Finally, Owen decides to check his messages. The first is from Dr. Sheehan in Boise, double-checking what time his surgeons were supposed to arrive. Callie, meanwhile, puts on her new sexy knickers and crawls into bed, posing herself to look seductive and perfect when Arizona comes through the door. I'm sorry, but if you are going to do that, you have an inkling of when the person is getting home. Especially if air travel is involved. ESPECIALLY if surgery is involved. There is no way she'd just assume Arizona was going to walk in the door at an absolutely specific time without double-checking somehow. And another message from Dr. Sheehan starts to play, telling them there is still no word, so she's going to check with the airport and see if the weather held them up.
At a fancy restaurant, a waiter pours champagne for April and the others. (Richard's glass holds water.) He asks if there was any word from Mere or Cristina and Alex tells him that their plane was supposed to land an hour ago. And again, do you not then check to make sure that plane has landed before you start to order? It was conjoined twin surgery -- I mean, all surgeries can unexpectedly take longer than planned, but ESPECIALLY something so delicate and complicated as that. People, you did your own conjoined twin surgery just a few months ago and there were plenty of complications to go around! And then are we seriously supposed to believe that Dr. Sheehan of Boise was just like, "Oh well, those girls have lived together this long, I guess we'll just wait another day because Dr. Hunt isn't answering his phone." NO. This is RIDICULOUS. She or someone on her staff would have tried, oh, the general hospital number and asked to speak to someone else. Richard holds up his glass and the others quickly follow suit, and he tells them that each year he likes to tell the residents a secret that will help them get through all of their future challenges. After a moment, though, he decides that they should wait for Meredith and Cristina before he goes on, and they all put their glasses back down. At the hospital, Owen finally starts to pay attention and look worried when he hears Dr. Sheehan's third message admitting that she's starting to get concerned. I just cannot suspend my disbelief enough to think that they could go all day and into the night with no indication that something was incredibly wrong.
And out in the forest, things are pretty damn wrong. Everyone is bundled up as best they can -- at least they had those big Seattle Grace jackets but they all have on random layers of extra clothing as well to try and keep warm. Arizona is still coughing, while Mark seems only slightly conscious. Meredith and Cristina are huddled together in front of a tiny fire, and Cristina can't focus on anything but how hungry she is. Mere offers to split the single stick of gum she has, but Cristina isn't interested. After a moment, the fire goes all the way out, and Mere starts to doze off. Cristina yells at her to stay awake and then calls out louder to the entire group that they all have to remain conscious. Derek doesn't seem to be complying as his response is to mumble, "Boats." Ah, so the ferry boat obsession is still alive and well, then. Cristina hands Mere a match and reminds her to be careful since this is the last one. Mere strikes it, but immediately the air blows the teeny flame right out again and with that, their hope seems fairly well snuffed out too. Mere pulls out her stick of gum and tears it in half, and Cristina takes her piece without a word. In voiceover, Mere repeats Richard's first words to them as residents: that their years as residents will be the best and worst of their lives. They will be pushed to the breaking point. This is the starting line, and this is their arena. "How well we play, that's up to us." The girls lean in to each other, miserable, and season eight draws to a close.