"Little Red Patch of Blood" is the 18th episode of Devious Butlers.
Joe has come to realize that, despite their surname, the Littles are hiding a big bad secret, while Josh informs him that he has stranger things chasing him through the proverbial forest. While black meets red, the rest of Fanon Drive prepares to celebrate Christmas, but the festive spirit is something to be desired within the homes of the rich and famous this holiday season. Ali turns stoic following an awkward encounter with the ladies while Liz deals with Eli's unscheduled return and Joanna, in spite of advising Rena to only look out for himself, begins to let her guilt get the better of her once more as she realizes that that's all she's been doing of late. With shadiness falling instead of snow, Ben finally starts to unveil Valentina's secrets, seeing the wolf behind the facade, while Josh discovers a separate beast within himself - along with what big, green eyes it has.
Focus on the face of Elizabeth Davis as she looks at herself in the mirror, proceeding to apply a rose-red gloss across her lips.
We then flash to years before and see Liz doing the same thing, but this time on the streets of New York City as she is pressed for time making it to a shooting for one of her "adult films". As such, Liz doesn't see the man coming towards her in the opposite direction, and the two bump into one another. She drops her compact mirror and lip gloss, but the man kneels down to help her pick it up. We see that it's none other than Elijah Davis.
Now in the present day again, this time inside of a limo, we see Eli as he rides home to confront his adulterous wife. He currently looks down at his phone at a picture of his now not-so-beloved, and we flash back again...
Eli looks up from his phone, in the past, and up at Liz who dresses in her dominatrix attire. She holds a whip in her hand, ready to seduce her now-fiancé, but he gives her a look of disgust, showing absolutely no interest. Liz frowns at this.
We now see Liz frowning as she looks in the mirror, back in the present, as Eli stands in the doorway. She turns to face him properly, and they look into one another's eyes with looks of resentment.
And one last time, we see a flash to the past where Liz and Eli look into one another's eyes, but this time happily. They stand at the altar, being joined together in holy matrimony. "Do you promise to love and be faithful to one another until the end of time?" the minister asks, and both Liz and Eli respond with an "I do".
Now, they look at one another, both heavily reconsidering the vows they shared on that joyous day those few years ago. "You're back," Liz greets, not even bothering to feign a smile this time. "Indeed I am," Eli responds. There's a moment of silence as the husband and wife look at one another, but Eli decides to break this. "So I heard you decided to fire Rena," he speaks, and Liz confirms that she did. "I figured there was no more use for him since you brought on Valentina." "I see." Liz begins to look around, so desperately wanting this awkward encounter to come to an end. She looks at the clock on the wall, and then back to her husband who is still standing there, staring at her. "Well," she finally says, "I'm supposed to be meeting with the girls, so..." "So you'd like for me to leave you alone?" "That'd be great." Eli now feigns a smile as he steps aside, allowing the doorway to be unblocked. "As you wish," he tells her, and Liz nods, now feigning a smile too. She picks up her purse from the bureau and proceeds to make her way to the doorway, picking up a wrapped box on the way with a label which reads "To: Ali". She stops, contemplating whether or not she should give her husband a kiss goodbye, but ultimately chooses not to. Eli watches as she leaves and, looking out the door to see that she has gone down the hall and far away from him, he takes his phone out of his pocket and proceeds to dial for Val. After a few moments, the maid picks up on the other line. "Yeah?" she asks, and Eli responds, "It's time we take this bitch down."
Ali can be seen approaching the Winters' mansion with a small gift in tow, neatly wrapped with a little bow, and when she makes it to the front door she awkwardly moves one hand from under it in order to ring the doorbell, not liking the fact that changing its position means more exposure for her starter of a baby bump. She still isn't large by any means, but certainly larger, and so as quick as she can she gets to using the small, wrapped box to cover herself some. Eventually, Rena answers Joanna's door, greeting Ms. Del Barrio with a smile. "Oh," Ali responds, "I wasn't aware Joanna had hired someone new. You're Ben's friend, right?" "Indeed I am," Rena says, shaking her hand, "Renato. Duarte. It's nice to meet you properly." Ali nods in response, then saying, "That's a lovely accent. Portuguese, right?" Rena grows shocked at this, for most people simply mistake him for Spanish, and, feeling somewhat delighted, he happily directs his employer's guest outside where the other local rich bitches are already partaking in poolside drinks. "Finally, the last to arrive," Joanna announces as Ali takes a seat, refusing the alcoholic beverages on offer, but Kathryn asks, "What about Rochelle?" "No, no, dear," Liz chimes in, "she wasn't invited, remember?" "I don't see why not," Kathryn complains. "Me neither!" exclaims Selena, who's sitting over by Silvia (who herself seems relieved by Rochelle's absence), and Ali is surprised by their presence. "She adds a lovely diversity to the group," the tranny adds, and Kathryn just grumbles to herself that if this freak got to join them then her new bestie should have been able to as well. "There was a lot of heatedness last time," Joanna reminds everybody, "I thought it best to avoid all that." "Fine," Kathryn nods, then mouthing to their hostess, "so ditch her," and gesturing Liz. In response, Liz just brushes some hair out of her face, discreetly flipping Kathryn the bird as she does so, and then she sips her cocktail. Ali then tells Silvia that she doesn't believe they've met, and so Silvia courteously introduces herself as Lindsay Green, a friend of Selena's. The two shake hands, and "Lindsay" tells Ali not to worry, for she just tagged along and isn't there to infringe on the girls' Secret Santa. "Remind me why we're doing this," Kathryn warrants, "Isn't it for poor people?" "Because it's fun," Joanna exclaims, "Now, none of us spent more than the limit, right? Five-hundred thousand?" The ladies shake their heads, and so the gift swapping begins. Ali is the first to give her small box to Joanna, happy that the way she's sitting still covers her belly somewhat, and Jo is thrilled to receive a brand new pair of designer driving gloves, jewels embedded in the leather cuff. Joanna gives Kathryn a new necklace (really just re-gifting the one Wilma wore because, well, ew), Kathryn gives Selena a new makeup set, Selena gives everyone a lecture on why wearing makeup is only conforming to the Westernized standards of beauty set out by the evil, evil patriarchy, plus she gives Liz a white T-shirt with the word, "This is what a FEMINIST looks like" printed on it - with glasses and a box of blue hairdye to match. "Gee," Liz utters blankly upon unwrapping it, "I'll treasure it always." "I thought you might," Selena beams, then saying, "I have to use the bathroom. Joanna, are yours gender-neutral?" "Um, yes?" Joanna responds, and Selena beams some more before heading inside. When she does, Liz sees fit to casually toss her new T-shirt into the pool, before revealing, "As it happens, I got a garment for Ali as well." With that, she hands the rich blonde a wrapped box which she gently places onto her lap and delicately begins to tear into. When she opens it up, she is shocked by what she sees - a great, ugly, yellow maternity dress. "Wh-what's this?" Ali utters, a little shaken, and Liz exclaims, "Maternity clothes, of course," as she giggles. "What?!" Ali exclaims, "How did you know?!" And everyone just falls silent. Liz's laughing ceases as she awkwardly states, "It... was a joke, dear. Because I said you were getting fat. I, uh... you're actually pregnant?" Ali is shaking now, staring out at them all; Silvia, who's been pretty quiet this whole time, seems to react the most, her face going from that of a pleasant onlooker to that of a deeply perturbed individual. "With the dead rapist's kid?" Kathryn chimes on, and Ali flinches. "That's quite enough," Joanna states, standing up in order to try and pull some focus from her distressed friend, "Rena! Why don't you come out here and serve everyone some more drinks?" Rena comes dashing out with a bottle in tow, topping off everyone's drinks, but there's still a very awkward air to everything, and Ali just sits there with her water in tow as though shell-shocked. "So," Selena adds upon her return from the bathroom, "Warraimiss?" Only she gets no reply. "Well," Rena says to his boss, "I should get going. Gotta meet the others at the coffee place." Taking this as some sort of cue, Silvia then pipes up, "I should be going too." "What, dear?" Kathryn asks jokingly, "Are you going to go hang out with the butlers?" Silvia doesn't respond and so Kathryn adds, "I'm sure whatever they're doing is going to be drastically different than how we choose to spend our time." She then applies her new Secret Santa gift while Silvia heads out.
