Emily, who was born as Amanda Clarke, father was framed for treason when she was a little girl. After a lengthy trial, he was imprisoned for life, and was murdered in prison by agents of the people who framed him. Emily was separated from him after his trial and never saw him afterwards. She has now returned to the Hamptons as an adult to exact revenge on those who wronged her and her father. Her primary target is Victoria Grayson (Madeleine Stowe), matriarch of the Grayson family, who loved and betrayed her father. The show focuses on Emily's plot to destroy every individual who played a role in her father's imprisonment. Along the way, she discovers various facts about her father's past which change her plans many times. As the series progresses, Emily brings in other individuals as allies for her plan.
Though Emily's allies seem to come and go very quickly through the series, the one true friend that always stands by her is Nolan Ross (Gabriel Mann). This is by far my favorite relationship in the show. Nolan is the perfect, comic balance to Emily's more intense and emotional personality. You learn throughout the series that Nolan has always been there for her, even when she didn't know it. He always goes through with her sometimes ridiculous plots, and even when she pushes him away, he aways comes back. This relationship shows true loyalty in that show that centers mostly around deception and revenge.