Sutton gets a taste of what she put Emma through when she has to inhabit Emma's world in Las Vegas. And, boy, if you thought Char was annoying, wait until you get a load of Emma's friend Lexie (that's without mentioning the coterie of freaks Emma eats lunch with). She takes the occasion to go all DIY on Lexie's mom's clothes, steal some of her cash, and gamble with said money at the party of a guy whose car she once keyed. Since this is Sutton, the guy ends up rigging the blackjack game so she doubles her money then letting her go without getting even a little handsy. She catches another lucky break when the orderly from the loony bin finds her number and calls to tell her that Annie has busted out. As Sutton boards a bus back to Phoenix, Lexie lets her know she's wise to her act. She invites Sutton back to Vegas any time and encourages her to work things out with Emma.
Back in Phoenix, Emma overhears Kristin and Ted having an impassioned conversation in which Kristin wants to come clean to "Sutton" that Annie isn't actually dead, and Ted is firmly against. She tries to drill Kristin but is stonewalled -- or so it seems. A subsequent conversation reveals that Kristin is perhaps the most in-the-dark person in the whole equation. So she turns to Alec -- because it's a great idea to ineptly interrogate the person you find most suspicious in the world and consider capable of the unthinkable. She remains safe from Alec for the moment, but then the letter Sutton wrote in juvie arrives. Emma realizes that her time in Phoenix is running out and grows sad that this life she was growing into is slipping from her grasp. To comfort her, Ethan assures her that he will follow her anywhere she goes.
Meanwhile, Kristin learns that Justin and Laurel are having sex and tells Ted, who confronts the horny little hobo. Amazingly, Justin totally turns it on Ted and is all, "I was a terrible person for lying, but you wouldn't know anything about that, Mr. Mercer... Would you?" Though Kristin and Laurel have a heart-to-heart and patch up their relationship, Justin says he's not so comfortable spending time near Ted, who is clearly hiding something.
In also-rans, Thayer has a meeting to score some start-up money for his gaming app, and Mads makes eyes at yet another inappropriate older man (the guy considering giving Thayer the capital). Also, I considered calling this recap "The Passion of the Char" because poor girl can't catch a break. Not only does she get dumped by Derek (because Alec demanded it -- and after a whole 10 days!), she also receives a call from Annie Sewell Hobbs and is reamed out by her mom for taking it. We learn that Annie is Char's mom's sister. And the plot thickens!
Previously: Emma threw herself at Ethan. Emma's foster mom threatened to throw the book at her. Laurel threw herself under Justin. And Sutton threw Emma under the bus.
Las Vegas. Emma's friend Little Orphan Lexie grills "Emma" as she drives her away from juvie. She warns her that Clarice, her foster mom knows "Emma" is back in town and says it's highly unlikely she signed her out of the clink. "Emma" says she needs to get back to California as soon as she can scrape together the money. Little Orphan offers her a place to crash in the meanwhile, for which "Emma" is incredibly grateful.
Phoenix. Ethan surprises Emma, who is immediately apologetic and embarrassed for propositioning him the night before. She admits, "No girls wants be a drunken idiot for her first ti--" then catches herself and immediately rushes out of the room under the pretense that she's suddenly hungry (for sex). She heads into the kitchen, stopping short when she hears Kristin and Ted arguing. Kristin wants to put a stop to the lies they've been telling Sutton about Annie, specifically that she's dead. Ted says it will threaten their newly strong relationship with Sutton, and Kristin walks out of the room dejectedly.
Ted calls Alec, who is driving home from Vegas. Emma picks up the phone to overhear their clandestine conversation. Ted brings Alec up to speed, and Alec advises him to get Kristin under control: "We both know why Sutton can't find out who her birth mother is." Credits.
Emma and Ethan head back into Sutton's room as they try to figure out why Alec and Ted wouldn't want Kristin to know that Annie is Sutton's birth mother. Ethan suggests Emma talk to Kristin to try to figure out everything she knows. Emma resolves to do that and take it a step farther: She wants to approach Alec. Of course Ethan asks, "Seriously?" Of all the boneheaded things they've half-witted folks have done, this might be one of the dumbest. But Emma thinks it's her only chance to get information that will convince Queen Sutton to allow her to stay in Phoenix. Oh, Emma, you're as deluded as you are lovely.
Vegas. Little Orphan Lexie welcomes Sutton to her home and takes a snapshot to commemorate the moment. She continues to give "Emma" the third degree as her mom comes in with a big wad of cash she earned as a casino dealer. She offers "Emma" some macaroni and cheese, which "Emma" accepts with great relief -- until Little Orphan Lexie's mom throws a box at her and tells her where to find the milk and butter.