We then cut to Silvia spying on a meeting of the butlers, her car (paid for courtesy of Selena) parked outside the cafe while, inside, they spend their time doing the exact same thing the rich bitches are doing: exchanging Secret Santa gifts. "Now none of us went over the limit, right?" Ben makes sure, "Ten dollars?" "Actually," says Rena, "My gifts are kinda pricy." "Gifts?" Joe questions, and Rena adds, "But they also didn't cost me a thing. So I figured there was no harm in getting one for each of you." With that, he reaches into his bag and pulls out three - poorly wrapped - bottles of wine, taken from Joanna's expensive collection. "Mrs. Winters said I could take what I wanted, so I figured..." "That wine would be an appropriate gift to give to me?" Joe questions, and Rena responds, "Oh." "More to the point," Josh adds, "I cannot believe you're still working for that woman." "To be fair," Rena adds (during this time Ben unwraps his bottle and murmurs, "Ooh, Italian oak"), "you didn't exactly give me a reason as to why I shouldn't work for her. And I can't just go without a job." "I'd be happy to loan you the money if it meant getting you out of that house," Josh states, only for Rena to exclaim, "Nuh uh, I got perks!" "Rena," Josh exclaims in turn, "did you not see me at the supermarket the other day?" "Yeah, and you seemed kinda nutso," the Portuguese butler admits, "I couldn't make out a thing you were screeching, not gonna lie." At this, Josh just makes an angered noise, and Rena goes, "See?" while Joe decides to chime in on Josh's behalf. "Rena, look," he says, "Joanna is... dangerous. And we don't wanna tell you why because that could be putting you in danger too. This woman has been known to go to great lengths in order to cover her tracks." "What do you mean?" Ben asks, deeply confused as a spectator, but Josh goes back in with, "We mean what we mean. She's dangerous and... you've just got to take our word for it, Rena. You have to quit that job." "Well I'm not going to!" Rena stands, only for Josh to then literally stand, staring his friend down and hissing, "Fine. Whatever. You can keep your damn wine." With that, he storms out of the cafe, leaving the three butlers sitting there awkwardly. Joe stares at the bottle of red wine which Ben has unwrapped and suddenly has flashes to the red blood stain he discovered on the attic floor of the Littles' mansion, then announcing to the others, "I should go talk to him. And you," he addresses Rena, "You'd do well to listen to us." Rena just gives Joe a petulant grimace as he too leaves the cafe, meaning only Rena and Ben are left sitting there. "So," Ben says awkwardly, taking out a gift he's wrapped and sliding it along the table for Rena to take, "this is for you." Rena just turns to him, no longer in the mood to unwrap anything, and Ben adds, "It's a tie." More silence. "It's red, l-like the wine." But no, the friendly gathering has been firmly extinguished. "Wine looks nice, by the way."
Outside, Joe manages to catch up to the angry Josh, and Silvia finds herself needing to duck out of view from within her nearby car. She opens the window a crack so that she can hear what they're saying, though, as Joe calls out his friend's name, saying he needs to talk to him. "I know, I freaked out," Josh nods, "I should just go home, cool off, figure out what I'm gonna wear to this party tonight--" but Joe tells him that that's not it. "Oh?" "You said," Joe begins, "that when you worked for the Littles they seemed kinda... shady. What did you mean by that?" "What?" Josh asks, barely able to remember, and Joe assures him, "It's important. Please." "Um," Josh goes on, actually pleased to get his mind off the whole Joanna situation, "Well, they tried super hard to fire me. Even set up a whole elaborate scheme so I couldn't do them for wrongful termination." "Really? Why's that?" Joe wonders, and Josh comes to recall, "I found this... weird piece of white cloth. It came off of the son's apron or something, while he was in the attic. It was all covered in red." "The attic?" Joe takes as key, only for Josh to say, "Yeah, and it really seemed to freak the daughter out that I had it. She snatched it off me real quick." "So Aliza was worried that you found some blood-spattered cloth in the attic, where Manny was working..." Joe murmurs, and Josh says that he isn't one hundred percent sure that it was blood - Joe is, though. "Why? What do you think it means?" the British butler wonders, only for Joe to tell him, "I don't know. Yet. Anyway, are you okay?" "Yeah," Josh assures, then suddenly remembering, "But you aren't." "Excuse me?" "There's something I've been meaning to tell you," Josh admits, "At the gala, Selena showed this security tape from the supermarket and... there was footage of you on there. From that morning." "So?" "You said you felt like you were being watched lately, right? Well, I think I know who's been stalkin' ya'." This comes as quite the shock to Joe, who needs to know: "Who?" And then Josh reveals that it's Selena's new friend, "Lindsay Green". While Joe grapples with what this means, Silvia suddenly hits the gas and speeds off down the street, out of sight. "Dammit," she says to herself as she continues to race away from her stalk-ee, "Today is just one piece of bad news after another."
Ali sits at her kitchen table, looking over the two sonogram pictures given to her at her last ultrasound. She has a blank expression on her face, then looking over at yellow maternity dress Liz bought her. Annoyed, she stands up, putting the two pictures down, and she grabs the dress and makes her way over the kitchen garbage can. She puts her foot down on the lever, popping the lid up, and just as she goes to shove the dress in the trash, a voice calls out to her: "Ali." She looks and sees Ben standing in the doorway, a confused look on his face as from the butler's point of view his boss is throwing out a perfectly nice dress. Ali takes her foot off of the little lever and proceeds to just toss the dress back onto the kitchen table and exit the room. Ben follows her, wondering what that's all about, but she turns to him, stating that she'd rather not talk about it. "Look, can you just start putting out the Christmas decorations?" she asks, acknowledging the naked Christmas tree lying in the living room. "And get Val to help you," Ms. Del Barrio exclaims, starting to make her way up the stairs to be alone, "I've noticed she's not being doing much cleaning lately, and I'm not just paying her to lounge around." She says this, wiping her finger across the railing and collecting some dust. Ben nods, allowing his boss to leave him, and he proceeds to take out his phone to call Val.
The maid's phone rings, but she immediately declines the call, as she's meeting up with Eli on his front porch. The two are currently looking over at Mr. Davis' phone, scrolling through the pictures of Rena and Liz that Val was able to obtain for him. "Sickening," he comments, and Val wonders what they're going to do now. "Show her the pictures and toss that whore out on her ass?" Eli looks up at Val, uncomfortable due to the fact that that's still his wife she's talking about. "Sorry." But Mr. Davis moves on. "No," he says, "Pictures aren't good enough. I need to catch her in the unholy act, for it would be far more humiliating for her that way." "So how do you propose we go about that?" Val wonders, and so Mr. Davis starts to think.
Back across the street though, Ben exits the Del Barrio mansion holding a set of lights to hang up outside when he looks out and sees Val and Eli talking. He's left confused by this, wondering what business Val could possibly have with Mr. Davis, but all he manages to see clearly is a devious grin appear across Valentina's face. The butler is both intrigued and worried.
