Welcome back, Gladiators, to another fun filled trip inside the dramatic world of Scandal. This week starts off with a pretty loud bang, so why don't we just dive right in?
Rumors are circulating around the White House that Lillian Forrester, aka Fitz's reporter girlfriend, is eating for two. Abby, naturally, is very upset about this and confronts Fitz about it. However, during her tirade, she gets news that Lillian isn't in fact pregnant. The downside being that the issue is much worse.
Meanwhile, at OPA, Mellie is pleased to see that she's up 8 points in the polls. Liv tells her, however, that she shouldn't celebrate just yet and tells her that, in order to garner every possible vote, she should set her sights on the Latino demographic. Mellie is apprehensive, not wanting to get caught in another lie, but Liv tells her that instead of obviously pandering, she should play up her status as a mother and support immigration and Catholicism. Liv says that Mellie needs the support of a man named Cardinal Suarez, despite Mellie's previously very non-catholic behavior.
Their meeting is interrupted when Abby calls Liv to ask for help dealing with the Lillian situation. Liv goes to the clinic Lillian has been visiting, and it's revealed that Lillian has been meeting with former Vice President Andrew Nichols, who, if you recall, was forced to step down after suffering from a Huck-induced stroke. Andrew apparently has regained his speech and used it to tell Lillian all about how Fitz went to war to save Liv, leaving out, of course, the part where he was the one to kidnap her in the first place. Liv asks him why he's doing this and he tells her its because he's stuck in this condition. When Liv tells him that it was his fault (she still believes that the stroke was caused by shrapnel from his staged terrorist attack), Andrew tells her what actually happened to him. Liv tells him not to mess with her and leaves.
Back at the White House, it's all hands on deck to try and stop Lillian's story from being published. Fitz asks who was responsible for Andrew's stroke but no one is fessing up. Mellie suggests that she be the one to talk to Andrew but Liz tells Mellie that she should just drop out of the race and save herself the embarrassment. Mellie says that all of them will go down if news gets out but Fitz tells them that Cyrus has immunity, so he'll be protected from prosecution. Liz suggests that they just kill him but everyone is heavily against that. Abby decides that Mellie will talk to Andrew while the rest of them will shred every piece of evidence. As they all leave, Fitz stops Liv and thanks her for coming when he called. She, however, points out that it was Abby who called, not him.
Later, Liv dreams about the night she was kidnapped. She wakes up angry, having realized that it was Huck who caused Andrew's stroke. She confronts him at OPA, telling him that he's not allowed to finish what he started. She tells Huck and Quinn to destroy any evidence related to West Angola and anything linking Andrew and Mellie.
Later, Liz approaches Huck and asks him to kill Nichols. She uses what happened to Liv to try and sway him and he takes the information. (No, Huck! You're better than this).
On the Vargas campaign trail, Alex proposes using an ad which capitalizes on Vargas' heroics at the Capitol but Vargas says he won't use that tragedy to his advantage. Cyrus suggests using social media instead to make it look less direct and Vargas agrees, dismissing Alex. After they leave, Alex notices a shot of Tom in the Capitol footage.
Meanwhile, Mellie goes to visit Andrew. When he's standoffish, she tells him that he broke her heart when he chose Fitz and he apologizes, saying that he really did care about her. She says that she still cares about him and urges him to use his recovery to give them another chance instead of attacking Fitz. He tries to get her to sleep with him and when she refuses, he asks if he disgusts her. He says the feeling is mutual.
Mellie tells Liv that Andrew won't stop until he gets what he wants but Liv says nothing has come out yet. Mellie says that eventually it will and they can't live with this hanging over their heads. Liv, who is till seeing flashes of her time in captivity, snaps at Mellie and tells her that she's going to fix the situation but she needs Mellie to keep it together and let her do what she does best.
Olivia approaches Rowan and Jake for help with the Lillian situation, asking Jake to use his NSA connections to keep tabs on Lillian. Rowan tells her that when her plan fails, her only option will be to kill Andy but Liv says that her world is not his world and she doesn't have to resort to that. Rowan tells her that their world's are the same and that she can't say he didn't warn her.
Later, Huck pays Andrew another visit, drugging him and taking him to the secret bunker. Abby comes in and Liv tells her that they took him because Liz asked Huck to kill him. When Andrew wakes up, Liv tells him that they took him to protect him. He asks her what she wants and she asks him how much he wants to kill the story. He says he doesn't want money but eventually he comes up with $10 million and says that he wants Liv to represent him with his book deal.
