Previously on: Aidan led Sally to a ghostly hallway. Josh and Nora got frisky. Aidan made a pint-sized friend, who found his porn stash.
“I Want You Back (From the Dead)”
Sally’s in the hallway. Josh gives our voiceover this week and talks to us about “that awful need to touch someone, be touched … for some of us it won’t die.” Sally is checking the walls in the hospital hallway when she sees a note from Nicholas Fenn: “Mom, Dad – are you out there? I’m by the Charles most days. Come find me.” Josh chimes back in reminding us that Frankenstein’s monster couldn’t stop himself from reaching out and Dracula chose the opposite tactic. Aidan heads into the house and walks by Bernie being bullied, helpless to stop it. Sally wants Aidan to help, he can’t do anything other than watch. Aidan is still watching as Bernie takes a blind step into the road and gets hit by a car. Aidan rushes out, yelling for someone to call 911. The blood doesn’t seem to be affecting him. “It’s you humans who haunt us.” Josh wraps up. “And you won’t let go.”
At the hospital, Sandy, Bernie’s mom is waiting by his bed. She hasn’t slept. Bernie’s organs are failing. She blames herself for not stopping the bullies, for not stopping him from stepping into the road. Aidan wishes he could have done something and when he leaves the room, he goes into a closet and stifles his sobs. Oh, Aidan.
Sally goes to the Charles River and finds Nick Fenn. Apparently, they were at college together. Nick is surprised that she’s dead, too, to which Sally replies, “I like to think of it as Forever 23.” Nick asks her how her trip to India was, but she didn’t go, because of Danny. Nick remembers her going on a tirade against marriage once upon a time. She rebelled against rebelling, she suggests. Sally wants to hang out, but he has to go. He wants her to swing by again, though.
Josh and Nora sit on the couch at the house, watching a subtitled movie about Mongols. Nora’s not into it, but Josh explains, “I’m a sexy nerd, I’m like a living oxymoron.” As Nora heads to get some more popcorn, Josh sees his hands and teeth turning and Nora walks back in and sees and and screams and hey! It was just a dream! They both fell asleep during the movie. The fact that it was just a dream doesn’t seem comforting to Josh, though. The next day, Sally gushes to Josh about Nick “¦ she’s totally crushing on him. She wants to know if it would be weird for her to start dating again, but Josh reminds her of their situation: “I no longer compute what’s weird.” Turns out, Nick was a TA in one of Sally’s classes, so nothing more happened than just long review sessions and coffee. Sally thinks that Nick is who she was supposed to be with, someone who wouldn’t have made her change the way that Danny did. Josh doesn’t think any of them should be in relationships. Moreover, he’s worried about Aidan.
And rightly so, as Aidan heads to the brothel after work. Aidan’s having a time at the brothel. So much so that one of the girls screams because he goes for her neck, resulting in a bouncer pulling him off her. He goes back to the first girl and almost smothers her as she shakes her head no. It takes Rebecca to pull him off this time, reminding him that that’s not who he is. After the brothel’s closed, Rebecca comforts Aidan, who is distraught about Bernie. “He saw me … and he wanted me to help him,” he berates himself. Rebecca suggests that they can save Bernie, but Aidan shrugs it off. He’s going into a dark place, he doesn’t want to “manage” anymore, he doesn’t see the point.
Over lunch, Nora talks to Josh about the theme party thrown by a coworker that they’re both going to, suggesting that they carpool. Josh says that’s a big public move, but Nora shrugs it off as everyone knows that they’re friends, no one would think there’s more to it. After some trademark Josh weirdness, he suggests that they pace it down a little. Nora’s kind of blindsided, thinking that things were going well and pretty slow as is.
Nick takes Sally to a fancy restaurant. He’s got the afterlife thing down … he goes to Sox games, takes Arabic classes, gets spit on by Morrissey in concert. Compared to him, Sally admits she’s a total slacker shut-in of a ghost. She’s never even creeped on naked people, which is like, Ghost 101 (and invasion of privacy, creepers). Nick confides that he spent the first six months crying and haunting his girlfriend. She reveals her college crush on him and Nick tells her she always impressed him. As they start getting close, though, Nick starts coughing and then runs off. When Sally finds Nick in the alley, he’s being suspended in a puddle of some goo and the explodes. Ooookay. Nick finds Sally again later at the park and explains that that’s how he died; he drowned and he relives it every day in some sort of death echo. But he’s come to accept that it’s only five minutes out of his non-life every day and he just moves on with it. They continue their line of conversation from earlier and make it in for the kiss this time. Sally is giddy at being able to feel it.