That evening, Josh can be seen entering into Brad's office building on the latter's arm, for the lawyers are hosting an office party in honor of Christmas. The place has been decorated with lights and tinsel and such, and Mariah Carey can be heard playing in the background as a bunch of top legal minds get smashed on various alcoholic beverages. "Was it weird of you to bring me?" Josh finds himself asking his boyfriend, only for Brad to respond, "What? Of course not, you're my plus one." "Yeah but like a quarter of the people here have seen my penis," the British butler recalls (see "Goldilocks and the Four Butlers"), "it's embarrassing." "I've seen it too," Brad replies, "multiple times. Trust me, sweetie, you have nothing to be embarrassed about." The two of them share a kiss, and Josh expresses that he's just happy he could get the evening off - after all, Selena has no extra demands around Christmastime for she isn't big on celebrating the time where yet another white male was bore into the world. "At least she's stopped throwing all those allegations our way," Brad notes, and Josh says it's because she's actually got friends to hang out with now and so her time is less empty; "Although the wrong sort of friends, clearly. And I'm pretty sure the only reason Elizabeth Davis invited her to that Secret Santa thing was to piss of Kathryn Kappelletti." "How did your Secret Santa go?" Brad then asks, and Josh rolls his eyes, saying, "Horrible. I got into this big fight with Rena, I don't wanna go into it. And I never even got to give Joe that mug I got him." "You got him a mug?" Brad questions jokingly, "Maybe it's for the best you didn't give it to him." "We're all broke, okay?" Josh retorts, "You'll be lucky if you get anything more for Christmas than me under the tree with a bow on my head. A cheap bow at that." "Ooh, you could make underwear out of wrapping paper," the lawyer jibes, and Josh smiles as he says, "Done," then sharing another kiss with his beau. "Oh hey there Brad," one of the lawyers from the office - a rather attractive one - then interrupts, "I didn't know if you'd be coming tonight." "Of course I came," Brad assures, "I need to get hammered this Christmas just as much as the rest of y'all." They laugh, and Josh feels excluded, and so elbows Brad in the side to hint for him to introduce them. "Oh, how rude of me," Brad realizes, "Josh, this is my coworker Gregory Keating. Greg, this is my boyfriend, Josh." "Nice to meet you," Josh says, extending his hand, and Gregory shakes it while adding, "Boyfriend, eh? Well you're a lucky fella. Many a man have tried and failed to snag this one's heart over the years." "Come on now," Brad settles; more chuckles are shared while Josh feels a little awkward, and finally Gregory says to the both of them, "Enjoy the party," before going off to mingle. "He was kind of weird," Josh comments once he's out of earshot, and Brad says, "Yeah, you can see why I broke up with him." Josh's head whips round at bullet speed as he asks, "You used to date him?" "Yeah, for a while," Brad clarifies casually. "And you still work in the same office and see him everyday?" "Yeah," Brad says again, still casual. "Oh... well... okay," Josh nods awkwardly, then stating, "I think you were right, it is a good night to get hammered. If only I'd accepted Rena's wine."
More wine is on display at the Wik-E-Mart, on offer thanks to their Christmas deals, but Joe wills himself to go on past it and toward the security office.
"I don't know what to tell you, there are no more copies of the tape. That blue-haired chick or fella or whatever came in the other day and bought it from under us," the surveillance guard is then heard telling him. "How ethical," Joe rolls his eyes, "but the woman on that tape, she, uh, she stole my wallet, and I really need some evidence." "Well can you describe her? Maybe there's footage of her entering the store or something," the guard points out, and so Joe begins to give a physical description of Silvia, rather good at that sort of thing after his time as a detective. "Wait a second," the guard pipes up, "sounds like the broad who was hangin' with the blue-haired thing." Joe's eyes widen at this; "She was here with Selena when she bought the tape?" "Guess she didn't know what was on it, huh?" the guard laughs, then saying that she proceeded to make a purchase on her way out and if she used Joe's wallet to do it then they can probably prove it. "I can get them to pull out some receipts," the guard offers.
And next, we see Joe holding those receipts, for some last minute food that was purchased for the gala on Selena's behest. "Dylan Roads?" Joe questions upon reading it, "No, her name is Lindsay Green." And then, "Or is it?"
The next we see Joe, he is on the phone, walking out of Wik-E-Mart. "Hey, Huberd? Yeah, I know, I know, you gave me half an hour. But like I said, I only needed twenty minutes. Way I see it, you still owe me another ten."
Finally, we see Joe back at the police station, using their extensive databases and such. He is searching into purchases made by "Dylan Roads" and sees that, beyond some snack foods the other day, the only other thing she bought in recent history was... "A sniper rifle? (see "Beauty and the Tryst") What the hell? Who the hell is this woman?"
And, outside, Silvia is once again seen sitting in her car, listening in on Joe using the very same spy equipment that he used during his investigation into Jose's murder (it seems she was able to swipe it from his old bedroom in Joanna's house on her way out of Secret Santa). "Oh dear," she utters when she surmises that Joe has started to figure her out, "I guess that's my cue to leave Wikerly Hills. Again. If only for the time being. But still... there's one piece of business I gotta tend to first." And then the crazy woman stops talking to herself in order to put the equipment down and drive off once more, into the silent night.
Gone midnight, and Joe is still up, on his laptop, trying to find things out about either Dylan Roads or Lindsay Green. However, he finds nothing, and so comes to the conclusion that this mystery woman has been using aliases. "For God's sake," he moans, only for Aliza to pop her head into the dining room - which is the only place in the house where Joe can get a good outlet for himself - and say, "Y'all takin' the Lord's name in vain? 'Cause I was hopin' we could do some more of that tonight, to tells ya' the truth. 'Oh God, oh God,' and alla dat." "Hey Aliza," Joe greets blandly, in no mood, and so she asks, "What's up your butt?" as she goes to sit next to him, then adding, "You can go up mine if ya' want, I ain't fussy." "I'm just... trying and failing to dig stuff up on the woman who's stalking me, whose very suggestive words about my mother leads me to believe that she's the one who killed her." "Oh," Aliza nods, "heavy stuff then. Sounds like you could use a load off. Wanna dump it on me? You can choose duh place." She tries going in to kiss him, but he stops her, reminding her that she doesn't want her mother or brother to be able to hear them. "You right," Aliza nods, "wanna come with me up to the attic? Emphasis on 'come'." "Look, Aliza..." Joe then states, "what happened between us was fun." "Yeah it was, so let's go do it again," she begs, only for Joe to say, "But... I was sad... and in a dark place... and..." "Aw hells naw," she snaps, standing up. "Aw hells yes," he utters awkwardly, but she gets to her feet and slams his laptop shut in anger. "Heres I thought you been unresponsive these past few days 'cause you been plannin' some sorta special Kwanzaa surprise! But no you just get yo' jollies off and daz it? Well I don't play that game, tramp. You may wanna rethink what you're rethinkin'. I'll gi' you some time, I'm a reasonable woman. But tread very carefully if you plan on disrepectin' me. You do naht wanna know what this family does to people who wrong it." And then she storms out of the room, and Joe turns to her in both shock and suspicion, as though suddenly remembering that - that's right - the Littles are a mystery he's yet to solve as well. "It just never ends for you, does it?" Joanna's voice bleeds, but he just responds with, "Bite me," to the air. Then he begins to think about the Littles situation, and gets a devious idea.
In the early hours of the morning, Joe can be seen laying out a bunch of Manny's Art & Craft materials out on the kitchen table, and Manny almost screams in shock when he walks in to discover it. "What do you think you're doing?!" he booms, and Joe responds, "Oh. Well, you see, I'm but a lowly houseboy, so I can't afford much. Instead, I thought I'd make my friends their Christmas presents this year. What do you think? I could do you a macaroni necklace or something? Or, would you prefer dried corn? You know, for Kwanzaa?" Manny doesn't know how to respond, and Joe just says as he stares down at all the material, "I'm not very artsy though, if I'm honest. So whatever I make will probably be abstract." As he says this, he takes a pair of scissors and cuts off a strip of white cloth. "What's that gonna be?" Manny wonders, not liking to see art desecrated, and Joe, pouring various paints into a pallet, says, "I don't know. Yet." And then he dips the white cloth into the red paint, lifting it up and asking his employer's son, "What do you think it is?" Manny just stares at it with his eyes wide, and then he begins to shake. This makes Joe smile, and all the black boy can bring himself to utter us, "Put all this away by the time I get back." He then dashes out of the kitchen, to Joe's satisfaction, before he tosses the red-splattered cloth into the trashcan.
Manny, meanwhile, approaches his mother in her downstairs bedroom. "Mama! Mama! Wake up!" he cries, and she rolls over annoyed, pointing out that it "ain't" even 10:00 A.M. yet. "I know, Mama, I know, but listen," Manny begs, helping his mother sit up, because of course she can't by herself, "I think we have another problem." Upon hearing this, Rochelle grows more intent on listening.
Ben finishes putting out the Christmas decorations in the Del Barrio mansion, hanging the wreath on the front door to symbolize the completion. Satisfied with his work, he proceeds to look at the clock and see that, right on the dot, it's time for his break. Looking around, he sees that nobody else appears to be home, and so he gets an idea...