Back at OPA, Marcus is upset about being left out yet again but still manages to get Cardinal Suarez for Mellie's endorsement. Meanwhile, at Vargas campaign headquarters, Alex asks an intern if Tom worked for the Capitol. She says no and Alex continues to dig.
Rowan and Jake overhear that Lillian plans to publish her story in less than 48 hours. Liv calls another meeting and Abby tells the group about Andrew's $10 million offer. Abby says that they won't give him anything unless he signs an nondisclosure and they figure out how to come up with the money. Mellie says that she's not paying anything. Abby tells Fitz that it's worth a shot and he agrees to pay the rest, with Liz ponying up the other $5 million.
Down in the bunker, Liv gives the news to Andrew, telling him that he has to recant the story before he gets anything. He says that he wants the money first or no deal. Huck transfers the money and immediately afterward, Andrew raises the stakes and asks for more outlandish things, clearly not planning to recant at all. As he goes back on the deal, Liv gets more flashes from her time as a captive.
Abby suggests to Fitz that they offer Andrew a job to keep him quiet. Fitz blames himself for what happened and offers a new plan: he'll take the blame for faking the assassination attempt on Andrew in order to garner support for the war, nothing about Liv or the kidnapping will come out, and everyone else will escape relatively unscathed. Abby tells him not to be a martyr but he tells her to go make the deal.
At Liv's, Abby tells her about Fitz's plan. She tells her that they need to make a plan to shut this down. She says that he's being weak and giving up but Liv says that Fitz is finally acting like a president and being a leader by taking responsibility for what happened on his watch. Abby is worried about what she'll do after everything hits the fan but Liv tells her that she'll bounce back quickly and that she could always come back to OPA. Abby clearly isn't for this idea and leaves. Later, Abby goes to visit Andrew.
Liv tells Mellie about Fitz's decision and Mellie seems pretty excited about it. Then Jake calls and tells Liv that the story has shifted and is now about Mellie and her affairs during her time as First Lady. Liv realizes that someone made a deal with Andrew and goes to see Abby, telling her that they need to stop it. When Abby doesn't respond, Liv realizes that it was her. Abby says that Fitz won't be stepping down. She says that she took Liv's advice and she did what she had to do for the President. She says that she doesn't work for Liv, it's the other way around, and that Liv will no longer be allowed at the White House without her permission. Liv leaves, stunned.
Back at OPA, Marcus tells Liv that he booked a meeting between the Cardinal and Mellie. Liv just tells him to set it up and he's not thrilled with her lack of response. He asks her what's been going on and she nearly tells him but decides to dismiss him instead, yet again. She calls Jake and tells him to get her into the White House.
Meanwhile, Abby goes to tell Fitz about her plan while Liv goes to meet with Andrew. She asks him what he really wants but he just makes a sexual innuendo. She tells him that if he hurts Mellie, she'll take him down but he just calls her a cheap slut that thinks she someone better. Finally, as he continues to insult her, Liv's traumatic flashbacks come to a head and she snaps, beating him with a chair, killing him.
Fitz comes down to the bunker to find Liv nearly catatonic. He hugs her and tells her that it's going to be OK. Abby comes in to see Andrew's body and Liv tells her that she needs to release a statement about Andrew's death and find Lillian to shut down the story. She also tells her never to cross her again before leaving, reminding her that she only has one hour.
Fitz releases his statement while Quinn and Huck pick up Liv and she cleans herself up. Liz and Mellie both make statements about Andrew's death while Cyrus laughs at a hotel, in bed with Tom. Unfortunately, Alex now knows about the connection between Tom and Cyrus and goes to talk to Michael, Cyrus's husband, about the affair.
Back at OPA, Marcus sees the news and asks Huck and Quinn if they murdered Andrew. They deny it but Marcus sees right through it. He tells them that if they're going to continue to shut him out of everything, then there's no point to him being there. Finally, we see that Liv had Quinn and Huck drop her off at Rowan's house and he opens the door, welcoming her home.
This episode was a roller-coaster of emotions! I was mostly shocked by how quick Abby was to turn on Liv. It didn't take much for Abby to reveal herself as the "monster" she so desperately wants to be. I will say that I'm not exactly sad to see Andrew gone for good. And I can't wait to see the backlash from this new cover up.
What did you think? Tell us in the comments!