A long-dormant survival instinct swims through the sea of Bill's hormones and prods him to look up. He soon detaches from Margene's sucking maw. She misses the cue to maybe cool it in front of the Alpha Wife and leans out the window to trill, "Look! It's brand new! And next time yours is on the blink, you won't have to take a loaner while it's in the shop!" Behind her, Bill is smiling like, Please do not kill me the next time I am scheduled for your night. Barb gives him a smile like, See how cool I am with you being generous to wife number three! This is because I am mature, unlike wife number three!, then closes the door so she can go seethe over that pesky plate in the sink.
Back at the Juniper Creek compound, Adaleen is reading from a textbook: "Be-fore you begin to study the complex in-ter-act-ions of the Earth's physical systems, test your knowledge of a few foun-da-tion concepts." I love the exaggerated enunciation; it's her book-learning voice. Adaleen is trying to school sister-wife Rhonda, but the girl is looking in the other direction and daydreaming. Adaleen gives her a look pointed enough to pierce the scalp and asks, "How is the Earth like a magnet?" Rhonda turns around and says pettishly, "I don't know, Adaleen. Where's New York City?" Adaleen gives her a look that plainly says, "Cram it," and replies shortly, "It's far away." Then she resumes trying to ask questions about magnetic north, but Rhonda would rather work out the logistics of getting to New York City. Adaleen says with patently insincere sweetness, "You don't need to know that, sweetie." Back to the lesson, but Rhonda deliberately turns her back on Adaleen so she can woolgather without any pesky magnetism lessons. Adaleen finally leans in and hisses, "I am trying to give you an education." And by the sounds of it, she's not trying to sabotage Roman's latest bride by teaching her that magnetism is caused by hundreds of tiny, angry metal elves in the Earth's core. How generous of her.
The phone rings and Adaleen heads inside to answer it. It's Nicki; she's calling to make sure everyone got her invitations to the party. She's also calling to see if Roman's coming to the party. Adaleen tries to put her off with "He's awfully busy," and Nicki immediately snaps into petulant child mode: "I so want him to come, Mama!" Adaleen isn't having it: "Weddings, funerals, baptisms of the dead -- he's got so many things, and we must pray for the miracle of his continued health." Her tone implies that she's praying for the miracle of impending widowhood. Nicki says, "I just want us to be together, is all." "Honey, what you want is immaterial," Adaleen replies. Yow -- it's too bad Nicki's not in a drinking culture because she could use a good stiff one after that phone conversation.