We next see Ben at the dining room table with his laptop, and he begins typing into the search engine "Valentina Cort--" and then a voice calls out: "What the hell are you doing?!" Ben turns around and sees Valentina standing behind him, having witnessed the butler start typing her name into his keyboard. Ben immediately slams his laptop shut, trying to brush it off as nothing, but the maid marches over and opens it back up and, to Ben's dismay, there being a lack of password-protection confirms Val's suspicions. "Really?" she asks, and Ben doesn't quite know what to say. "What exactly were you expecting to find out, hmm?" At first Ben doesn't know whether he should come clean or deny everything, but finally he takes a stand (literally, he stands up). "I saw you talking to Elijah Davis," he admits, then wondering why. But Val simply crosses her arms. "Now how is that any of your business?" "Well I just don't see why you'd have any business with him." And so Val decides to tell the truth, well, some of the truth. "If you must know, I'm working there part-time as their maid. Since they fired Rena, they've needed someone to clean up their dirty laundry, and so I thought why not? The pay is decent enough, as are the hours, and the whole reason I came over here from France was because I wanted to work." "Oh," is all Ben can really reply, understanding that that's a pretty reasonable and logical explanation. "Yeah, so unless that's a crime, can you maybe not? I'm pretty sure there's some risqué pictures from the early 2000s that I'd rather you and Ms. Del Barrio not set your eyes on." Ben nods, pretty embarrassed now, and apologizes. Val simply glares at him, starting to walk away... but then another thought crosses the butler's mind. "Wait," he calls out, "France?" Val turns to him, not getting the significance of this. "On your résumé you said you came here from Spain..." It's then that Val remembers. "Oh," she replies, "yeah, right... That's what I meant." Ben nods, though his suspicions are rising yet again. "So are we done here?" the maid asks, and Ben confirms that they are. Val continues to walk away, this time uninterrupted, and Ben simply watches, knowing that there most certainly is something devious about this maid.
"More," Joanna exclaims after Rena finishes pouring some red wine into her extremely large glass in the shape of a snowman. Rena does as told, tucking in the tie that Ben got him to make sure nothing splashes onto it, but Mrs. Winters still isn't content. "More," she says again, which he does. And then more... and then more... and then a little more until it's filled right up to the rim. "Perfect," she exclaims, downing it all in one massive gulp, to Rena's complete and utter shock. "Do you not have a gag reflex?!" he asks, to which she promptly shakes her head no. Rena doesn't bother asking anything further, instead pouring himself a glass, though not nearly as big or as full as his boss', and he downs it too. Joanna sees that that little bit is already giving him a buzz, and she calls him out on it as pathetic. The butler slouches down in the couch though, not laughing at Mrs. Winters' obvious joke, and so she puts her glass down. "What's wrong, sweetheart?" she asks, and so Rena confesses. "It's already bad enough that Josh and Joe are still mad at me," something that makes Joanna look away in guilt, "but now I think Eli is about to find out about me and Liz." "What makes you think that?" And so Rena explains how Liz called to tell him that Mr. Davis has returned home again, after already establishing Val as their new maid to spy on the two of them. "I see." "And now I feel like I'm back to walking on eggshells, and I don't think Eli is gonna back down this time." Joanna nods, ushering that Rena hand her the wine bottle, which he does. Upon taking a big gulp of it, she decides to give her two cents: "I think you should end it." "Come again?" "I think you should break up with Liz." Rena gives his boss an odd look, and so she decides to elaborate further. "Obviously Liz is a... dear friend of mine," she says with some hesitation, "but she's clearly holding you back. You once told me you wanted to be an actor, correct? And how Eli sabotaged all your auditions when he last suspected you were screwing his wife?" Rena nods, confirming this. "Well what are you still doing with her? Do expect this to work out for you in the long-term, this relationship you have with Liz? Does it mean something more to you, or are you just in it for the sex... or whatever the hell that kinky stuff is that you two are up to." Rena takes in all of this, having not really given it much thought ever since he and Liz began their little routine. "It just seems to be that all she's doing is holding you back from what you're destined to do, and unless you truly love her then I see no reason as to why you would keep this going. You should be looking out for yourself because one thing I've learned in life is that the only person who will put you first is you." It's now Rena who reaches for the wine bottle, downing a massive gulp of it. He's starting to really put in some thought, and Joanna can see that he's hurting from it. She puts her arm around him, nudging him in closer to her. "All I can tell you to do though, is for you to do what you think is right. But whatever the outcome is, I'm here for you." Rena looks up at his employer, feeling a sort of comfort he really hasn't been feeling from anyone else as of the late. A true friend, he's starting to see in her. "Thank you," he utters, and the two hug.
Brad gets up from his desk in order to exit his office, only for there to be a knock at the door at that exact time. When he opens it, he is surprised to see Josh there, though greets him with a kiss, and Josh apologizes, wondering if he's interrupting anything. "Not really," Brad supposes, and Josh explains that the last time he tried to have lunch with Brad at the office it kind of tanked but, now that Selena's calmed things down in regard to his workload, he figured he'd give it another shot. "Would you like to go out somewhere?" "Actually..." Brad then utters. "Oh," Josh utters in turn, "you're too busy again?" "Well--" "Hey, Brad, we still on for lunch?" comes a familiar voice, and Josh turns around to see Greg approaching the office. "Oh hey," Greg says upon arriving in the doorway, "Josh, was it?" "Yes... it was," Josh replies awkwardly, and then, "You two... have lunch plans?" "Yeah, well, after the party we got to talking and figured we'd take some time to catch up, is all," Brad explains to his boyfriend. "Ah," Josh nods, clearly hurt by this, "sounds... fun. Me, I don't have any lunch plans, which is... why I... came here... so yeah. I guess I should... go? Maybe grab a hotdog or... ...." he lingers the word for a while, and finally Gregory says, "Why don't you come with us?" "Really?" Josh asks, turning to Brad as though asking for permission, and Brad just appears reluctant for he knows how awkward this is going to be, but he can't exactly say "no", and so: "Sure. Come along." "Right," Josh breathes, "I shall." There's a small silence, and it's awkward already.
We cut to the three of them sitting at a cafe bar near the office, all eating with relative quietness. The awkwardness hasn't lifted. "So Brad," Greg starts, "Kira in accounting said you landed a big deposition last week. Bravo." "Oh, it's no big deal," Brad assures. "Sounded like one," Greg assures in turn, while Josh asks, "Did it?" before murmuring, "Never told me," as he shoves some food into his mouth. "What's that, sweetie?" Brad asks his boyfriend, but Josh chokes, "Nothing. So, yeah, how come you had to hear it from Kira, eh Greg?" "Well, Brad and I don't really see each other that much," Greg tells him. "Oh?" "We work on different floors," Brad explains. "Ah," Josh nods, "good." "Good?" Brad questions. "Good that you can go so long without seeing each other and then... have so much to catch up on," the butler excuses, "I mean, do you go out to lunch here a lot?" "Sometimes," Greg shrugs. "Awesome," Josh bites down on something again, mumbling, "really super bloody awesome." "And what about you, Greg, what have you been up to?" Brad decides to ask his friend, ignoring Josh's weird behavior, and Greg reveals, "Not much. I've been hitting the gym a lot lately." "Ah, it did look as though you'd been working out," Brad nods, and Josh furrows his brow at this, not liking his boyfriend noticing such things. "Yeah," Greg agrees, then taking out his phone and showing Brad a topless pic of himself - taken in the mirror at the gym, him bearing his six pack for all to see. "Wow, impressive," Brad compliments. "Yeah, camera phones are great," Josh nods almost aggressively, "so convenient for taking photos and such. Like this one," he takes out his own, "we took this last week, on a date." The picture he shows is a selfie of himself and Brad, taken outside the front of a bistro on a starry night. "Remember that night, honey?" Josh asks. "'Honey'?" Brad questions, not really used to that word. "How we were gazing up at the stars and... talked about how much we love one another." "I don't remember being in a scene from an Elijah Davis film, no," Brad jokes, and Josh purveys a massive (kind of obviously fake) laugh that garners the attention of some of the other people in the restaurant. "So how long have you two been dating?" Greg questions, and before Brad can reply, Josh jumps in with, "Coming up to four months now. We're about to celebrate our quadri-mothi-versary, in fact." "We are?" Brad asks, to which Josh exclaims, "Of course we are." "You can't even afford me a Christmas present," Brad reminds him, and Josh forces another chuckle, turning to Greg as he states firmly, "I'm of course getting him a Christmas present, because, like I said, we are very deeply in love. So when you said we were 'dating' just now, you were wrong. We're in a committed relationship. Isn't that right, honey?" "Yes, but--" "Honestly, Greg, you went to law school, you should be better at retaining facts." "Um..." Greg utters, while Josh utters his boyfriend's name. "Kiss me," Josh orders, turning to Brad. "What?" Brad questions. "Kiss me," Josh orders again. "We're in the middle of lunch," Brad points out, but Josh says, "So?" and, feeling kind of awkward at how much he's being pushed, Brad leans over and gives his boyfriend a peck on the lips... only for Josh to try and turn this into a full-blown make out sesh right there in public, shoving his tongue down the lawyer's throat. Finally, Brad is forced to push him off of him, and Greg, just sort of sitting there, ends up saying, "You know what? I should go. Got a lot of work to do back at the office, so..." "Yeah, you're kind of third wheeling it, not gonna lie," Josh tells him. "Josh!" Brad yells. "What?" And then, "Bye," as Greg puts forward his part of the bill and leaves. "Bye, Felicia," Josh waves as he goes, and Brad looks indignant at his boyfriend. "What?" Josh asks, "He is pretty Felicia, he barely even tipped." But Brad just says, "I should be getting back too," before getting up, paying for both his and Josh's meal, and leaving the British butler alone. It is then that he sighs and begins to notice the song "Fairytale of New York" playing in the background, and the words, "♪ You scumbag, you maggot, you cheap lousy faggot ♪ / ♪ Happy Christmas, you arse, I pray God it's our last ♪" have never wrung more true.
