But in more important news, Alicia is spending another lonely night in the North Star State in Creepily Nice Hotel when there comes a knock at the door. She walks slowly to open it, as this would be the perfect location for a Stephen King plot, but alas, on the other side stand not a murderer or possessed children, but Kalinda! With wine! The moment we’ve been waiting through all the other boring stuff for! Alicia says, “Kalinda!…And clothes!” She’s excited about the fresh clothes, but note, first, she’s excited about Kalinda. (Duh.)
Honey, I’m home.
I was hoping it’d be you.
They sit on separate beds with their glasses of wine, and Kalinda remarks on how quiet it is. She can’t believe Alicia has had to suffer two days and two nights of this. Alicia says she likes it. Kalinda replies, “Huh. I’d probably kill somebody.” Would you, Kalinda? Would you kill somebody? I can’t help but feel that this is the writers giving an obvious nod to the suspicion of her doing off dear old Nick herself.
Speaking of Nick and That Awful Time That Came Before, Alicia has launched into a monologue about how she misses the quiet in her life before she had to become a lawyer again, when she could sit with a drink at 3 before the kids came home from school and just enjoy the stillness. This picture of her life actually makes me feel rather dispirited, in a way I can’t completely describe, but regardless, the real point is, after a moment, Kalinda then says, “I miss this.” Alicia glances over, says simply, “Yeah.”
Kalinda, regretful, knowing that she’s the reason Kalicia hasn’t been as strong as it should be for too long, then says, equally simply, “I’m sorry.” Alicia responds, “I know.” Kalinda looks down, and smiles.
They promptly move on to talk about the Big Bank Guy, how they can make him actually show up to the table, but you guys, they love each other so good. So. good. So understated but perfect and true. They don’t show what happens next, but I imagine them sleeping apart but near, both feeling safe and happy, finally, again.
In the end, Kalinda helps discover that Big Bank Guy actually has cancer, which is unknown to his bank’s shareholders. His bank is also about to merge with another bank, and knowledge of this illness could, somehow, mess up the merger. Bringing this up seems low, but it’s a low that Lockhart Gardner often steeps to, and they wager this: you give this little girl money, we don’t tell anyone you’re dying. This seems rather awful, but, you know what, it works. Yay for teenage girl getting money, but boo for Bank Guy getting called on for having secret cancer instead of, you know, just being a Bad Bank Guy. The “getting shit for having cancer” conclusion is always a less satisfying sort of justice.
But anyhoo, there’s even more legalese-that-makes-people-feel-bad to get through in this episode! In the business world of Lockhart Gardner, Nathan Lane has called a mediation on Diane and Will, saying he wants to kick them out because they refused a merger opportunity which would have helped their debt and saved the firm. The good part about this is that the mediator is this lovely and slightly sassy woman, bringing the number of powerful women of color on this episode to three, if you include Kalinda, and three is better than what most shows can muster each week.
The bad part is that Diane and Will bring in Cary to be on their side. This is logical, but it also shakes up, and probably destroys, the obvious bromance that has been developing between Cary and Nathan Lane. Cary, we learn, has been helping tutor Mr. Auditor Lane in preparation to take the bar exam, a long-forgotten goal that has now resurfaced.
Auditor Lane strikes me as a profoundly sad character, with Cary being one of the only true bright spots in his life, and the knowledge that he’s the one who obviously cares more in this relationship—Cary says he only helped him out because he felt like he had to—is both humiliating and crushing. Poor, poor serious Nathan Lane.
But I thought you liked me.
With the settlement from Bank Guy, and the knowledge that another creditor has just offered to buy out their debt, the mediator adds salt to Nathan’s wounds by eventually siding with Diane and Will. They know they’re still biding time, as they only have a few months to collect the rest of the money they need until Nathan actually can kick them out, but it’s still a small victory.
That is, until Alicia prepares to say goodbye to Canning and get the hell out of Minnesota, and Canning is all, “Hey, well, I’ll see you soon. Didn’t you hear? I just bought out Lockhart Gardner’s debt. I’m your new creditor. Byeeeee!” Aw, snap. Nice wife is like, “YAY, now we can be besties!” Alicia, as she often does at the end of episodes, just sighs.
What did you think of the first episode back after the break? What do you think was running through Kalinda’s head on her journey from Chicago to Minnesota? What was the last thing Kalicia said to each other before they fell asleep, and the first thing when they woke up? (I think they just gave each other meaningful looks, you know?) And seriously, why does West Nile Virus still exist?