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'Scandal' recap, 'Inside the Bubble'

Kerry Washington (left) and Joe Morton on "Scandal."
Kerry Washington (left) and Joe Morton on "Scandal." (Eric McCandless / ABC)

Fitz is still pushing gun reform and the Republicans are not happy. While dropping her daughter off at school, RNC Chairwoman Lizzie Bear is cornered by a disgruntled gun lobbyist who is upset that David Rosen is set to defend gun legislation that Fitz (the Republican president who was elected with financial support from gun lobby groups) pushed through. Liz assures him she'll be lighting a fire under Judge Sparks in about an hour. (Side note: Am I the only one who loves Portia de Rossi's haircut? It's perfect for this role.)

If that plan doesn't go through, there is always Michael. Cyrus runs into him at a restaurant and doesn't hesitate to insinuate that he's a stalker. Michael shrugs off the accusation, saying that he's waiting for some of his fellow MBA students to arrive for breakfast, because he's not just a prostitute. He has a brain, too, Cyrus, you old elitist.

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Olivia visits her father. The very thought that his daughter would "stop by" to see him is just inconceivable, but he's excited nonetheless. Despite the fact he's a murderous liar, Rowan still occasionally makes attempts at being a good dad. He calls Olivia out on what's bugging her: transitioning back into her D.C. life after months on that uncharted island.

After a heart-to-heart about being under deep cover, Rowan has a brilliant (read: terrible) idea. Jake and Olivia should stop by for dinner. He even promises to learn to like Jake, and Liv agrees to run it by her beau.

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As she's leaving, Olivia gets a call from Abby, who just heard from Catherine Winslow, an old friend of theirs from law school. Catherine never took the bar, but her husband is a successful lawyer and her house is plenty swanky.

Catherine's daughter, a model student named Caitlin, ran away after they got into a fight. It's not the first time that the 17-year-old has run off, but this is the longest she's ever been gone. Catherine says she wants to make sure she is safe, but doesn't feel comfortable calling the police because she's worried the news will leak to the press.

Liv promises to find her, but in the meantime, she takes on another challenge: convincing Jake to have dinner with her father a.k.a Command. Jake is apprehensive, but not because Liv's dad once tortured him. He doesn't want to go because Olivia isn't his girlfriend. If neither of them can commit to someone they voluntarily shacked up with on deserted island, then what hope is there for my love life?

Anyway, Jake's busy cornering Charlie in a parking deck and slamming his head into a vending machine because he's still the only one who seems to care about finding out who killed Harrison.

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At the White House, Mellie's fixated on the Killer Cliff Bride, a newlywed who got caught on camera pushing her husband off a cliff at Yosemite whose story has been on the news. She's got aides moving office equipment from the office. What are you up to, Mellie?

But back to P&A for the case of the week. Huck was able to hack into Caitlin's voicemail where he found a message from her ex-boyfriend Darren. Quinn goes to interview him. He hasn't heard from Caitlin for a week, but her Instagram boasts a bunch of selfies with her best friend, Faith. Faith last heard from her two days ago, but she's not concerned because Caitlin often "does her own thing." Olivia's gut tells her there's something wrong with two best friends not checking in on each other in that time, and Olivia's gut is never wrong. Sure enough, Huck finds an Uber charge on Faith's card from the night that Caitlin went missing.

Liv and Catherine are catching up over a glass of wine when Quinn calls with news of Caitlin. She's at the Taft Hotel under Faith's name, and since she ordered room service, Quinn's sure she's fine. Just as she starts to leave, she gets a call from Jake, who has been busy trying to torture information out of Charlie. Charlie assured him that torture wouldn't yield any results and instead requests to see Quinn.

She's hesitant, at first, but after Jake guilt trips her, she agrees to talk to him…only she doesn't know that he's asked to have her there for the whole night. This cannot end well.

Charlie tries to start things off with a little coy teasing, but Quinn's not biting. She accuses him of having her summoned there in the hopes that she'll want him back, and since she's a human and not some girl from a Charlie Porn Fantasy, she thinks the move is more pathetic than sexy. He tries to strike her and that's when Quinn pulls out some new hand-to-hand moves. Trying your best not to be useless this season, huh? Choking, he tells her that she can make fun of him for wanting her, but no one else does. Ouch. Eventually, it works and they end up making out a bit, just as Jake comes to tell Quinn she's free to go.

Mellie calls Abby over to the East Wing. She wants Abby to alert the press and set up a trip to Yosemite so that she can talk to Jeff, the Park Ranger conducting the investigation. She doesn't think that the "Killer Cliff Bride" murdered her husband, but instead believes the bride was reaching out to save her husband after he slipped.