"I just need a way to break into that house," Silvia is heard saying to herself as she hides on Fanon Drive, but of course we don't see which house she's referring to. All we know is that it's not the Winters' mansion, which is situated clearly behind her. Inside, Joanna finishes yet another glass of wine from her specialized glass, proceeding to put it down and say, "I need a night out." She then turns to Rena and asks, "You feel like coming out on the sesh?" He just groans in response, already too sloshed from all her wine he drank, murmuring something about how strong those two Italian oaks were that Joe and Josh never took home with them. Joanna rolls her eyes at this, telling him, "Very well. I probably shouldn't go partying with my butler anyway. But I feel like getting drunk - like tequila slammers level drunk - but not in my own home for once. And not alone because that's sad. I guess I'll just have to call one of the girls."
Ali can be seen sitting in the Del Barrio mansion when her cell phone begins to ring. Briefly, she glances over, but doesn't even really register who's calling, and soon she gets back to staring out her bedroom window, stoic.
Liz's cell phone is then heard ringing, but she's in the middle of having a very awkward meal with her husband, sitting across from him and not saying a word. He asks her who it is, and she says it's Joanna, and so he requests that he call her back later. As such, Liz screens the call.
Kathryn's cell phone then rings, and she picks it up and asks herself, "Joanna? Do I even like her?" before deciding nope and just ceasing the call.
"Dammit," Joanna says to herself, slamming her phone down as she remains in her mansion. "What am I gonna do?" she asks Rena, but he's passed out so he's no help, and she sighs. She then asks herself, "Who the hell am I gonna call?"
"This is gonna be so fun!" Selena exclaims a few hours later as she remains in line with Joanna, waiting to get into one of Wikerly Hills' local night clubs. "Clubbing instead of Christmas. As if it was really a miracle when that poor woman gave birth to the rape baby of God. Religion is so barbaric. Why are you dressed like that though?" she asks of Joanna's skimpy clothing and glittery makeup, and Mrs. Winters replies, "Because I'm trying to look like I'm younger than thirty." "Won't they know you're not from your ID?" Selena wonders, only for Joanna to wonder in turn, "Do you really think I'm not rich enough to have a fake drawn up?" "Whatever," Selena replies, "just make sure you allow the male gazes that come your way to empower you, as opposed to overpower it. There's a fine line there." "A fine line unlike your unibrow, He-she" Joanna mutters, annoyed, and Selena turns and asks her, "What?" to which Joanna replies, "Nothing, dear. Probably just the voices in your head." "Ohhh," Selena nods in response as the two of them move further up the line, the tranny in front. The music from inside can be heard blaring out into the night, along with the noise of people screaming and having a grand old time. "I hope those screams are of elation and not because of sexual assault," Selena breathes, "Make sure to keep an eye on your drink the entire time." "Oh don't worry," Joanna assures, "my drinks aren't being put down until they're empty. Though I don't plan on holding each one long enough to actually see them, so..." Finally, they make it to the front of the line, right after the bouncer lets through two college girls who are clearly both drunk off their asses. As Selena goes up to him, handing him her passport as ID, he takes one look at it, and one look at her, and snarls in disgust before saying, "You need to sober up, sir." "I... Excuse me, wh-what?" she utters, her lip quivering. "Get out of line!" the bouncer then barks, and Selena, sober as a priest, tries to kick up a fuss, only for a preliminary bouncer to intimidate her into moving to one side. Seeing this, Joanna takes some money from her wallet, and she's faced with a choice - either she can bribe the bouncer to let both she and her "friend" inside... or she can hand the money to Selena and say, "Here, sweetie, go buy yourself some vodka, sneak it into a McDonald's, have a grand old time." "D-Donald?" Selena utters, triggered, while Joanna hands the bouncer a driver's license and is let in immediately, with a smile no less. Joanna didn't want to come alone, but she's since decided that Selena is worse company than none at all, and so she just finds the bar at the club and orders her first of many drinks of the night.
Hours later again and Joanna is seen stumbling into the nightclub bathroom, drunk as a skunk and hiking down her tiny, tiny dress as it threatens to expose more than she intends to be seen. After washing some of her boob glitter off her hands in the sink, she decides to shake herself dry, but all that shaking enhances her dizziness and she finds the need to sit down for a moment. In her current state, the floor seems as good a place as any, and so she parks herself down in the corner of the lav, needing a moment to take a deep breath and ignore the fact that some form of stickiness is touching her cute outfit. From there, she just sort of flits between being zoned in and zoned out as she stares off into space, luckily alone for no one particularly wants to use this ladies' room, and then she ends up popping her clutch onto her lap and taking her cell phone from therein. She begins to scroll through old pictures, and soon comes across a video of herself, Josh and Juan, taken on the day that they were all mixing pills and alcohol together on her kitchen floor (see "Buffing the Damp Mire Layer"). She smiles, but it's a sad smile, and then tears begin to well up in her eyes. "No," she then slurs to herself, almost in a child's voice, "don't drink and dial. Nooo. Stoooop." Despite what she's saying, she does it anyway, and before long the phone is ringing. After a while, it stops, and Josh's voice is heard on the other end. She's reached his voicemail, and just as he finishes telling her to leave a message - followed by the usual beep - Joanna begins to speak: "Josh, hi. Hiiiiiiii, Josh. Yah. So. I'm kinda drunk right now, which I'm sure doesn't really shock you all that very much to be honest, because I'm a bit of a drinker. I likes ma' wine, we know. But tonight I've had... a lot else more. I'm all by myself and I probably shouldn't be but I'm used to it at least I was used to it until I had you and you were my friend, you know? A real awesome great friend and I loved you so much and I still love you lots, Josh. Really. Rena's great but you could have seshed with me, baby, you could party with the best of them, hashtag sesh never ends, you could... Um, so hey. I'm calling because... I don't really know why. Honestly I'm surprised you haven't, like, blocked my number, or, changed numbers, or... I don't know, something else rude. It's been like nearly half a year since I screamed at you that you murdered my husband you'da thought you, like, at least un-follow me on Twitter or summit. At DeviousPeep going strong, baby! But am I the real Peep even? Not that you were online much in prison. Oops! That was my fault, I guess. Well I don't guess, I know, 'cause I, like, did it. I didn't want to. But the police were gonna come and they were gonna find Matthew's body all chopped up in the freezer and it wouldn't have been long before they slapped cuffs on me and dragged me out of there and I know it was very selfish but I did what I felt I had to do. To be free. To remain free. I can't go back to being a prisoner; I was all alone down there and it was awful and then don't even ask me about the mud huts and Oh God - there's a guy I don't believe in, haha. But, um, yeah, I wasn't really free. I'm not really free, I'm... sitting on the gross bathroom of some gross club that I only got into using a fake ID for my already fake ID, all drunk and pathetic like a college girl or... I don't know, is that what they're like? I never went to college, or high school, or even middle school, to be honest. Don't tell anyone, it's a secret, shhhhhhhh! I was otherwise engaged, before I became this... natural disaster, just... blowing through life, destroying everything I touch that's good. And now you have to work for Selena which is probably even worse than the whole prison thing and maybe even Matthew if it weren't for the other thing and hey don't I get a thank you for avenging you there? Except no, bad Jo, I shouldn't think like that, 'cause that's what I do. S'what I do. I justify and I rationalize and I do all naughty things and tell myself they're okay when they're not. What I did to you... wasn't okay. You did nothing. Nothing to deserve it. Nothing to deserve what I inflicted. You hadn't wronged me, or anyone, and I wanted to protect you, but I put myself first and... and... Earlier today, I gave Rena this advice and I basically told him that he had to protect himself at all costs no matter what damage it did to others, and then I realized... that's all I've been doing." She's full-on crying by this point, the drunken tears just streaming down her face, along with the copious amounts of mascara she put on for tonight. "I thought that the only person who could put you first is you and the only person you should put first is you but... I was wrong. I am wrong. You were my friend, Josh. You were my friend and I betrayed you. And I just wanna say... that I'm really, really, really..." And then her phone dies, cutting the message off and making it so that Josh will never receive it. "...sorry." Upon realizing that her former butler will never hear her apology, her crying grows more profuse, and she just continues to roar there, alone, on the nightclub bathroom floor.
