“All too often, we mask the truth in artifice, concealing ourselves for fear of losing the ones we love or prolonging a deception for those we wish to expose. We hide behind that which brings us comfort from pain and sadness, or use it to repel a truth too devastating to accept.”
Padma’s been missing for six weeks, and most of the residents of the Hamptons haven’t seen very much of each other either. Victoria and Conrad are making plans for their annual Halloween masquerade ball which was cancelled last year because of Daniel’s murder trail. Conrad is moving forward with his gubernatorial campaign and has a meet-and-greet in the works at The Stowaway. It’s his chance to get to know the little people better.
Nolan, on the other hand, hasn’t left his office in those six weeks. The place is filled with empty pizza boxes and cartons of Chinese take out. He’s been scrawling ideas and clues on every surface around him, including the windows, and he’s wearing some sad-looking scuffy slippers. He’s also tried to get some help in locating Padma from a detective at the NYPD but he’s turned up nothing. Amanda walks in and tells him that she’s worried about him. Well, so are we. Just take a look at him. The poor guy is a mess and needs a shower, at the very least. The last thing he needs right now is more revengeyness. I guess what he needs doesn’t matter, because just as Amanda finishes telling him how great a guy he is for saving Jack’s life, Nolan’s cell phone rings and it’s Jack, asking for his help. He says to Amanda, “start your rev-engines.” As she dashes out the door, she tells Nolan, that if you want to find Padma, you need to help me.
Victoria is sitting at home, checking who RSVP, when Ashley walks in with a fist full of envelopes, some which contain campaign contributions, but one which bears a postmark from 1973 and has a note on the front – “expect the unexpected.” The RSVP says that it’s from “your loving son”. Ashley then skips off to help Conrad prepare for his gathering at The Stowaway and can’t wait to tell him about the mysterious party invitation. Conrad has hired a campaign manager, Evan Spradlin, and with Jack Porter on board, the team thinks they’re going to win the hearts, minds and votes of the working class folks. Apparently, if you want to be Governor of New York, the only place you have to campaign is in the Hamptons. I guess that’s really where the donations are going to come from, anyway. What they don’t know is that Jack has played the secret tape recordings Nate Ryan made during his conversations with Conrad. Jack’s job is to be Conrad’s “earwig” but it isn’t going to go quite as well as Team Grayson thinks it will. For a while, Jack plays along, feeding Conrad information on the people in attendance and Conrad is feeling pretty good about it. Then a man by the name of Tom Mullen stands up to ask Conrad a question. After Jack whispers that Tom is the owner of Tom’s Crab Shack, giving Conrad the chance to compliment him on crab cakes that Conrad has never eaten in his life, the restaurateur asks about Amanda Clarke – specifically about David Clarke and the possibility that some shenanigans went on during Clarke’s trial. Jack jumps in, pretending that he’s shocked and stunned by the question, but Conrad tries to turn it around, stating that if he’s elected, he’ll personally see to it that David Clarke is given a presidential pardon. Nolan is at the top of the stairs, grinning like the Cheshire Cat.
Daniel is upset with Aiden, as it seems that the Revenge school grad has taken it upon himself to move Trask’s funds into some other accounts. After Aiden leaves, Trask walks in on Daniel, warning about the possible repercussions this move will have. Daniel tells him that he doesn’t like the fact that Trask threatened him and his girlfriend (real)Amanda. Trask responds that The Initiative doesn’t makes threats, they handle things a little differently. Trask then says that The Initiative will be liquidating their assets in Grayson Global, ASAP, delivering the message that while they may be parting as gentlemen today, tomorrow is Daniel’s problem.
Daniel calls Amanda, asking her to be his date for the masquerade ball – they haven’t been in touch over the past six weeks, either. She agrees to go, mainly because Victoria had made it very clear that she didn’t want her there. As she’s speaking, Amanda is cutting the bloom of a black rose from its’ stem. The next thing we know, Victoria is getting a delivery of 11 black roses, with a card that says “I’ll be wearing the 12th one. From your loving son.” Charlotte’s private school tuition hasn’t gone to waste and she points out to her mother that black roses are the symbol of dying love.
Trask, having left Daniel’s office, gets into his car and Aiden is in the back seat with a gun. The two of them take a ride to where The initiative has been holding Padma and her father. When they open a door in the building, Padma is lying on a table and Trask says that she joined her father when she was killed that morning. Trask then gets a little too cocky and starts telling Aiden that everything has a purpose, like having a sister who does drugs. He taunts Aiden, telling him that there’s a motion detector that’s alerted the police, who will arrive to find Aiden standing over Trask’s body after he shoots him. Aiden says that he’s not going to shoot him and, true to his word, snaps Trask’s neck instead. As sirens are heard in the background, Aiden slips away. At least we know that Padma was one of the good guys. Now I kinda feel bad about doubting her.