Abby thinks reminding Mellie that a trip to Yosemite would distract from gun control will squash this whole thing, but she doesn't know Mrs. Grant well enough. She asks that Abby fly in the park ranger instead. She tries to go to Cyrus to complain, but he's distracted by a call from Michael, who wants to "apologize for being short this morning" and to get in a little flirting. Do not fall for it, Cy.

Fitz is in the West Wing drowning his sorrows over gun control in some dark liquor when Abby snitches about Mellie's obsession with the Killer Cliff Bride. But this is a reformed Fitzgerald Grant that we have on our hands and he demands that Abby give Mellie whatever she wants.

Besides, he has more pressing concerns. David Rosen comes to confirm that they are losing gun control, since David was unable to sway Judge Sparks in court. Fitz says that he needs his presidency to mean something. "If I don't get to be a soccer dad in Vermont, then I need some jerk not to be able to buy an AK-47 and shoot up a school. That is not too much to ask." It's enough for David Rosen to go back to his Storage Unit of Horrors and pull out a file, but more on that later.

Liv's sleeping peacefully (Side note: Really hate it when black women on TV do not wrap their hair at night, but still wake up looking perfect. It's unrealistic. Give her a darn headscarf) when Huck's creepy behind wakes her. He's found a sex tape that was deleted from Caitlin's laptop; only Caitlin isn't the one fooling around with Darren in the video. It's Catherine.

Caitlin planned on telling her father about her mother's really, really disturbing affair, and Liv realizes that they sent Catherine to the Taft. She calls the hotel, but the police had already been there. Caitlin's dead, shot two times in the chest. They meet Catherine at the morgue and Liv instantly confronts her about the affair and accuses her of the murder. She claims that she didn't have anything to do with the murder, which I don't buy at all.

After getting chewed out by Abby for refusing to share details about Catherine's case – Liv took herself off of it and felt it would be "unethical" to discuss it with someone outside of P&A – Olivia heads over to Jake's. He's being super weird and talking to her through a crack in the door, claiming he's busy "working."  She points out that he doesn't have a job and starts to ask if there's another woman inside, before deciding that she doesn't want to know the answer. Since she is in love with another man, he refuses to provide her with anything other than booty calls. But Liv's fed up and calls it off.

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Catherine later returns to Liv to beg for her help. She admits that sleeping with Darren was wrong and that she ruined everything, but she insists that she didn't kill Caitlin.

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Meanwhile, David has officially gone dark side and it's kind of amazing. The file he pulled from his storage unit contained evidence that Judge Sparks killed a woman and her son in a hit and run at Rock Creek Park a few years ago. He threatens to send that info to the Times if Sparks doesn't back gun control. When he arrives at the WH, there's champagne being poured. Sparks came through and gun reform is on its way.

The consequences of David's actions come quickly, though. Shortly after changing his vote, Judge Sparks committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.

Mellie's meeting is well underway and she's got charts and packets full of proof that the Killer Bride didn't kill her husband. Unfortunately, the FBI rep tells her that two eyewitnesses came out this morning, confirming that the husband really did fall. It's so sad. She worked so hard on this, and honestly, did a very good job. Abby sweetly cuts the presentation short, claiming that Mellie has another meeting scheduled.

Afterward, Fitz invites Abby into his office for a glass of Scotch. He apologizes for underestimating her and commends her on the job she's doing. She tells him that he should really apologize for never bothering to learn her name, which he does … but he follows that up by asking about Olivia. Poor Abby's rocking this job, but is still trapped in Liv's shadow.

Jake's had a break in his case. He finds a photo of B613/Secret Service guy Tom with Little Jerry minutes before he died, and calls Olivia to agree to that dinner with Rowan. When Liv takes a call during the middle of the very awkward dinner, Rowan thanks Jake for protecting his daughter, which Jake immediately follows up by accusing Rowan of having Harrison, Adnan and Little Jerry killed. He demands that Rowan and leave for the island. Only this is Rowan Pope we're talking about. He promises that he'll be standing over Jake when he dies.

That call Liv got was from Huck, who uncovered elevator security camera footage of Caitlin struggling with a man over a folder. Facial recognition software couldn't reveal who the man was, and Catherine's just been charged with her daughter's murder.

Cyrus stupidly took Michael's bait and finds him at a bar and…cut to him paying Michael the next morning. It's only a matter of time before he allows that pretty face to ruin his entire life.

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