at the hospital with the cure just as Marlena was about to marry Roman, because it was his dying wish, The cure was administered to Roman and Stefano was granted a pardon for his crimes. Marlena explained to John why she was going to marry Roman and he understood.
Stefano's cure began to fail, which Stefano knew would happen. Stefano said that the only way to save Roman was to donate his own blood, mix it with some other drugs, and give it to Roman. Stefano had also suffered from the disease Roman had and he had been saved in a similar manor. However, Stefano only agreed to do this is Marlena would forgive him and be his friend. Stefano announced that he wanted to become a respected citizen of Salem, secretly it was all a part of his master plan. Marlena reluctantly agreed and gave the second cure to Roman, which worked.
Roman was released from the hospital, but Marlena and John were told that any stress could cause Roman to relapse. Therefore, John and Marlena were forced to hide their love. Eric decided to use this to his own advantage and tried to push his mom and dad back together. John soon became frustrated with the entire situation when Roman moved into the guest room in Marlena's penthouse, which forced John to move back in with Kristen to keep up the charade that they were married. Roman soon began to see that there is problems with John and Kristen's marriage. Kristen tells Roman that she and John are having problems because another woman is trying to steal him from her.
Kristen became somewhat crazy and thought that if she could get Elvis back, John may be able to love her again. Kristen goes to Susan and tells her that the only way the baby can be protected from Stefano is if she raised him. Celeste and Marlena soon learn that Stefano is the father of Susan's child, but Stefano refuses to acknowledge it. Later, Marlena hears Kristen talking to a woman about getting her son back. Kristen lured Susan over to the DiMera mansion and drugged her with spiked eggnog. She then tricked Susan into signing away all legal rights over little Elvis to her. Kristen, disguised herself as Susan, and then kidnapped little Elvis. When Susan confronted Kristen, Kristen had the legal documents that proved the child was now hers. Susan almost attempted to kill herself, but John stopped her before she could jump into the icy Salem River. Susan went to get her brother, Thomas (the third triplet), to help her steal back little Elvis. However, Sister Mary Moira stopped Thomas before he could do anything sinful to Kristen. When Stefano learned what Kristen had done he was outraged and helped John steal back little Elvis and return him to Susan. Kristen took Susan to court, but Susan, John, and Marlena double crossed her. John delayed Kristen and Susan pretended to be Kristen at the courthouse and said what she did was wrong and withdrew the legal agreement Susan had signed. When Kristen learned what they had done to her she was furious. John arranged for Susan and Little Elvis to leave the country safely and live in peace. Marlena and John said goodbye to Susan and watched her leave. Stefano arrives at the airport after Susan has left. Stefano vowed to John that he would find his son again.
Kristen was at Salem Place when she received a call from Stefano telling her that John and Marlena just sent Susan and the baby off to an unknown country. Kristen is furious and decides to get revenge. She seems Roman and Roman tells Kristen that he's planning on proposing to Marlena today. Kristen, knowing that John and Marlena are aboard his jet, tells Roman that Marlena is at the airport and that he should use John's jet to propose to her in the air. Thinking it is a romantic idea, Roman decided to do that. Roman went to the airport and found John and Marlena on John's jet talking about how they hate deceiving Roman.
A New Years eve party was thrown at the Penthouse Grill Roman showed up at the party and planned on confronting John and Marlena, but he passed out. Roman was rushed to the hospital and Mike told them that Roman's blood pressure was dangerously high. Kristen went to visit Roman in the hospital and Roman told her the woman John was cheating on her with was John. Kristen pretended that it was all over, but Roman convinced her not to let John and Marlena know they were on to them and that they should fight for them. Roman, knowing Marlena had a date with John, asked Marlena out for the same night. Marlena accepted and decided to tell Roman the truth. Meanwhile, John overheard Roman and Kristen talking and realized that Roman already knew the truth. Roman and Marlena meet at Chez Vous, but before Marlena could confess, Roman told her that he knew about her and John. John suddenly showed up to tell Marlena about Roman's deception, but Marlena says she knows. John and Marlena both told Roman that Kristen was an evil and vindictive woman. Kristen lost her last friend in Salem that day.
