Rowan was tossed out of B-613 and Huck dismissed Quinn, sending her straight into Charlie’s arms in Scandal’s winter finale, “A Door Marked Exit.”

Scandal Recap: eCyrus Covers Up Murder For Sally Langston

The episode began with Vice President Sally Langston (Kate Burton) reliving the murder of her philandering husband, Daniel Douglas (Jack Coleman), for Cyrus (Jeff Perry). She confronted him about the photos, furious with him for putting her chance at the Presidency at risk. Daniel Douglas had had enough and decided to leave her, but, as he walks towards the door, Sally picked up a letter opener from her desk and stabbed him repeatedly in the back. Cyrus is in shock, as is Sally, who cannot stop mumbling about evil, God and the devil. Going over the events leading up to Daniel Douglas’ death – the temptation, the set up, the pimping out of the husband – Cyrus realizes he is at least partly guilty in the murder of the Vice President’s husband and calms Sally long enough to convince her that he will take care of it and she will move forward and continue her path to the presidency.

He calls Charlie (George Newbern), who is still in bed with Quinn (Katie Lowes). At Wonderland, Quinn had been all set to kill Rowan to prove her allegiance to Olivia (Kerry Washington) and Huck (Guillermo Díaz), but the opportunity slipped away from her when Command (Joe Morton) learned that his ex, Maya/Marie/Mamma Pope (Khandi Alexander), had escaped. So, Quinn went home with her new psychotic boyfriend and accompanied him to the Vice President’s house to clean up the murder. They stitch him up and place him in his bed. The story is that he died of a heart attack, but the real trick has to come from Sally. Playing the part of the distraught wife, Sally must find a way to keep the doctor from examining Daniel Douglas closely. Just take off his shirt and it’s clear, this man did not die of a heart attack.

Without Command’s death to redeem herself in Huck’s eyes, Quinn rips out a tracking device Huck had planted in her gums and flushes it down the toilet. What little energy Liv has that isn’t being concentrated on finding her mother is spent being mad at Huck for torturing Quinn and leaving her out in the cold. She tells him he needs to find Command and find Quinn. Jake (Scott Foley) thinks Liv is being too hard on Huck. After all, Huck is dropping everything and desperately searching for Command, the man who took his family from him and practically drove him insane.

Thanks to Fitz (Tony Goldwyn), however, Command is not easy to find, even for seasoned spies Huck and Jake. Fitz, using a surprising force of Presidential power, captured Command and has him in a cell at the Pentagon. He’s still out of the loop as to Maya’s true identity (Marie, the terrorist) and he is doing everything he can to get a rise out of Command. He even brings up his sexual relationship with Liv. It’s one step too far for Rowan, who delivers some serious scolding Fitz’ way, calling him a boy who had everything handed to him. Rowan does not approve of Fitz as a potential suitor for his daughter.

While Abby (Darby Stanchfield) uses her womanly wiles to get David to send her Marie’s terrorist file, news of Daniel Douglas’ death is beginning to spread. Mellie (Bellamy Young) is thrilled when she first finds out, thinking that the Vice President’s grief will keep her sidelined long enough for her not to make a bid at the Presidential election. Cyrus tries to crush her, revealing the truth about Daniel Douglas’ death and attempting at getting Mellie to share in his guilt. She doesn’t bite and tells Cyrus that a person doesn’t kill someone simply because of a cheating scandal. It must have been brewing inside Sally for a while, and Cyrus shouldn’t blame himself. Seeing that Cy is in no condition to handle this, Mellie takes the lead and goes to pay the grieving widow a visit. During her visit, Mellie drops multiple hints that she knows how Daniel Douglas died and communicates that if the Vice President even tries to run against her husband for the Presidency, Mellie will not hesitate to spill all.

Later, Sally meets with Leo (Paul Adelstein) and confesses her crime after he pushes her to continue with her bid for President, saying that her husband is looking down on her from heaven, wanting her to run. Sally can’t take it, and yells that Daniel Douglas was a sinner who deserved to die; he’s not in heaven, she says, he’s in hell. Leo puts two and two together and realizes that Sally killed her husband. Leo doesn’t seem too surprised to find out he wants to make a murderer President. His main source of anger is that Sally called Cyrus instead of him.

