Val was there - I guess that counts as a hospital colleague? So were Kayla and Jennifer, but obviously they were there more in a friendly capacity than as co-workers.
Hope opted out of the party because she's upset with Marlena over her decision to certify Ben sane - not because she was busy trying to find a semi-legal way to run Ben out of town (of course that may be what she did with her time). It's petty to put decades of friendship on ice for that reason, but she obviously expects Marlena to behave like her and allow her personal feelings to get in the way of executing her professional duties. No wonder Marlena asked Kayla to be her Matron of Honor instead of Hope!
Eve's presence at the party also confounded me until Brady walked in and went up to her.
I guess Claire got the responsibility of organizing the bachelorette party since she's Marlena's closest, onscreen female relative (Belle didn't appear on the scene until later).
I wish they'd let characters/couples who are offscreen have normal lives - date other people and have children. Did Noah have to be sick again? Why not say Carrie's heavily pregnant with her and Austin's second kid so she can't fly? The same for Belle and Shawn - they've been together for ages offscreen (going by Claire's age, 18-19 years), so why don't they have another child yet? I know Belle has problems carrying a baby to term, but it's crazy to believe that, in all that time, they wouldn't have explored either of the other options available to them (surrogacy/adoption). It would be so easy to populate the family trees when characters are offscreen and bring them on later (as teens/young adults), instead of EVERY baby having to be born onscreen, in some traumatic situation, usually somewhere other than the hospital.
I find Susan dreadfully cringe. I know this is how she's been for most of her tenure, and it's not a knock on Stacy Haiduk (who I think has commendably played the role very much as Eileen Davidson did) but this kind of 'zany' character is hopelessly outdated and no longer funny. I hope Stacy Haiduk, who was very impressive when she played a dual role on Y&R, has more story as one of Susan's alter-egos so she can show off her acting chops.
Paul and Will's dialogue about the latter's hands was a little risque - I didn't think this show would go there given how they've watered down all the other scenes of intimacy between their gay couples. A few years ago, when Guy Wilson was still playing Will, we'd have SEEN what those hands were capable of. Well, maybe not exactly, but the Will-Paul affair love scenes were smoking hot. Ron can write it (he did for Lucas & Brad on GH) and Christopher Sean can play it, I guess the unknown quantities are the network execs and Chandler Massey. At least he's not as awful as Freddie "Don't get too intimate, I'm straight AF" Smith.