Andrew Nichols declared war on Fitz and Liv almost shot her father on the Scandal mid-season finale, “Where the Sun Don’t Shine.”

Scandal Winter Finale Recap

Liv (Kerry Washington) is reeling from her last interaction with her father, when he flat out told her he would never protect her ever again and would be going after the President (Tony Goldwyn) and Jake (Scott Foley). She snaps out of it, however, when they go visit her mother (Khandi Alexander), now out of the B613 hole and in jail. She wants her mother to tell her everything she might know about what Rowan (Joe Morton) could be planning, and then she wants Jake and Fitz to hunt down her father and kill him.

Later, when Liv visits her mother again, desperate to know where Rowan may have gone, Maya refuses to help her. Instead, Maya accuses Liv of being just like her father. Liv is just as embedded with B613 and as blinded by her notions of saving ‘the Republic’ as Rowan, Maya says. She needs to get over it.

Cyrus’ Affair is exposed

Lizzie (Portia de Rossi), who got a second opinion on her bugged phone, confronts Liv at her office. She knows Liv covered for Cyrus Beene (Jeff Perry); what she does not know is why. Liv fires back and then goes straight to the Oval Office, where she has a crisis meeting with Cyrus, Fitz, Abby (Darby Stanchfield) and Mellie (Bellamy Young).

After finally speaking to Quinn (Katie Lowes), Liv knows all about Lizzie meeting with Andrew Nichols (Jon Tenney) and the security guy Huck (Guillermo Diaz) killed, and she lays it all out for the President and Cyrus, to make sure they all know the stakes. Liv tells the group that Lizzie is having an affair with Andrew, and warns Cyrus that she thinks Lizzie is gearing up for an attack that will, no doubt, be based on his illicit affair with Michael the prostitute (Matthew Del Negro). The words are barely out of her mouth before Abby gets an alert about a news story about Cyrus – complete with explicit photos.

Fitz is adamant that they will fight to keep Cyrus in his position as Chief of Staff, and Liv comes up with a PR campaign to help. In order for the public to forgive Cyrus carrying on an affair with a prostitute, Liv says they must fight back with a love story. In other words, Cyrus will pay Michael to marry him for a certain amount of time. In return for the payment, Michael will go along with the charade and sign a non-disclosure agreement. Michael’s in, but Cyrus refuses to marry another man in honor of James’ memory. He walks into the Oval Office and hands Fitz his resignation instead.

Meanwhile, Fitz is trying to decide whether or not he wants to go to war in West Angola after the assassination attempt on the Vice President. After realizing that Andrew might not be all he seems, what with his affair with Lizzie, Fitz decides against sending troops, causing Lizzie to go straight to Mellie. She thought they were on the same side, but Mellie is more than happy to tell her that they were never on the same side; they were only sleeping with the same man. “That doesn’t make us friends. It just makes us both at risk for the same STDs,” Mellie tells her.

In light of the Cyrus scandal, David Rosen (Joshua Malina) is investigating the White Hosue, specifically whether or not Cyrus leaked any classified documents to Michael. During his interrogation of Abby, however, he gets more than be bargained for when he asks her for an alibi and she reveals she spent the night with Leo Bergen. The investigation doesn’t go too far after that, mostly due to the fact that Cyrus comes back to work. After getting some tough love from Liv, Cyrus has decided to reclaim his place as “one of the most powerful men in the world.” He will marry Michael, and he will return to the White House.

Rowan Goes After Jake, B613 Agents

Across town, Jake is hunting Rowan and finds himself narrowly escaping an assassination attempt from a B613 agent. The killer is carrying a playing card with Jake’s face on it – something Jake recognizes as a B613 cleaning house protocol. Rowan is killing all agents, tying up every loose end. To ensure Liv’s safety, Jake gives her a gun and a sexy refresher course on how to use it. He also tells Quinn and Huck, which spurs Quinn to warn Charlie (George Newbern), her psycho ex. Quinn and Charlie sleep together, and it isn’t until later that Quinn finds her own face on a playing card in Charlie’s jacket. The two fight, and it looks as if one of them is most definitely going to kill the other, but instead, they both give up. Charlie doesn’t want to kill Quinn, but more importantly, he also wants to make things right between them. After Rowan tasked Charlie with switching out the B613 files in last week’s episode, Charlie kept a few for insurance, and he’s willing to lend some to Huck so that he can prove to his ex wife that he is telling the truth about being a spy.

Liv Pulls The Trigger

After her gun lesson with Jake, Liv returns home to find Rowan waiting for her. He’s there because, no matter how hard he tries, he can’t let go of the happy memories they share. He also has a gun. He delivers yet another speech about how he gave her everything, was the best father he could be and put her on the path to greatness. She’s the one who is ungrateful, the one who ruined their relationship. In the heat of the moment, Liv grabs his gun and aims straight at Rowan’s head. She pulls the trigger – nothing happens. Rowan is furious, but he leaves Liv safe in her apartment.

After a tough day, Liv decides she’s done. She doesn’t want to talk about her father, or even think about him. Instead, she wants to listen to old records and dance. When Jake arrives, she tells him that she wants to stand in the sun with him, but she also wants to be in Vermont with Fitz. She isn’t choosing either one of them. For now, she’s choosing Olivia, and right now, Olivia wants to dance. Jake can either join her or leave. He joins her.

Andrew Nichols & Lizzie North Kidnap Olivia

Back at Pope & Associates, Huck and Quinn are putting together the final pieces of Lizzie North’s plans. After doing a little digging, the super spy duo find out that Lizzie North and Andrew Nichols were both at the law firm the night the teenage girl was murdered. But, why were they meeting and what were they doing with photos of Olivia? A little more detective work reveals that they were meeting about West Angola, and, after reviewing security footage of the assassination attempt on Nichols, Quinn and Huck agree that he planned it all along. Lizzie and Andrew orchestrated the car bomb in an effort to force Fitz to start a war. But, that still begged the question – how does Olivia fit into all this?

At the White House, Nichols sits down with Fitz and asks him what he thinks is the one thing that he would do anything for. At Liv’s apartment, Jake leaves her dancing alone for one moment to grab some pillows from the bedroom, but when he returns she’s gone.

New episodes of Scandal will return Thursday, January 29, at 9 p.m. on ABC.