Selena sits groaning on her couch, an empty vodka bottle on the table surrounded by equally empty cartons of what used to contain fries and Chicken McNuggets. "Selena...?" Josh utters as he quietly enters the room, at which she insists, "Stop yelling at me, daddy!" The butler just takes a step back at this, not really wanting to have to deal with his employer in her dazed, hungover state, but he soon feels obligated to ask what happened last night. "I'll - tell - you - what - happened!" she breathes, turning to him before belching. "Bouncers are sexist and transphobic and they make stuff up about you not being sober so you don't get into their clubs," she weeps. "Seems like they might've been right..." Josh points out, seeing that empty bottle of vodka, but Selena tells him, "That was after! Joanna told me to go g--" "Joanna?" Josh questions, taken a tad off guard, and Selena just says, "Yah. She told me to go get some vodka, only how was I supposed to know vodka was alcohol? It looks like water, and so I slipped it into my McCoke and just kept on slurping." "Right," Josh replies, "sounds like you had fun." "More fun than I woulda had in that club," the groggy SJW continues, "That bouncer lookin' at me like I was a damn wolf, all, what big eyes you have." "I'm sure that's what he said," Josh nods, and then the doorbell rings and Selena moans. "Too loud... so loud... I'm sorry daddy you were right... Rape culture... rape culture..." And then she just keeps muttering "rape culture" until she's fallen back asleep on the couch, Josh having to calm his flinching in order to go answer the door. To his joy and surprise, Brad is on the other side, and the lawyer apologizes for bothering his boyfriend while he's working. "It's okay, really," Josh assures, pausing for the sound of Selena's snores to become heard, and Brad says, "Ah. Well, I wanted to come over and maybe talk... about yesterday." "Yeah," Josh sighs, "I figured. So... Greg was pretty awkward, huh?" "Josh," Brad states sternly, and the British butler exclaims, "I know! Okay? I was a total mess." "What was that?" "I don't know," Josh admits, "I just... I was 'jealous', okay?" "Of me and Greg?" "Yes! The guy was like super fit and you work in the same building as him, it just got me a little creeped out. Not to mention you go out to lunch with him, like--" "Every so often?" Brad finishes, and Josh exclaims, "Exactly." "And you think, what, because I'm friendly with an ex that we're just gonna end up sleeping together? Oh, because all us gay men are such sluts, right? We just can't keep it in our pants." "No--" "And it never occurred to you that I'm only friendly with him because I have to be, because it would be too awkward and too petty to not be." "But you never told me about him," Josh points out. "Because I never had a reason to. Greg is irrelevant, okay? We went on a few dates, it led nowhere, now we're just coworkers who get along. Alright? You're my first real relationship, remember?" Being reminded of this makes Josh smile, and he says that he's sorry. "It's okay," Brad decides, "just as long as you know that you never have any reason to be jealous when it comes to us. Because I love you. 'Honey'. Only you." "I love you too," Josh replies, and Brad tells him, "I know." After a pause, the two then share a kiss, and Brad tells him that those are much better when he's not trying to eat his face in public. Josh laughs, but points out that the romance of the moment is somewhat ruined by Selena's snores - not to mention the talking in her sleep - "McDonald Trump, no! You can't make a wall out of nuggets!" - and so Josh goes to find a way to make it more romantic. He goes to a nearby drawer and pulls out some mistletoe, explaining that he wanted to hang it up but then got barked at that it encourages men to kiss women when they're unwilling. He, however, thinks it's a cute tradition, and he holds it up between himself and Brad in order for more kisses to take place. "We're both new to the whole relationship thing," Josh then continues, "I, uh, guess I forget that we're both still finding our footing. And I'm sorry that I got jealous." "Eh, don't be," Brad smiles, "It was actually kinda cute. Flattering, even." Josh smiles, then says, "The whole 'no jealousy' thing is a two-way street, by the way. You never have to worry about me and another guy, ever. If there's one thing I learned while on my insane anti-Greg rampage, it's that I'm in this for the long haul, and I never wanna lose you." "I never wanna lose you either," Brad assures. "And you won't," Josh states, kissing him once more, before joking, "Of course, I don't work around any of my exes." Brad laughs, saying that it wouldn't matter if he did, for he isn't the jealous type. Another ring of the doorbell, and Selena screams, now awake and beginning to slump up the stairs to go blog about how offended she is over the night previous - which we know thanks to her continued mutterings. Josh ignores this, simply replying to his boyfriend with, "Is that so?" before going to answer the door. "Hey, Josh," emits the unexpected presence of Juan Castillo, with Josh just stands there, wide-eyed. "Ju-Juan?" he murmurs, while Juan smiles at the doorstep and states, "Merry Christmas." He then notices Brad standing behind the butler and so he asks, "Who's this? Your new boss?" Nothing in the way of a response, just a maintained stunned silence.
Down the street, meanwhile, outside of the Winters' mansion, Rena has just finished hanging up the Christmas lights, something he's quite bitter about due to the fact that it made him chip a nail. Alas though, he plugs the cord into the outside outlet and takes a step back, admiring the beautiful sight before him. He then turns, however, hearing a car drive down Fanon Drive - it's Liz's, as she pulls into her driveway. "It's now or never," the butler says to himself, and he proceeds to make his way down the street to speak to his Mistress.
Over at the Del Barrio mansion though, we see Val drinking a glass of eggnog where she happens to look out the window and see the Portuguese butler making his way over to the Davis house. Her eyes widen, and immediately she whips out her phone and texts Eli for him to get home immediately from wherever he's at.
We see Eli, in a limo with his agents, as he receives the text. "Bill," he says turning to one of them, "tell Maria Solano we're gonna have to reschedule." And he proceeds to instruct the driver to take him home.
Liz kicks off her heels, ready to sit down and catch up on her soaps when the doorbell rings. "Jesus Christ..." she utters to herself, unable to be arsed to get the door herself. "It's open," she yells, and Rena enters the house. Liz is surprised, wondering what the hell he's doing here since it's such a risk right now for them to be together. "We need to talk," he tells her.
Cut back to Eli sitting in his limo, it being stuck in traffic. "For God's sake..." he exclaims.
"Do you love me?" the Portuguese butler asks Liz. "What?" "Do you love me?" "Rena..." "Because I've been doing some thinking lately, and I'm coming to the conclusion that if we're not in this for the long haul then why are we going to all the trouble?" Liz is stunned.
Val stands outside of the Davis house, though a little ways away so Rena and Liz don't see her through the window. "Come on, Mr. Davis," she mutters to herself.
