...and then we're at the dinner, at which Herb's wife is babbling vacuously about shopping and whatever, and I could give specifics of why Marie is staring couteaux at her, but the fact that her name is "Peaches" probably gives you sufficient explanation. Herb winds up her story by telling the room what he always says when she comes home from a shopping spree -- "How much damage didya do, Peaches?" -- but while Megan laughs, Marie looks like she's getting ready to brain the entire table with one swing of a wine bottle. Watch out as soon as she gets to the bottom, people. Of course, her foul mood has its roots in the fact that Roger is not there. I have the feeling he got so swept up in his machinations with the Detroit guy that he forgot to call and tell anyone about it because I cannot believe for one second he'd let Don and Herb in the same room without at least some Accounts presence there. Speaking of which, Don returns to the table and admits he didn't get hold of, as Herb calls him, "Silver Bells," so Herb says he's done waiting, whereupon Marie starts to exit so fast that you'd see a dust cloud if not for Megan explaining that they're not leaving -- they're simply going to go ahead and order. Peaches explains that "Herb gets very peckish," and after Herb gruffly adds that he skipped lunch, Marie looks wide-eyed with shock that no one's going to touch that one.
Bertram comes into Pete's office and, after settling in on the couch with a self-satisfied sigh, informs Pete that he did a great job in getting the company ready for this day -- and the valuation came in at $11 a share, so it's only due diligence in their way now. I can think of another word beginning with "D" between them and wads of cash, but Joan already made that point for me. For now, though, Bertram requests a celebratory drink, and after Pete fails to come up with brandy or "spirits of elderflower," Bertram settles for whatever Pete gives him. Benson then passes, bidding Pete goodnight, but Pete asks him if he might fetch Joan and some ice, and obviously you know he's going to have no problem with that. Pete then asks Bertram when they'll break the news, and it was convenient for the Benson point but you'd think someone would have closed the door here, and Bertram tells them to call the meeting for the next day. Pete swigs his drink in one gulp, and it's not like he knows to fear anything, but this is where the bad things start.
Speaking of chugging alcohol, Marie is opening her throat as if Roger were actually present for her glass of wine, unable to stop hate-watching Peaches, who drones on about their dog giving unexpected birth, at which point Marie reaches for the bottle again and can't restrain herself from telling Megan in French, "Listen to this idiot." Peaches is momentarily thrown by the language change, and I was wondering if the kick was going to be she actually speaks French -- it wouldn't be the most obscure coincidence in history. But Peaches gets back to her story, and although Don manages a reasonably sincere-sounding "I love puppies," Marie makes me realize I mined her for a joke earlier when she offers to break the empty bottle over Peaches' head. In my defense, it would have seemed like something she'd do even if I hadn't seen it already. Whether Peaches notes the venom dripping from Marie's mouth or not, she suggests the women go to the powder room so the men can discuss their business.