Ashby and the IRA come to Jax and Clay with their plan: they've agreed to give Jimmy safe passage to an airfield in exchange for Abel. Clay asks how Jimmy's supposed to know they won't kill him once the baby's been turned over. "There are assurances in place," Ashby says. But the Sons have to agree to the IRA's deal now. Part 1: Kill Jimmy when he ultimately returns to Northern California to complete his business with the Russians. Part 2: The IRA will help SAMCRO "significantly" expand their gun business; full access to their entire arsenal (including RPGs -- God help us all the next time Gemma wants to threaten a nun) AND Jimmy's American contacts. "Means pulling up more charters, creating more alliances, organizing. You think the Reaper is up to that challenge?" Clay says they are. Jax sits by silently as the Club doubles down on the Clay way of doing business.
Maureen is at home, reading one of the many letters John Teller sent her. In this one, he talks about how everything in Charming -- his family, the Club -- seems strange and unfamiliar to him now that he's back from Ireland. "My grief and introspection terrifies them. It drives Gemma mad." Sounds familiar, to be sure. "And Clay's pity has moved into profound loathing. I see my best friend and my wife growing closer and closer." But, John writes, he didn't feel jealous. He felt nothing at all. "Not even fear. And I know I should be afraid." Maureen closes the letter and lies back, anguished. What is with these Ashbys and their intense internalization of Teller family matters?
Jimmy O and Donny pull into the alley to meet with Jax and Ashby. Jax takes his baby back, and Jimmy, being Jimmy, tells him that he wanted Ashby to return the kid as soon as Cameron showed up with him. "He's the one that kept him from his Da. Forced the situation." Ashby doesn't even bother to defend himself this time. I think the sad, sorry results of this grand plan to take out Jimmy (the dead bodies of both Casey brothers, of McGee and Liam, of Chibbs's cousin, or Katie and Mark Petrie) have beaten him down. Jimmy then tells Ashby it's time to go, and Ashby heads to Jimmy's car. Jax is confused. Jimmy says he knows the only way he gets out of this country alive is with a hostage. Looks like Ashby is it. "He's going to kill you," Jax tells Ashby. And instead of telling Jax "Duh-cakes," or something like it, he simply touches Abel's head and wishes him well. After Jimmy drives off, Jax holds Abel close and promises him he'll never let anyone take him again. I guess to reassure us that he's not going to drop him off at the first Child Protective Services he can find in California. Change of heart caused almost entirely by outside influences like Jimmy O and thus negating the genuinely powerful moment when he decided to give Abel up: complete.