Aidan, dressed in formal (read: funeral) attire, consoles Sandy as she lashed out at a makeshift memorial outside her steps. Later that day, Rebecca comes to the park for Aidan. She’s worried about him. He says she doesn’t need to be. Bernie’s gone, so Aidan’ll get himself back together. Suddenly, Bernie calls out for Aidan. Rebecca fixed him. Aidan is appalled and, sensing the tension, Bernie finds something to do. “You can’t turn a kid,” Aidan explains, “he has no sense, no impulse control.” Rebecca wants to raise him right with Aidan. Uh-oh, first problem in their little family “¦ Bernie’s missing. He’s sitting on a swing and a little girl offers him a Red Vine. He sees Red, all right and starts to go for her. Aidan gets to him before he can attack her. Aidan tells him that he can never hurt someone. Bernie thinks he’s a superhero now. Superheroes go after bad guys. I think we can all see where this is leading. Except Aidan, apparently, who is shocked when he stumbles upon a crime scene later that day. The two boys who bullied Bernie, according to Bishop, they almost had their heads ripped off, with very tiny teeth. Aidan blames Bishop for turning Rebecca, but Bishop foists the blame back on him.
Sally and Nick are making out all over the place, including the kitchen table, when Josh walks in on them. He’s a little grossed out that their sex cloud is infringing on where he eats. Nick gets ready to leave, but Sally asks if he can try to work through his death echo here. He starts to, but gets embarrassed when Josh comes back in and goes elsewhere to drown. When he comes back, Sally suggests that there’s something causing the echo. Nick admits that he’s hesitant to let go of it: “The only time I remember what it was like to be alive is when I’m dying.” Sally thinks that she’s doing the same thing again and Nick asks her not to compare him to her murderer. Nick is happy that he has her to come back to after the daily echoes, she doesn’t have to fix him. He thinks it’s perfect. Sally says that this is her echo. She loses herself into a guy and his problems; disappears into him. Over and over. I mean, I get what she’s saying, but I for one don’t see the correlation here at all. I think Sally’s looking for an excuse to push people away now.
Josh hears about the kids who were killed and rails on Aidan. He’s appalled that Bernie was turned. “How could you keep this a secret? You only tell me things when it’s … raining down on us.” Aidan reminds him that he confides in him because Josh is his best friend and, yes, things are out of control. He might need to leave for a little bit. Josh confirms that they are best friends, but maybe he should leave. At the hotel, Rebecca is having problems with Bernie. He won’t eat the hospital blood anymore. He doesn’t sleep. He wants to see his mom. She’s going crazy with him and Bernie’s not so even-keeled himself, lunging after Aidan when he tries to stop him from leaving. Rebecca tells Aidan that he needs to quit his job, she can’t do this by herself. Aidan takes Bernie out to find something to eat.
Josh, after seeing Nora flirting with the doctor from a few episodes ago, confronts her that night. Josh doesn’t want her to see anyone else. He explains that he wants to be with her, but there’s something private in his life, about him, that needs to stay that way. Maybe for always. She says she’s not going to be that crazy codependent girl. He reveals that this thing is what broke him and his fiancee up and that he just wants to protect her. She just wants him to let her in. She shows him her scars, literally “¦ all over her stomach. “Let’s just say I didn’t always go for the nice guys.” Josh is shaken by the sight. “I never want to let anything like this happen to you again,” he promises as he hugs her tight. Really, Josh? I mean, I know you’re feeling protective and everything, but if you know that you’re dangerous and you want to keep her away from danger, then that’s the opposite of what you should be doing. Why is no one doing the reasonable, logical thing this week?
Aidan takes Bernie into the woods. He tells Bernie that he’s going to show him how to find and kill a deer. He explains that there’s a way to kill that’s gentle and quick, so it doesn’t hurt. They spot one and Aidan tells Bernie to stay still as he goes after it. Instead, he sneaks up behind Bernie and stakes him.
Aidan is at home when Josh comes home. With tears in his eyes he tells Josh that he took care of it. Josh understands and consoles him “You had to,” as he heads upstairs, leaving Aidan breaking down crying.