While Sutton rots away in Vegas juvie, Travis promises Emma he'll leave if she steals from her (well, Sutton's) friends and family. Anxious to keep her old life from bleeding into the new one, she distances herself from Ethan and from Mads, who has learned that Eduardo was relocated to a new, secret hospital at his mother's behest. Unfortunately, when Emma goes a-thievin' for Travis (only giving him costume jewelry), he decides to seal the deal with a sexual assaultalicious kiss, which Ethan happens to see and totally misconstrues.
Now that Ted and Kristin know about Justin's situation, Ted offers to find Justin a home over the golf club and a job to earn his room and board. He does this under the false impression that Justin was a gentleman with Laurel and half-jokes-mostly-threatens Justin that he'll murder him with one of his very own golf clubs if he founds there's any hanky panky going on. Since their daughters have proven so trustworthy in the past few weeks, Ted decides to take Kristin on a romantic getaway (read: plastic surgeon's conference, ooh la la!) to Sedona. Laurel's first response says it all: "We are so going to blow the roof off this place!" While there, they run into an old associate of Ted's who mistakenly calls Kristin "Annie" and references a rager of a weekend in Santa Barbara. Kristin grows fixated on Annie Sewell (who was Hobbs?) and discovers that someone ripped a page out of the family scrapbook, though she remains ever clueless.
So, while the 'rents are gone, obviously the best thing for Emma to do when she's hiding about a million things at once is to get wasted drunk and play a game of "Never Have I Ever." Emma manages not to reveal anything scandalous to the group, but she does reveal practically all her cards to Ethan when she's all, "Let's just do it already." Travis shows up in the middle of the night to collect some real jewelry and Emma's chastity. Of course Ethan is lurking around, and shortly thereafter -- as Emma puts it -- they're in a Coen brothers movie. Or at least the ABC Family version. As they cart Travis's unconscious ass outside, Emma inadvertently mentions that the phone was ringing right before Travis showed up. They look at the caller ID and piece it together that Sutton is in the twink clink.
Before they can do anything about that, Annie calls Alec to call him out for lying to her all these years that she killed Emma. He feeds her the same old story -- that Sutton is schizophrenic and went off her meds. He tells her to leave Sutton alone because she's with a good family, and Annie should let her have her happy ending. Asks Annie, "What about my happy ending?" A few days later, she turns up missing from the psych ward.
All the while, Sutton gets signed out of juvie by an anonymous benefactor. Naturally Alec is waiting for her when she leaves, but he's scooped by Emma's old friend Lexi, who comes blazing up to juvie and talking at "Emma" a mile a minute about getting back of the swing of things in Vegas. So, Alec is left in the dust as they zoom of into the desert. Undoubtedly to be soon met by Travis, whom Ethan, Thayer, and Emma sent packing with threats of bodily harm should he ever return to Phoenix again.
Meanwhile, Justin is keeping some sort of horrible secret in a shining gold box inside a crate -- because it's always smart to keep things in open-faced carrying case with sparkly lining. Good job, Justin! It turns out to be a bracelet that Justin claims was his mother's, but Ted eyes it with suspicion, so keep your eyes peeled on that one. Also, Justin is keeping a picture of the Mercers in that box.
Previously: Ethan was stuck with his feelings for Sutton. Eduardo was stuck hooked up to a ventilator in a hospital. Sutton was stuck in state care -- first the loony bin, than Las Vegas juvie. Laurel was stuck with having to lose her virginity in a squat. And Emma was stuck fending off the advances of her pervy foster brother, who has tracked her down from Vegas. I'm going to go out on a limb and say Eduardo's the only one with any real problems.
It's morning as we join Sutton at juvie registration. She says princess-like that she needs to make a call, but the officer unsympathetically tells her she'll have to wait until her case worker shows up. Across state lines at Arroyo, Emma's got her own call to deal with as she tells Travis not to come to the high school but to meet her later at a location they've agreed upon. As she hangs up, Ethan approaches to ask if everything's okay. Emma is brusque in her responses, and he wonders why. She tells him obliquely, "Let's just say you can't run from your past." He immediately goes on the defensive, assuming she's talking about his past. She says she's not but won't divulge any more. He tries to offer his help, but the bell rings, and she takes the excuse to blow him off.
Later that afternoon, Mads calls the hospital and learns that Eduardo's been moved to a private location at the request of his mother. Char and Thayer immediately offer their support, but "Sutton" says she's super-busy and needs to leave. Thayer calls Emma out for being a terrible friend, and Emma isn't able to explain herself, so things remain tense.
Emma drives to the rendezvous point with Travis. "I don't give a crap about your little Nancy Drew mystery," he tells her, "I just want a piece of the action." He thinks she should leave the Mercers' door unlocked so he can enter unnoticed and steal from them. Seeing that she has no options, Emma convinces him to let her pull an inside job. Credits.
Mercer house. Laurel is wriggling her way out of the fact that her parents totally found her boinking her boyfriend. In a sleeping bag. In a squat. Laurel tells Ted and Kristin that nothing happened, that Justin was a complete gentleman who made her wait, and that they'll be doing nothing less than crushing Justin's dreams if they report him, and "Sutton" backs her up with some nonsense about some after-school special she saw on street urchins or something. Ted offers to sort something out for Justin so he can stay in Arroyo, and once again Laurel gets off with not even a slap on the wrist. Tell me again why she was so bitter in the first couple of episodes? Sutton may have been the golden child, but Laurel seems to doing all right herself.