Morgue. The Doormat barrels through the examining room's doors and splutters to a halt when he spots Pasty Tim's empty body bag. "Dammit!" he mutters. "I figured you'd come by sooner or later," Pepper Anderson calls out casually enough from the far side of the room, and what the hell? She just guessed he'd drop by at some point, so she's been lounging around a roomful of reeking corpses for God knows how long just waiting for him to arrive? Christ, this show sucks. And wow, I do not care about the scene that follows at all. Pepper Anderson basically calls the Doormat on his bullshit and reminds him that whatever he's doing for the Manor Morons now threatens his career, his family, and his freedom. Why, at this point, the Doormat does not come clean and arrange for a summit meeting between Pepper Anderson and the Glamorous Ladies is beyond me. Hundreds of mortals have been made privy to their supposed secret over the years, and everything's always worked out in the end. Why should Pepper Anderson be any different? She shouldn't, is the answer to that damn question, and as a result, this entire contrived storyline is nothing more than a massive pain in my ass. Shut up, Pepper.
Over in Joanna's fifth-floor walkup on the Lower East Side, we arrive to find Joanna bemoaning her miserable lot in life, for she is one of those women who finds happiness only when she's in a relationship no matter how fucking screwed that relationship is, and Joanna may die at her earliest convenience, because I now loathe her more than I've ever hated any supposed innocent on this show, but more than Joanna, I hate the idiot writers who penned this embarrassment of a character in the first place. HATE. Raige lumbers through a toothless pep-talk until she's interrupted by a call from Piper, who passes along the latest information regarding Pasty Tim's whereabouts. As they now have confirmation that they're dealing with zombies, Raige needs to fetch Phoebe from the paper and return to the Manor immediately. Raige whines something about leaving Joanna alone during this, her hour of emotional need, but Raige, honey. Really. Joanna is a sucking black hole of emotional need. I don't care how many times the ever-useless Elders regaled you with tales of her superwonderful specialness and spectacular Whitelightery future. Cut your losses now. Raige pays me no mind, but does jump to follow Piper's order that she return to the Manor posthaste. Raige snaps shut her phone and turns to leave, instructing Joanna to bolt the door behind her. Under no circumstances is Joanna to allow Carl into the apartment. However, if need be, Joanna can summon Raige just by calling out Raige's name. Oh, oops. Forgot to mention that Joanna, for some asinine reason, has no idea Raige is a Whitelighter. Then again, I don't care, because we all know this limp bint's going to turn up as one of the corpse fucker's sticky meat puppets in about ten minutes, right? Right. So, anyway, Joanna locks the door and turns to gaze forlornly upon her lonely little flat. Shut up, loser. "What's the matter, Joanna?" Carl mutters darkly from the depths of the apartment. "I thought you loved being alone with me," he teases as he saunters in from the bedroom beyond. "How did you get in here?" Joanna demands. Carl scowls, crosses his arms, and sneers, "Magic!" before morphing into a decidedly more amused Zankou. Bad, that. The actors involved should have coordinated their expressions for that bit. In any event, Joanna freaks and races to the door, but Zankou quickly latches onto her shoulder and spins her around to snatch at her by the throat. Joanna puckers like a landed trout. Shut UP, Joanna. "'[Raige]'?" Zankou almost whispers. "Is that who you were trying to call out for?" he calmly continues as Joanna goggles and chokes. "Well, I'm afraid [Raige] has abandoned you," Zankou croons, quite casually pushing Joanna off the floor and into the air, "but if it makes you feel any better, I'm sure she'll be very upset she had to miss this." The camera lingers on his cool menace for a moment before allowing Zankou to vanish into the next commercial break. Woof.