Sally Langston is A. a crazy murderer who speaks directly to Jesus on her cell phone, B. the greatest political strategist to have ever run for elected office, or C. both. She controlled this episode, every character and all of their conversations.
Jake is speaking, maybe to himself, sounding a lot like Huck about what happens to people who serve at the mercy of B613. There are no families, no friends, nothing. No one cares about you and no one will notice if you’re when you’re gone.
Sally wants to confess that she broke a big Commandment, “Thou Shalt Not Kill”, not just to her minister, but to the world and she wants to make her confession during the debate with Fitz and Governor Reston. She has a lot of people worried, particularly Mellie and Cyrus who will be going to prison as her accomplices after the fact. When Olivia finally finds out what Sally did, she tells Cyrus that he could have come to her for help. Then she laughs and sobs, hysterical over the idea that the debate is going to look like murderer’s row. “They’re all murderers!” Cyrus’ answer is “Nobody’s perfect.” It was meant to cut the tension but Olivia doesn’t see it the same way. She tells Cyrus that he stole Fitz’s fresh start, his clean slate and he stole that from his own husband, too. Cyrus is begging her to stay on but she says that all she wants is to walk into the light, to feel the sun on her face and lets him know that he’s on his own.
Olivia heads to Jake’s department so that they can play fake boyfriend/girlfriend. She’s not interested in talking about what they really do, she just wants to act like a normal couple with normal jobs. He starts to tell her about the 1,500 reams of paper he sold at his fake job at Acme Limited. Quinn works there, too, answering fake phone calls from fake customers, with a very real bad attitude. Jake tells Olivia that the two of them could just run away, just say the word. Olivia says that she wants him to take advantage of her.
While Sally is praying for God’s forgiveness, and hoping that she’ll feel His love again, the White House is trying to figure out how to keep her from spilling her guts on national TV. Cyrus decides, what kind of harm could there be with one more murder, and asks Jake to kill Sally. Jake says that he’s not going to get involved in a petty White House squabble, but Cyrus sees it as an act of patriotism, not to mention political expediency. If Sally tells the world that everyone in the White House has sinned, really sinned, then the public will lose its’ faith in government, they’ll stop paying taxes, the world will fall off its’ axis, anarchy will reign and the zombie apocalypse will begin. Jake isn’t impressed in the least. He tells Cyrus that he’s just a small mouse on a wheel. He’d like to explain to Cyrus how the world really works but he doesn’t have the time and, besides, Cyrus wouldn’t understand, anyway.
Olivia and Cyrus go to see Sally, hoping to talk some sense into her, but she’s not feeling very sensible right now. She’s reaching epic meltdown levels, muttering stuff like “Time for the slaughter, piggy piggy. Yum, yum, crispy piggy, yum, yum.” She’s also reciting Bible verses faster than Jim Bakker on The 700 Club and comparing her situation to Jesus’ at Gethsemane. “God said nothing, showed no sign of love for his own Son.” She tells Olivia that she doesn’t hold it against her that the gladiator in chief is not a woman of God. But for Sally it’s more than just her beliefs that are at stake, “Without His love, I am worse than dead.” Olivia nods, almost as if she understands.
Olivia calls Fitz to tell him about Sally and that Cyrus and Mellie were complicit in the coverup. She also tells him that he has to throw the debate. This doesn’t sound like a woman who wants nothing to do with a Presidential campaign.
After warning one of her lovers, Olivia meets Jake at her apartment. He wants to talk this time, really talk, no about their fake lives, but about a real future together. He wants to stand in the sun with her but he knows it’s too late because Olivia has already chosen to stand with Fitz. She says she’s sorry but Jake brushes her off. “It’s okay. You’re doing your job and I should be doing mine.”
It’s the night of the debate and Sally is backstage, on her knees, praying for lightning to strike her or Fitz or Governor Reston. Who knows anymore. Olivia sees her and tells Fitz that Sally may be ready to blow. He snaps at her that he’s not about to throw the debate. Cyrus wonders to Olivia if he should call his lawyer. “Maybe”, she says. Jake has some insurance of his own for the debate – the Secret Service insider has a sniper rifle and he’s positioned up in the rafters of the auditorium. The debate itself, seems to be going fairly well until Sally starts looking like she’s on the verge of her confession. Fitz toys with her, willing to reel her in on which of them is the bigger sinner. She uses the opportunity to call him out on his failings, both personal and political. Fitz did what he was told to do – he gave Sally the debate. She’s still alive and nobody’s in handcuffs yet.
The nest morning, Leo is in Cyrus’ office doing a happy dance and gloating over Sally’s win. He tells Cyrus how he’s going to renovate the place and get rid of the buzzing sound. When he leaves, Cyrus begins to tear the place apart looking for the buzzing sound. He finds a microphone in a picture frame and realizes that he’s been bugged. During the debate, Jake had sent Quinn off on her first real B613 assignment – break into David Rosen’s safe and get whatever she could find out about Publius. She grabs a folder with transcripts of the secret tape recordings which identify James as Publius.
Olivia and Fitz are at the Oval Office and he says that he did what she wanted him to do. Olivia corrects him, reminding him that they said there would be no more lying. She says that there is no clean slate, no fresh start – just like there is no Vermont, this is what we do. She says this isn’t how we wanted it to be so let’s just be here.
James gets a text message, presumably from David, asking him to meet. Before he can leave, Cyrus stops him, holding the frames and the hidden microphone. He tells James that all of this is his fault. “I did this. I used you. You were right to lie to me.” James says, “You broke our family.” Cyrus says “I have to pay for my own mistakes. Do what you want: I’m so very sorry and I love you more than anything.” James then heads to the location of the meeting. When he sees David, who’s there with Vanessa Chandler and an assistant, he starts to tell him that he can’t go through with it – for about the 14th time. David says that he didn’t call for the meeting. They’ve all been set up. Then the two women are shot. Jake is standing there, with his gun trained at the two men and he fires a shot.
If only one of them is shot, just don’t let it be David – leave us one guy with a white hat and clean hands. We’d like to know what Mama Poe and Adnan are up to, too. Last week, they looked ready to pounce on someone- the question is who and how many. Lastly, all of the loose coats and bags of food are doing little to cover Kerry Washington’s growing baby bump. This season is being cut from 22 episodes to 18 to accommodate her pregnancy.