"I don't know what to say," Liz admits, "I mean, yeah, sure, I care about you... sorta." "But you don't wanna be with me." "Rena--" "Where's the lie?" And so, Mrs. Davis goes silent. "Look, don't get me wrong, I never entered into this expecting romance. I did it for the pain... for the pleasure. But with that pain and pleasure also comes a cost, that cost being my career that your husband has destroyed. And he's about to do a hell of a lot worse if he catches us." "So now you want to break up." "Well don't you think that'd be best for the both of us?" Liz takes a seat on the sofa, letting out hysteric laugh. She turns to the butler, smirking. "You know, Rena? I've spent so many years unhappy. I married a man that it turns out I don't really love; I'm a D-list actor, who's more known as the redheaded wife of 'that black guy from Little Sicily'... My family won't speak to me; my friends only tolerate me; my employees always despise me... Then you came into my life. Do I love you? Not in the traditional sense... but you made me happy, Rena. Our sessions; me inflicting pain on you, and even you getting off on it. It's the best thing I've had going for myself in such a long time." Rena is starting to tear up. "But is the price we've been paying really worth it?" Liz looks away, trying to prevent herself from tearing up (mainly because she isn't wearing waterproof mascara). "I suppose not..."
"Finally," Eli utters, the traffic he's stuck in starting to move again. He texts Val that he'll be there shortly.
The maid receives this text, a grin appearing across her face.
Rena starts to make his way to the door, ready to exit Liz's life forever, but she reaches out for his hand. "Wait," she says, pulling him back. "Please," she utters, "one last time... for old time's sake." And Rena turns to her...
Cut to Rena and Liz racing to the BDSM closet, Liz shoving Rena to the ground and demanding that he start removing his clothes. "Yes, Mistress!" he exclaims, to her delight.
We see Eli's car pull into the driveway of the Davis house, and Val meets him at the door. "Finally," she echoes, rather annoyed, "Sure took you long enough." But Eli doesn't bother explaining himself. "Are they still here?" he eagerly asks, and Val confirms so.
We see Liz back in her dominatrix attire, walking around Rena, who who is currently suspended in the air by his arms and legs, in the total nude. Every now and then Liz will whip him with her switch, and he'll yelp in pain.
Eli and Val enter the kitchen of the Davis house and see that Rena and Liz are nowhere in sight. Val then smirks. "The closet," she exclaims, and Eli looks at her in shock.
Whip. "Yes, Mistress!" Whip. "More, Mistress!" The camera zooms out and we now see Rena is locked into chastity, as well as to the same wires that he was stuck to during their first session... "session" (see "How to Run Away with Chauffeurs"). Liz then approaches a box that contains numerous buttons, and she presses one, sending bolts of electricity into the servant. He screams at the top of his lungs, enjoying every minute. "You want more of this, you little bitch?!" Liz asks of him, but he shakes his head no. Due to being ballgagged, that's all he is able to do, shake his head no. Liz believes this to be part of the show though, and so she presses the button again, and again Rena screams. But then a voice calls out: "Liz?..." And the ginger dominatrix turns around; standing before her is none other than Eli, horrified by the sight he is seeing. "Eli," she utters, utterly shocked to see that he has discovered the BDSM closet, and then embarrassed that he is seeing her in her dominatrix outfit, but lastly frightened about what is to happen now. Val shows up behind Mr. Davis, arms crossed with the most devious of a grin on her face. Liz looks at the maid, and then back at her husband, then to her former butler, and then back at her husband again. "I can explain...?" she tries, but Eli shakes his head. "We're done here." And he proceeds to walk away. "Eli, please!" Liz tries, running after her husband, totally forgetting that Rena is still suspended and restrained. It's just the two servants now, and Val looks up at her former co-worker. Despite not being able to speak, you can see the pleads in his eyes for Val to let him down, but she simply smirks, walking away herself. The first part of avenging her dear sister is complete.
"Eli, please!" Liz tries, but Mr. Davis ignores his sobbing wife, getting into a car and driving off. Liz proceeds to collapse in the yard, bawling her absolute eyes out. Ben sees this from out the window of the Del Barrio mansion; he's shocked, never having seen someone like Elizabeth Davis in such a state of vulnerability, but instantly he realizes that Val most likely has something to do with this... and that Val is also out of the house. From there, the butler decides to take this opportunity to run up the stairs of the Del Barrio mansion and to his co-worker's bedroom. Upon entering, he instantly gets to work, starting to tear apart the room piece-by-piece to find out whatever shady secrets she is hiding. He looks in the nightstands, under the mattress, in the closet, in the bureau drawers... and then he gets to one drawer in particular. It's locked. Ben sighs, for he knows that whatever Valentina is hiding must be in that drawer, but what is he to do to find out what? He starts to look around some more, his eyes wandering the room, and then he sees something shining on the ledge of the door. Approaching it, he eventually realizes it's a key. "Jackpot." He takes the key and returns to the locked drawer; it's a perfect fit, and soon enough it's unlocked. Rummaging around a bit, Ben finds some of his co-worker's more personal possessions, such as a vibrator, some old love letters from school, the risqué pictures Val warned him about (which he takes one of), and lastly a singular photo... of Valentina and Justine. The butler's eyes widen in horror, and he flips the picture over and sees a note written on the back: "For sister of me from last, how you say, vacation. -xoxo Justine." The butler is forced to take a seat on the bed, his heart racing in fear at what this could mean. What does Valentina know? Does she believe the story about how Justine died? Does she think Ben is somehow connected? But of course the butler doesn't say any of this aloud; he just locks eyes with the picture of his shady co-worker and his deceased lover. "Oh mon dieu..." he utters to himself.
Selena is sitting on her bed, in the middle of a very detailed Tumblr post about how she was oh-so-shockingly refused entry, when the landline starts to ring. Not wanting to interrupt the flow of her writing, she calls out to Josh and requests that he get it, but of course she gets no reply because he's stuck downstairs in the middle of a cliffhanger. As such, she rolls her eyes and picks up the connection that rests on her bedside table, putting her phone to her ear and saying, "You've reached Selena James Washington, do you have any trigger warnings before you speak?" "Um, I don't think so," replies Joe, who's on the other line, and he tells her, "I'm Joseph DeWar, I'm a friend of Josh's." "I'm afraid he's busy at the moment. I presume, anyway," she tells him, only for her to reveal that it's actually her he wishes to speak to. Selena stifles another scream at this, "B-but... but you sound like a white male..." "I am?" Joe responds, and she stifles another. "You said you had no trigger warnings for me," the tranny squeaks, and Joe tells her, "Sorry? Look, I just wanted to inquire about your friend, Lindsay Green? I was wondering if maybe you had, like, an address or a contact num--" "Why? So you can rape her?!" Selena squawks, and Joe, on his cell phone in the middle of the Littles' sitting room, is shocked. "Is that why I haven't seen her since the day before yesterday? Have you already done something? Thought you'd call me up? Make an alibi?! All the better to lie to the authorities with!" "What?!" Joe exclaims, and then, "Not that you need to lie! They'd believe anything your white male mouth told them anyway! WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO LINDS--" Joe just hangs up, not seeing it as worth the trouble, and pockets his phone while rolling his eyes. He then gets back to wrapping ears of corn for the Littles' Kwanzaa bush, only to grow distracted by Rochelle rolling into the room in her wheelchair. "So," she says, applying the brakes so that she can be sitting opposite him, "Manny tells me you've been getting crafty of late." "Crafty?" Joe questions, blinking, "Oh, you mean my newfound artsiness? Yeah, I suppose you could say that." "Mhm," Rochelle nods pointedly, "just be careful you don't make a mess, because messes in this house tend to get cleaned up one way or another, with or without a butler present." "Is that so?" Joe asks, and Rochelle tells him, "Yes." "Huh," Joe then trails off, "and here I happened upon some messes that had only halfway been taken care of." "The hell you chattin'?" Rochelle demands, and Joe shrugs, saying, "Oh, nothing. It's just a shame you're in that chair. Can't take any trips upstairs to... the attic, for instance." "Neither can you," Rochelle makes clear, "Only our private possessions are kept up there. It's out of bounds." "Yeah," Joe smiles, "it is. Now, if you don't mind, I have some deep cleaning to tend to. Upstairs." Rochelle appears indignant that she's unable to follow him, while he just continues to smile and makes his way to the upper floor. He then notices the stairs to the attic, and sees that nobody is around. And so, being careful not to create the creaking noise as he hops onto the first step, he slowly ascends further. But, when he makes it to the door, it doesn't open.
