Later, everyone's in the sitting room when Matthew tells Edith he's thinking of going to London too, although he could stay at his club. Edith, however, tells him Rosamund would love to have him too and besides, her instincts are telling her she's going to need all the help with Rose she can get. Rose babbles on to the Dowager Countess about how excited she is, while across the room, Branson is telling Cora that his and Matthew's plan will result in them farming a third of the estate directly and they could really use her support, as Lord Grantham will resist. Joining them, Mary mildly asks if they're drawing up battle lines and Cora sighs that "the postwar world has not been kind" to Lord Grantham, but it's pretty clear where their opinions lie at this point. Mary asks how he's finding Jarvis' cottage and Branson says it's perfectly fine, save the part where Jarvis took all the furniture with him, since he happened to own it. Mary suggests they check the attics at Downton, while Cora asks if it won't be lonely for poor baby Sybil. Branson, however, smiles that he thinks the situation is right for both of them and I suppose we can deal with him living a few stone's throws away, given that he was Liverpool-bound in the very recent past.
Thomas is outside sobbing when Mrs. Hughes finds him and tells him it can't be as bad as all that -- with his training, he could apply to be a butler. Thomas realizes she doesn't know everything, then, so she asks if he'll tell her. Obviously wanting to take her up on it, he tells her he's afraid if he does, he'll shock and disgust her and Mrs. Hughes smiles: "I think I have to hear it now." She kindly takes his arm and leads him inside and while I expect some changes to his character after this is all over, I don't have to like Thomas to think Mrs. Hughes showing him some human decency speaks rather well of her.
Isobel finally tells Ethel of the Dowager Countess' opinion that Ethel's history at Downton has left her lonely. Ethel brightly says it's kind of the Dowager Countess to concern herself and you can practically feel Isobel clench as she goes on that it isn't just that -- she's worried about the gossip as well, so she placed an ad for her. She hands over the responses as she concludes that Ethel could go to a new position with references from both her and Mrs. Hughes, and as such she could forget about her earlier life. Ethel looks like she doesn't know how to react, which is understandable. I mean, she hasn't even read the letters yet. What if the Dowager Countess' ad said she'd work as a chimney sweep?