Fade up on Piper, Leo, Phoebe, and Cole sitting around a restaurant table in awkward silence. Phoebe attempts to kick-start conversation with the pitiful, "How about them 'Niners?" Cole looks at her blankly. "The San Francisco Forty-Niners," Phoebe explains, and asks Cole if he follows football. He shrugs silently in reply, leading Phoebe to joke, "He's not human." Cole pulls a spit take with the glass of water he's just raised to his lips, then calls to the passing waitress for the check. Phoebe and Piper give each other the eye, and silently agree to a private confab in the ladies' room. They excuse themselves, leaving the guys alone at the table, and on their way to the bathroom, Phoebe complains to Piper that she can feel Cole pulling away from her. Actually, Phoebe, he might just be pissed off that you allowed Leo to crash the lunch date, but whatever. Back at the table, Leo tells Cole that they all worry about Phoebe, and urges Cole to be "straight" with her. Cole clearly doesn't think it's any business of Leo's what he does with Phoebe. The women return, and the waitress arrives shortly thereafter with the check. Cole suggests that Leo and he split the bill, Leo pretends to reach for his non-existent wallet, and Piper covers for him, pulling out her own credit card to pay for the meal. Before they can continue with more of this tedious and awkward relationship nonsense, Cole's beeper goes off. He insists he has to take the call, apologizes, and leaves.
We cut from Phoebe's expression of dismay to Cole squiggling into the loft at the Demon Emporium, where he assesses the blackened remains of the deputy. Demonic exposition. Vince thanks Cole for sending Prue his way. Vince could feel the "empathic cancer" transfer from his own body into hers during the spell, and Cole asks Vince how long it will be before the empath power cripples Prue. Because she's a mortal, Vince estimates the power will crush Prue's resistance within a day. He thinks that Cole will be pleased to see Prue self-destruct, but Cole reveals he'll be out of town, as he doesn't need to see Piper and Phoebe lose their sister. Vince thinks Cole's been undercover for too long, and that his newfound compassion doesn't suit him. Cole tells Vince to mind his own business, and Vince goes off to take care of Father Thomas, who apparently infected Vince with the empath power in the first place. Cole warns him against this, as the three Ps might catch on to what just happened and track Vince down to reverse the spell. Vince snarks that he's immune to the Halliwell powers, and Cole counters that Vince is not immune to the powers Cole himself possesses. Vince takes the hint and agrees to lie low.