On the other side, we see that some of the tarp-covered furniture has been moved in front of it, keeping it barricaded for the time being. Manny is in there right now, having pulled back the carpet in the corner, and now he's cleaning up the blood stain with industrial strength bleach. Down on his knees, scrubbing. Going over everything with a fine tooth comb. And then... he pulls the carpet back even further, and takes a look under a loose floorboard. Whatever's under there brings a tear to his eye, though of course we don't see, and then he takes out a drill and makes sure that the floorboard will no longer be loose. "Good luck finding out anything else," he utters.
Joe descends the attic stairs as quietly as he ascended them, hearing the sound of the drill and looking even more suspicious.
Back in the living room, Rochelle stares at a photograph of herself and her family up on the mantle. She wants to go and grab it, but can't reach thanks to being stuck in the damn chair. Smiling at the nice picture of Aliza, Manny and her, and says to the room, "You wanna dig into our secrets, Joe? My secrets? Then fine. Bring it on." And then... she moves her legs. She puts her feet on the floor and rises from her chair, even taking a few steps towards the mantle and finding nothing difficult about it. This woman can walk just fine. "'Cause alla that nonsense is just the tip of the damn iceberg." She then plucks the photo from the mantle and stares down at it lovingly, mouthing the words "Happy Kwanzaa, babies", that useless chair discarded in the background for the moment.
"Ali! Ali!" Ben is heard exclaiming while the employer whose name he shouts remains sitting in the living room, staring into space, her eyes darting towards the tree which still hasn't been decorated before they come to acknowledge her butler. "Ali?" Ben then utters upon entering the room and, slowly, Ms. Del Barrio turns to look at him. She doesn't respond though, and so he just continues, saying, "You're never gonna believe what I just found out about Valentina." Ali blinks in his general direction, causing Ben to furrow his brow in worry. Forgetting his recent revelation, he conveys only concern as he sits beside his boss and asks her if she's okay. "I asked you to get that tree decorated two days ago," is all she can bring herself to say, her voice a little croaky from not having been used much, "Please do it." "Ali--" "Do it now," she states, "Please." There is very little emotion in her voice, and her gape remains ever so vacant, and then she just stands up and awkwardly exits the room. Ben, still clutching to this big news about Valentina (who's yet to return home following her grand victory across the street), just sighs, looking up at the very tall tree and figuring that he best get to work.
Alison, meanwhile, can be seen slowly wandering through the Del Barrio mansion, up the foyer stairs and around the long, empty hallways.
Ben removes some decorations from a box, beginning the process by hanging the larger ornaments around the bottom of the tree.
While rubbing her belly, Ali stops - outside the bedroom she used to share with Jorgio. The very location that the fetus inside her was conceived. She lets out a deep sigh, and continues walking.
The tree is already starting to look rather good with the various baubles that have been strewn around it, along with some start tinsel, but Ben can only reach the bottom half really, and so he goes to fetch a step-ladder to see the process through the completion.
Her melancholy sensations refuse to subside, and soon she comes across an entranceway to a stairwell that hasn't been visited in a while. For some reason, it's been left open, and so she goes to investigate. She still walks like a ghost, though, haunting her own house.
To make his work more festive, Ben turns up a Christmas song that comes on the radio, allowing it to permeate the walls of the mansion. He then climbs up the step-ladder, box in tow, and plants more baubles around the tree's upper-half.
Ali begins to descend one of this place's many winding staircases that lead down to the basement - the basement - and soon she's just standing on a stone platform. There are still quite a few stairs to go before she's reached the bottom, but she can't seem to will herself to go on. Past the wine cellar, round the corner... She just stands there, on the platform, and tears begin to well up in her eyes. She clutches her stomach again, shaking, not even noticing the flicker of a shadow behind her that really shouldn't be there.
Ben is back on the floor, his breathing heavy from all his trips up and down the step-ladder, but the tree is complete now - almost. There's just one thing missing. And so, Ben approaches the smallest box amid the others, opening it up and taking out the angel for the top. It's a rather beautiful decoration; ornate porcelain with a well-detailed face, silken white gown, grand golden wings and golden-painted locks to match. Ben even takes a moment to admire it before he once again begins to climb the ladder, being very cautious as he ascends it one-handed.
"I... I..." are the only words Ali is able to form at the moment as tears start streaming down her cheeks. She's still standing there, clutching her belly, staring down at the hallway that - everyday for so long - she brought a silver tray through to the girls who used to reside to the right. That shadow again, another, "I...", and then--
Upon making it to the top of the ladder, Ben reaches his hand as far as it will go in order to place the beautiful blonde angel at the top of the tree.
A pair of hands appear from the dark corners of the Del Barrio chamber, thrusting themselves forward into Ali's back. The rich pregnant woman lets out a scream.
The scream goes unheard by Ben, thanks to the Christmas music still playing faintly in the background, although perhaps something from afar does perturb him, because suddenly his hand slips and the angel--
Ali loses her balance, her feet unable to carry her, and trips downward thanks to the hard push she's received.
Ben gasps as the angel falls from his grip, beginning to tumble, all the way to the floor.
Ali hits the first step as she falls, and every single other on the way down as that fall becomes a roll, her face and stomach both growing battered in the descent.
The angel finally makes contact with the ground.
Ali finally hits the concrete at the foot of the stairs.
The angel shatters outward, its beautiful and ornate porcelain reduced to nothing but yet another giant mess that Ben will soon have to clean up.
Ali's head smacks against the floor and her eyes refuse to open, a patch of blood beginning to emanate outward. Her hand remains clutching her pregnant stomach, and then the shadow - the figure of the person who pushed her - looms over her.
Ben stares down, from the ladder, at the broken bits of angel which currently litter the floor.
"I'm sorry," Silvia's voice booms down in the basement, "But I had to do what I had to do. I could not suffer that thing to live." She continues to stare down at the unconscious Ali, her expression stiff, her face unmoving. And, as we see her face now, we also see it...
...25 years ago, as she stands outside the church. The rain is absolutely pouring over her, as we've already seen, and then she vows, "I don't care how long it takes, or how far I have to go, I'm going to find that baby… and kill him." (see "Malice in Workerland") She then starts to walk away, to embark on the mission she's set herself, when--
Silvia's face in the present, shadows dancing over it. She takes a look out at this basement and--
Another flash, to even longer ago. Lily's face screaming. Screaming and screaming. We don't quite glimpse the locale, although it certainly is familiar. A baby's cries are soon heard.
Ali's hand falls from her pregnant belly as she continues to lie there. Silvia takes a step back.
Again, walking away, right after Lily's murder - when the whole church behind her suddenly explodes. A fiery inferno is unleashed from within and Silvia dives like the most elegant demon escaping from hell. Was she expecting this? Who knows. The resultant fire isn't so bad, thanks to the rain, and then the madwoman is just crawling through the dank mud to escape any ensuing shrapnel. She soon finds herself back at Lily's grave, staring down at the body of the dead girl she just strangled. As water fills the poor girl's final resting place, Silvia utters, "I didn't wanna do it, honey. But I had to. You understand."
"I did not want to do this," Silvia utters in the present, "But if you'll excuse me... it's time I had myself a little Christmas vacation." And with that, she exits the basement. Her footsteps can be heard growing fainter as the puddle of blood coming from Ali grows larger. The unconscious pregnant woman remains untended to, and the question remains of how much longer she'll be merely "unconscious" - or pregnant. Not such a Merry Christmas after all...
- What exactly did Matthew learn about Joanna ("Emilie") that Jose wanted to use as blackmail?
- What didn't the Littles want Josh to find out, relating to the blood-spattered white cloth?
- Why was Silvia chasing Lily and why was she dead-set on killing the baby?
- What is Silvia's history with Jorgio and why did she kill and frame him?
- What exactly is Valentina's endgame plan in warring with Ben?
- Why did Rochelle feel the need to flee back to Wikerly Hills? Which child does she blame?
- How did Joanna come to obtain the burn scar on her hand?
- How did the church Joe was abandoned at come to explode?
- Why did Lily disappear a year prior to her death?
- What is Rochelle's history with both Lily and Silvia?
- Where did the blood stain in the Littles' attic floor come from?
- Why did/was Joanna a prisoner, refer to "mud huts", miss out on education and have a fake ID?
- What's under the floorboards of the Littles' attic?
- Why is Rochelle faking paralysis?
- Why did Silvia feel as though she had to push Ali down the stairs?