On the edge of the crowd, Mary waits. Eric walks over. "It wasn't your fault, Eric," she tells him quickly. "You don't have to do this." Yes, he does, because he needs to stop being a useless weenie. Eric says he can't be there right now. Mary hugs him, but even though Eric lowers his head against hers, he doesn't open his arms to her. Coldplay's "Till Kingdom Come" plays.
Eric says goodbye to his family. Mayor Dad shakes his hand, but Jake gives him a full-on embrace. They hang on for quite a few seconds, actually. Then Jake pulls back, wraps his hands around the back of Eric's head, and makes him look at Jake: "Be strong," he says. Finally, Eric hugs his mom and cries. "I'm sorry, Mom," he says. She tells him, "We'll take care of Mary." Oh, she'll take care of her all right -- a little tender loving hemlock! What? I'm trying to counter these easy tears with jokes, okay? They hug again. April must be dead, because Eric wouldn't leave town if she were still alive and recovering.
The family Green, plus Mary, all stand apart from one another as they watch Eric walk off. Jake's face tightens, and he limps quickly over to Russell. He puts a hand against Russell's chest, stopping him: "My dad told me what's happening -- first you're helping us and now this. What the hell is going on?" Russell promises that everyone will be fine; he'll look after them: "You have to trust me on this." "'Trust'?!" Jake growls, holding him back once again. "This isn't me," Russell bites out. "Where's Heather?" Jake finally thinks to ask. Russell swears she's fine; she didn't want to come. "If anything happens to any of them, you're the first one I come for," Jake promises. Russell takes this in: "I know." Seriously, dude, don't fuck with Jake. Ever. Because he's Jake. Russell gets onto the low-slung truck bed, and they take off. Jake stares after them worriedly. I think Jericho needs to set up a series of cans and strings with New Bern so they can call them up whenever they want.
Next week: the Branch Rogerians hole up in their compound, and Mayor Gray gets shot! Oh, I can't believe I'm missing it. But I'll be out of town, and the ever-fabulous Couch Baron will be stepping into our little apocalyptic world.