The masquerade ball is about to commence and Victoria and Conrad are getting dressed. Victoria has chosen a lovely black lace gown, straight from the wardrobe room of “Kiss of the Spider Woman”. Conrad wants some answers about this long-lost son of hers – he took the card out of the trash – and Victoria tells him that he doesn’t exist because she terminated the pregnancy. Victoria tells him that the father of the baby was one of her mother’s boyfriends and that she’ll give him proof but he has to promise never to discuss it again. The couple then descend the stairs to greet their guests, but only after Victoria give a speech about playing roles and leaving one’s true self at the door, hidden behind masks. I think she, well, most of them, know a thing or two about wearing masks and pretending to be someone you’re not. After announcing that the games can begin, she starts scurrying around, scanning the crowd in an effort to find that nonexistent son of hers with the single black rose.
Amanda meets up with Nolan, at the bar and thanks him for helping Jack. Declan says that he’d like a drink so Nolan walks off with him to enjoy some “champagne wishes and caviar dreams”, leaving Amanda alone with Jack. Jack says that all he’s looking for is a little justice. Daniel happens by and kisses Amanda. Conrad is on the phone with a donor, explaining that what he said about David Clarke meant nothing, that he’s not even a concern. He lashes out at Ashley for allowing things to go awry and she tells him that perhaps Evan isn’t all that great when it comes to being a campaign manager. Conrad tells her that she’s just making excuses, so she suggests that Conrad just fire her. Jack is listening to their entire conversation and later tells Ashley that they have some things in common, Grayson-wise. Ashley’s a little surprised to find out that Jack set up the whole Q&A about David Clarke, but Jack asks her if she’s with him on his feelings about Conrad.
Victoria has invited Sloane, a former girlfriend of Daniel’s, to the ball, hoping that she’ll catch Daniel’s eye, but Sloane shows Victoria the picture of Amanda and Daniel in the bar on her cell phone, along with a story announcing that the two are a real couple. Victoria stomps across the floor to confront Daniel, but he just hands her the two bullets that came with the photo and tells her there’s one for each of her faces. As if she isn’t having enough trouble controlling her kids, Charlotte punches out some girl for making jokes about (faux)Amanda.
Aiden arrives and tells Amanda everything that’s happened – how Padma and her father have been killed and that he killed Trask, just because he needed killing. Nolan comes over and, just from the looks on their faces, realizes that Padma is gone forever. He heads for the nearest exit, with Amanda following him. When she catches up to him, he breaks down in tears, telling Amanda that it’s his fault, it’s everyone’s fault for letting this happen. No doubt about it – he’s absolutely right. Amanda tries to get him to stay but Nolan tells her that he needs to handle this alone, after he promises her he’ll be okay.
Victoria is back to looking for the guy with the black rose on his lapel and then, finally, spots him. He walks in and out of the crowd, among the guests until Victoria loses sight of him. As he drifts out the door, he passes Amanda, and she smiles at him. Then Lady Grayson does something I didn’t think was possible. She loses it and faints, right there in the middle of the ballroom floor, taking down some curtains for dramatic effect. Yep, she can shoot Helen Crowley without giving it a second thought, but a possible close encounter with No. 1 Son gives her a case of the vapors. The next morning, her dear, doting husband tells her that she better get over it and come back with the proof he wanted about the boy who never was.
Aiden and Amanda are at his place and the two aren’t looking like lovebirds,anymore. Amanda tells him that she’s sorry about how things turned out and how all of it shouldn’t have happened the way it did, hoping that he’s not too jealous of Daniel. No, he’s not jealous, he’s, in his words, disgusted by the whole thing. He tells her that he’ll deal with the relationship between her and Daniel the best he can.
Nolan is back at his office and he’s trashing the place. Just then, NYPD Detective Durand walks in and starts asking him about Padma. The cops know that she died the day before and he’d like to know where Nolan was at the time. Nolan tells him that he has nothing to say, but the mess in his office does make him look a little suspicious. So, the cops finally show up to investigate something and the first suspect they come up with is Nolan. Have they never heard about what goes on during anything – parties, weddings, auctions, charity events, etc., etc., etc. – at Grayson Manor? Everybody who ever stepped foot in that house should be on their list of usual suspects.
Victoria is off to get that proof Conrad wants and she makes her way to an orphanage run by nuns.
She’s greeted by Sister Rebecca who assures her that her secret is safe, so safe, in fact, that even when the young man came to find out about his bio-mom, the nun refused to tell him anything. Victoria leaves, satisfied that no one will ever know the truth. The nun has another guest, though, who sits down next to her. It’s Amanda and she tells Sister Rebecca that she’s pregnant and has no one else to turn to.
Revenge will be back on April 28th. Until then,