Cyrus, meanwhile, is busy trying to navigate how to move forward with his marriage. When James (Dan Bucatinsky) hears of Daniel Douglas’ “heart attack,” he immediately becomes suspicious, and does not get much reassurance from Cyrus, who insists that the death is a coincidence. Still, convinced that Cyrus or Sally Langston killed Daniel Douglas, James goes to David Rosen with his suspicions. David throws James out without a second thought – he trusted James way back when to pursue the voting fraud story and that got him fired. He’s not about to investigate a death nobody finds suspicious just because James says so. Towards the end of the episode, David is approached from a woman from the NSA who brings him a phone call recorded by a secret surveillance program: it’s the Vice President calling Cyrus after killing her husband.

Liv Learns The Truth About Her Mother

Finally, Liv learns what appears to be the whole truth about her mother. Maya/Marie was a woman with no allegiances who traveled the world under numerous aliases and made money stealing top-secret documents and selling them to the highest bidder. She didn’t have any political agenda, and nowhere in her file has she been accused of murder. Abby suggests that maybe Liv doesn’t have to arrest her mother when the plane lands in Hong Kong after all. Her mother was a nonviolent offender who spent 20 years in isolation already. Unsure, and still missing a piece of the puzzle, Liv goes to visit her father at the Pentagon (Huck and Jake had figured out where he was by this point). After a series of misses, Command finally gives Liv a sign that her theory is correct: her mother was detained and taken off that plane, and she lied and told Rowan that there was a bomb sitting on that flight ready to detonate when it landed in London. Rowan trusted that intel and sent Fitz to shoot down the plane before it could get to London. He sacrificed all the innocent people on that flight in order to stop the higher casualties that would have occurred in London. Unfortunately, Maya was lying about the bomb, and she tricked him into shooting down a plane full of people. So he had kept her for 20 years and buried the secret. Liv walks out and instructs Fitz to get her mother and bring her to justice.

Fitz reluctantly lets Rowan go, but he still doesn’t trust him. Rowan tells Fitz that he can threaten him all he wants, but B-613 is more than just Command. If Rowan dies, another Command will appear. Fitz will never be free of B-613.

Back at Pope and Associates, Quinn unexpectedly walks right in through the front door. Abby and Harrison (Columbus Short) avert their eyes, but Quinn doesn’t care. She’s here to see Huck. She wants him to take her return as proof of her allegiance, but Huck only pushes her further away. He tells her that if it were up to him, he would have ripped all her teeth out and killed her. Quinn officially has no home and returns to Charlie, who is over the moon that she came back to him. Charlie seems to genuinely care for Quinn, and he’s no longer threatening to kill her if she leaves him.

James and Cyrus fight, again, and Cyrus lays it all out: James is an unemployed cheater with no legal connections and Cyrus pretty much runs the United States of America. James can’t leave him, not unless he wants to leave their daughter behind. Even with the threats, Cyrus makes it clear that he loves James, always had, always will. He wants them to be together. Later that night, James and Cy make a deal: James will stay with him only if Cy awards him the position of Press Secretary. Will he love Cyrus again? James tells him not to push it.

Jake Is The New Command

At Pope & Associates, Jake ahs come to say goodbye to Olivia. He kisses her, tells her he loved her (past tense). He wants her to know that whatever happens, he did truly love her. Then, at the last second, he switches to present tense and tells her, “I love you.” Then he marches off without a second glance.

Liv doesn’t have too much time to wonder what is going on with Jake. Fitz found the plane they put her mother on: all that was onboard were a few dead agents, no Mamma Pope. But, Maya does call her daughter and promises they will see each other soon. The camera pulls back and reveals that Maya is standing in front of the White House.

After refusing to tell Liv that he wanted to protect her from her mother, and consequently ruining any chance at a father-daughter relationship, Rowan walks into B-613 only to find that his office isn’t his office anymore. Jake sits, looking like an evil mastermind in a suit and tie, and informs Rowan that he is no longer Command. If he wants to join B-613, they’d be happy to give him an aptitude test. Rowan walks out and Jake takes out his phone to call Fitz to let him know he has successfully dismissed Rowan (!).

Scandal will return with new episodes February 27, 2014.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

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More on Scandal:

'Scandal' Recap: Huck Tortures Quinn, Cyrus And James Reach A Breaking Point

'Scandal' Recap: Liv And Fitz Spend The Night Together; Liv Reunites With Her Mother

'Scandal' Recap: Mamma Pope Lives And Quinn Gets Into Bed With B-613

'Scandal' Recap: Liv Says No To Fitz To Run Marcus's Campaign; Cyrus Goes After Harrison