Dark, dark stuff this week, and I mean that in a good way. A hot bath leads to Deb being haunted by creepy, bloody, Rita-reminiscent dreams involving Dexter, and this is probably two episodes later than I would have thought it would happen, but Deb finally questions Dexter about Rita's death, pointing out that she didn't fit the pattern of Trinity's other kills. Dexter confesses to killing Trinity, but doesn't exactly admit how much responsibility he bears for Rita's death, not that Deb's not onto that, as she wonders whether Dexter even loved Rita; what's more, she's not even sure Dexter loves her. Later, she urgently tells Dexter that he's a magnet for trouble, and if he really cares about Harrison, he should send him away to live with his siblings before he really gets hurt. Dexter flatly refuses to acknowledge that Deb might have a point; ensuing developments, however, back her up rather obviously.
On the Speltzer front, the good news is that thanks to a tip, MM manages to bring him in; the bad news is that, having failed to find any of his DNA at the crime scene and with Deb being unable to testify to a positive ID thanks to his mask, eliciting a confession is their only hope. Deb does an excellent job in provoking a culpatory outburst from him; unfortunately, police tape reveals an irregularity with the Miranda rights in Speltzer's arrest, so he's free. Surely feeling vindicated at yet another failure of the legal system, Dexter resolves to take care of Speltzer on his own, but Speltzer catches him in his RV, and Dexter's martial-arts training isn't enough to overcome Speltzer's Goliath-ness. Dexter comes to in a grander version of last week's death maze, and soon Speltzer is coming at him with that helmet on his head and an axe in his hand. Dexter manages to escape, but he knows now that it's him or Speltzer, so he sends Jamie to take Harrison to his grandparents', where he'll stay for a few weeks – or maybe, despite DVO's assertions to the contrary, forever.
Isaak Pullo does a little research on Dexter and wonders whether he killed Viktor as payback for Anderson, and resolves to talk to him rather than (or at least before he commits to) getting rid of him, so Dexter's safe from the Ukrainians for now. Also, it turns out Viktor was in Miami to keep "the Colombians" from taking over their traffic, and now, with him gone and the police still raiding them every day, they're brimming with merchandise and have no way to get rid of it. Oh, and Viktor was either Isaak Pullo's son or his more nubile paramour; either way, Isaak Pullo is taking his death very personally. In an effort to get the police off their collective back, Isaak Pullo and Jason Gedrick "convince" a random employee to kill himself and leave a suicide note behind confessing to Soroka's murder; in exchange, Isaak Pullo promises to take care of the guy's family for life. When the police hit his place, Dexter of course knows full well that Viktor was the one that killed Anderson and as such is aware the entire thing is a setup, but Batista, surprisingly, also smells a rat, and resolves to investigate further at the strip club; we put a pin in that for now, but surely Nadia will come into play there.
Apparently MM succeeded in finding one of the new Randall victims, and Hannah shows up to the station, having been advised by her lawyer that she might want to lend a hand in the search for the other two – but also wanting to talk to Dexter about Randall, since she heard that he was the last person to speak with him. This leads to her and Dexter exchanging some wistful words about life, but Yvonne Strahovski got a pretty easy check for this ep.
Finally, Speltzer shows up to his victim's funeral to taunt Deb as payback for the way she got the confession out of him; in a rage, she flies at him. Dexter later shows up to see her, and she's all kinds of ambivalent toward him. Motivated by protectiveness toward Deb as well as… well, all his usual desires, Dexter outwits Speltzer and knocks him out. When Speltzer comes to, Dexter stakes him right in the heart in a way that would make Buffy proud, and then, whether for Harrison, for Deb, or for his own self-preservation, lays his precious blood slides on Speltzer's corpse and sends the whole package into the graveyard crematorium's oven. In the end, Dexter summons Deb to the building so she can see Speltzer's remains float away out of the chimney, and when Dexter asks how she feels, she confesses: "Glad." This is only four episodes in. Where has this show been?
With Dexter part of an MM forensics team going over the mausoleum, DVO talks briefly about how Deb doesn't trust him before we cut to Deb getting into a bath, and I've probably seen dozens upon dozens of screen characters drink wine in the bathtub at one point or another, but beer is a much less common sighting, so I'm impressed to see Deb stick to her drink of choice even here. Back at the mausoleum, Dexter and Masuka are in fact calling my bluff of last episode as they examine the place under an ultraviolet light, but they come up empty for any DNA other than Speltzer's, and Masuka sighs that Speltzer knew what he was doing. Dexter points to the shrine and lets Masuka in on the notion that something was there, and it was probably important. "Killers hate to leave their trophies behind." Masuka notes that that must mean Speltzer came back there after the most recent murder, and then he steps outside so DVO can muse some more about his relationship with Deb, like, there's a lot to come in the ep, so you'll forgive me for opting to get on with it.
From the camera closeup of Deb with her eyes closed and the slightly creepy music, not to mention the fact that there's no other reason to be in this scene, you know Something Bad is about to happen, and sure enough, when she opens her eyes, she sees blood coming out of the faucet. She realizes that she's soaking in the stuff, and then she sees Dexter in the doorway dressed in wedding attire. He holds out his hands and asks if she'll be his, and at first I thought this was about her STILL INCREDIBLY INAPPROPRIATE feelings for him, but now that I think of it, with him wearing his groom outfit, I think it's more likely that she's just imagining herself as Rita. The next time the camera cuts to him, he's holding a bloody machete, and the red stuff positively starts gushing out of the tub and onto the floor. Deb desperately tries to turn the taps off, to no avail...
...and then she wakes up to find the tub ready to overflow, with some jets even springing out of the sides. Well, Deb, it may not be as horrific as what you just dreamed, but plumbing problems are no joke! She looks in the doorway, but Dexter is not there, which is nice, because as I think I might have mentioned, that would be GROSS.
The next day, Deb comes into Dexter's office and summarily is like, "Coffee," and I have to admit I wondered at first if she'd made him her errand boy as part of his debt to her, but no - it looks like "coffee" is her code word for "let's go back to that alley and chat about your little side gig." Outside, Deb FINALLY brings up Rita - as I mentioned in the recaplet, I thought that that would have been one of her first points of discussion with Dexter once she got her head on straight; in fact, I got an email from a reader who was incredulous that she didn't go there immediately. But she's there now, asking Dexter if Trinity killed her, and when he says yes, she lets the ensuing silence hang in the air for a bit until he's forced to reiterate the answer heatedly. Deb explains her suspicions by pointing out that Rita didn't fit Trinity's pattern, but Dexter confesses that that's because he was going after him. Deb's understandably taken aback that Dexter didn't help MM catch him, but Dexter tells her Trinity knew who he was, and he was trying to protect him. And wow, that story would be far from the whole truth even leaving aside the whole "Kyle" business.