Alex is gutted, hanging in the hallway when Meredith finds him and he reports that Mr. B. is okay. She asks about Emile and Alex repeats dully that Derek said there was nothing they could have done, and then hands her the money. She thinks that he won but neither of them actually want the now-tragic $50, and Mere tells Alex that he would have won anyway. He's not sure but Mere says simply that she has a husband, and seems to have reached a peace with what Mrs. Banks told her earlier. Teddy then comes in and asks her to scrub in for a valve replacement, but Mere thinks and looks at her watch, hesitates, and then asks if Cristina could do it instead. Over a shot of Teddy's surprised face, she VOs, "We have to keep reinventing ourselves. Almost every minute.
"Because the world can change in an instant." One of those instants is now for Mrs. Banks, who is watching her husband sleep when Alex comes up and sadly reports that they did all they could but that Emile died. This is definitely a more emotional Alex than we usually see with patients, and he sincerely tells her that he's sorry. She thanks him with tears in her eyes and when he leaves, breaks down completely with her back to her husband so he won't wake and see. Mere adds, "And there's no time for looking back."
Frankie is supremely pissed that there's a hoard of doctors outside his door who want to stare at him, but Lexie decides to take a different approach, one that shows some understanding that having one's arm sewn to one's leg would be a pretty crappy situation. She agrees that they want to see him and ask questions because he's rare and special, and then adds that there might also be press, and that there's a lawyer there as well who thinks that the restaurant might owe him a lot of money. This gives Frankie a new perspective, and after a moment asks how much. She just smiles and asks, "Sometimes change is good, right?" He smiles at her, his arm-leg forgiven.
Mark walks into his place and when he sees Callie with the crib, thinks that she's rebuilding it for him. She looks scared, and comments that she wanted to do this before he got home, but he is too happy to read her expression and tells her sincerely that she didn't have to do this and he also isn't going to hold her to the offer to help raise the baby. She stands up and says his name, but he just smiles and asks if she thinks this is kind of great. There's a slight hitch behind his smile though, like maybe a little part of him recognizes that this is all about to go horribly wrong. Callie pulls two pieces of the crib apart, and his face drops like a lost child and he asks what she's doing. Tears pool in his eyes as she tells him to sit down, as Mere explains, "Sometimes the changes are forced on us.
"Sometimes they happen by accident." Lexie walks up to Alex and takes one of the Valentine's chocolates, and he watches her as she bites into it. She notices his staring and grouses at him to get used to the hair because she's keeping it. Newly Emotional Alex is also now supportive, and says that he thinks she should because she's moving on, and he didn't think it was a bad change in the first place. They both gripe about hating Valentine's Day, and as Mere adds, "And we make the most of them," they make the most of the situation and start making out and ripping off each others' clothes in the supply closet.
Owen and Cristina are walking out -- she might hate Valentine's Day, but she's clearly enjoying a schmoopy cuddle with her hot boyfriend. Teddy stops them and asks if Owen has a minute, but when Cristina offers to wait outside Teddy tells her to stay and then announces bluntly that she told Owen she loves him and knows she can't unring the bell, but that she's taking it back. Cristina starts to insist she'll wait elsewhere but Teddy manically insists she stay, knowing that this is the only way Owen will possibly hear what she has to say. She tells him the same thing she did earlier, that she misses her friend, and says that she can deal with everything else because she's got a cottage and a great job and an amazing student in Cristina. She clearly means it, too -- she's not just blowing smoke to try and smooth things over. She announces that they are going to be friends and tells Cristina she's about to do a valve replacement. Cristina's jaw drops and then she happily runs off to prep. Mere VOs: "We have to constantly come up with new ways to fix ourselves." Owen, still uncomfortable talking to her, tells her she can't unring the bell but she assures him happily that she knows, "But I'm gonna try like hell."
"So we change. We adapt." Mere, in one of her biggest adaptations to date, has changed into a sexy Mrs. Chief in a grey sweater dress and black belt. Derek has been shaking hands and is surprised and clearly super happy to see her, but says she didn't have to come. She's happy to see his smile and insists that she chose to come and then takes his arm to go inside -- her smile falters when she sees the sign for the brunch honoring "Dr. and Mrs. Shepherd."
"We create new versions of ourselves." She manages to hold on to her hissyfit until they are in the car, and she morphs back into Old Meredith and screams about being known as "Mrs. Shepherd." Derek knows, and just agrees with everything she says while she changes back into her scrubs and yells that she doesn't do brunch, or Valentine's Day, or miss surgery. After that's out of her system, she gets a gleam in her eye and informs him that he is going to have to make up for this with lots of sex, and he replies dutifully, "Yes, dear." She concludes, "We just need to be sure that this one is an improvement over the last." Well, and be sure it sticks, even a little, as I feel like we're now due for a whole lot of Meredith regressing and rebelling against being any sort of traditional wife.