Sweet tap-dancing Jesus, another mad guy in a suit! Max goes back out to the convertible, where said suited man introduces himself as "Agent Burns of the FBI." And I was so taken aback to have the FBI back into things that for a minute I thought that Burns was the exact same name of the FBI henchman from season one (Pierce). BurnsPierce asks Max why he chose Sam's place. Sing it, BurnsPierce! I too am getting a little tired of everyone picking on Sam. Max volleys that his case was dismissed, and BurnsPierce sternly warns, "By the Sheriff's Office, maybe. I'm gonna give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you're just an incompetent criminal. But if you were in that store for any other reason, be warned. If you don't stop, you will not be happy juvenile delinquents." I love how everyone just keeps telling them to "stop." What does that even mean?
But no. Max does not stop. He returns to the convenience store, the voices of this episode flashing back in his head again because flashbacks of flashbacks within flashbacks and it's all so meta and ouch my head just exploded. He returns in silence to the basement of the Quik-E-Mart, finding no spaceship downstairs, but instead a patch of white powder. Merry Mason follows him in, smirks, and delivers his single longest speech in show history: "I followed you here, because I can no longer trust you to tell me the truth. I thought you were involved in drugs, but this is clearly something else. What were you looking for down here, Max? What is this place?" Is it one of the five government storerooms large enough to house a spacecraft, the size of which you never seemed to know before now? Is that it? Is that what it is? IS IT? WHAT? And then, the twist ending. Merry Mason goes to pick up the powder, but Max tells him it "could be toxic." Merry Mason asks why there would be a toxic chemical in the basement of a convenience store (that isn't rat poison, or a surplus of those circus peanuts, or a renegade pack of Necco wafers, of course), suddenly adopting that "hey, waaaaait" face and spinning, "If this is what you think it is, we might be able to help Liz." What? Does he suddenly not care anymore why Max was in jail for armed robbery to begin with? WHAT?
Okay, we're outside. Merry Mason and Max do some underhanded dealing. BurnsPierce pulls up and gets out of a white car, telling Merry Mason, "We tested the so-called toxic chemical you submitted to the Sheriff and it turned out to be laundry detergent." Max shoots back, "We did our own test, and it turned out to be Tetrol." If I'm the public or the press or the courts, I'd be all, "Thanks, I'll go with the FBI's findings over the kid with the chemistry set on Take Your Dad To Work Day, thanks." Max adds, "We're sure there are any number of people in the media who would be extremely interested to find out why such a dangerous chemical was found underneath a convenience store." Merry Mason piles on, "And even more interested to find out that the location was on federal property." I don't know what kind of pussies they're training at the FBI these days, but were I BurnsPierce, it would be my professional responsibility to shoot back, "Because you planted it there, guy who is trying to blackmail me into getting his girlfriend/client spring from the clink. Idiots." But the lawman folds, and we cut to Liz being released due to what Julianne Less has learned is "improper conduct with the arresting officer." Liz is happy, but only until Slackjaw tells her that Liz is prohibited from seeing Max ever, ever again. Poor, poor dear. Outside, meanwhile, Merry Mason tells Max he needs to know why Max needed to get into that room to begin with. But Max won't tell. "Silence," Merry Mason responds, "is unacceptable. Not under my roof." Ooh! He tossed Max from the house. The lightweight Van Morrison on the soundtrack is sadder than anyone else to hear that. Max and Liz pass each other on the way to their respective cars. In a final shot, Max falls asleep in his. Tetrol? WHAT?