In February on 1998, John and Marlena found Kristen DiMera's body floating in the Blake house swimming pool. The coroner pronounced her death a suicide, John had a message on his answering machine from Kriste and he took it as a suicide note and blamed himself for Kristen's death. In reality, the person who was killed was Penelope Kent, Susan's long lost sister. However, nobody in Salem ever learned that and everyone believed Kristen was dead.
A funeral for Kristen was held at St. Lukes and all of Salem attended. Laura attended, wearing a bright red outfit. During the service, Laura recalled going to the Blake House the day of Jen's funeral and shooting at Kristen. Later, Stefano stood up and publicly slandered everyone in the room and blamed them all for Kristen's suicide. Stefano got so worked up that he had a heart attack, but Lexie saved him. Stefano was rushed to the hospital.
Abe and Roman learned from the coroner that the drug in Kristen's system was Placiden. Upon hearing this, Marlena tells Roman that Placiden is the drug that she prescribed for Laura. Marlena and Roman went to the Blake house and upon searching they found Laura's prescription bottle. The case was reopened and Laura became the number one suspect.
Abe and Roman got a search warrant to search Laura's house and they found the coat she was wearing the night of "Kristen's" murder. A button matching the ones on her coat was found at the Blake house, but Laura had sown one on where she had lost one. Laura was driving to the Penthouse Grill for Susan and Edmund's wedding when she became caught up in her thoughts and crashed her car. Laura was taken to the hospital and soon after was arrested for Kristen's murder. Marlena learned about Laura's arrest and came to the station, but Laura blamed Marlena for her arrest. Laura admitted that she went to the Blake house and shot at Kristen, but because Kristen didn't die of a gun shoot wound, she was innocent. However, Abe suggests that when she didn't kill Kristen with her gun, she drugged her instead. Laura insisted that she lost her prescription long ago and Kristen must have found it and been using it. Marlena decided to have Kristen's body exhumed to see if Kristen how long the Placiden had been in Kristen's system.
Laura was put on trial for killing Kristen DiMera. Mickey pleaded with her to take an insanity plea, but she refused. Luckily, Stefano showed up with Celeste, who's story got Laura off the hook for killing Kristen. Celeste remembered being at the Blake house and seeing Laura shoot at Kristen, and that Kristen fell down. Laura left, but Kristen got up. However, Laura was convicted of attempted murder and was ordered to be institutionalized pending a psychiatric evaluation. Marlena pulled some strings and managed to allow Laura to come home as an out patient. Laura was touched that Marlena did this and they became friends once again.
Before leaving Salem, Kristen had pulled off one last scheme. Kristen had left a note for Marlena from Susan thanking her for everything she had done for her. Kristen also included a piece of chocolate candy that she knew Marlena liked. However, Kristen had filled it full of penicillin, something Marlena was deathly allergic to. However, it was Belle who actually ate the chocolate. Luckily, Roman came to the penthouse and found her next to an open bottle of Brady's penicillin pills and thought Belle had eaten them. Roman gave Belle an injection of insulin and rushed her to the hospital. Roman's quick thinking saved Belle's life. As he watched Marlena and John with Belle, Roman made one of the most important decisions of his life. For months, Marlena was struggling to choose whether she wanted to spend her life with John or Roman. Seeing that she truly loved John and that Belle needed both her parents, Roman unselfishly backed away from Marlena. Soon after they reunited, John and Marlena became engaged once again.
John took Marlena to New Orleans for a romantic weekend and ended up running into Hope and Bo. When Hope came back to the hotel, Bo, John, and Marlena were waiting for her. Hope wanted to return to the swamp and was talked into letting Bo go with her. Later, John and Marlena went to what was left of Maison Blanche. John found a shocking photo there, which he pocketed.