Joel helps repair broken floors and his broken relationship, Hank is there for Amber when she gets news about an injured Ryan, and Kristina is left to grieve over a sweet and important friendship in her life. This was an emotional and telling episode leading in to next week's
Kristina, Adam, Julia and Mr. Knight go to the site of the new charter school to take selfies and discuss the future of their plans. Julia is made uncomfortable by her reunion with Mr. Knight after their night together, but is wise to keep those feelings hidden given the past issues with Crosby and Max's behavioral aid.
Kristina gets a call from Gwen's sister to say that Gwen is dying. Gwen was Kristina's buddy and rock through chemotherapy and has been a delight through the seasons. Kristina goes to her bedside to talk to her about the school. Though Gwen never fully wakes up, it is clear that she has heard some of what Kristina has said and it is such a heart-wrenching moment.
After an appeal to Bob Little for the charter school space, Kristina is sure that she and Adam will get the space for the school. Then Kristina gets word that Gwen has passed away, and in a gut-wrenching scene, asks all the questions that any surviving friend would ask about why she was spared when her friend wasn't and it is awful and I am sobbing.
Finally, Kristina receives a gift from Gwen in the form of a tree and a donation toward the school, indicating that she had heard Kristina after all and believed in her dream. Kristina and Adam agree to name the school after her and I am a weepy puddle on the floor.
Hank The Hero
Max and Amber get into a confrontation about a schedule change and we see Max throw a big fit about it. Hank eventually helps Amber manage the situation by appealing to Max and his need for compromise, much to Amber's relief.
When she brings Max around to the studio again, Hank sees her fall to the ground outside and follows her to ask what happened. She tells him that something happened to Ryan and he is in a hospital in southern California, hours from where they currently live. Hank can see that Amber is too upset to drive and offers to drive her instead, winning the sweet weird, mom's ex-boyfriend award.
Sarah shows up at the ER after Amber and Hank are forced to wait for hours with no status update. We finally see Hank being the sweet guy that we know him to be and Sarah is really impressed and taken aback by the fact that Hank was there for her daughter.
In the last minutes, we see Amber reunited with an injured Ryan. They both cry, Sarah cries, we all cry, watching their reunion and hope for I don't even know what at this point.
Crosby asks Joel for a second opinion to help him with mold and floor. Joel initially refuses his help in an effort to keep the boundaries clear. Joel discusses the issue with Pete, who admits to sending Joel as many signals as possible and ultimately advises him to follow his family man ways.
Joel shows up at Crosby's to help him with the floor and they end up in a heartbreaking and sweet conversation about their families. It is clear that Joel is yearning for some normalcy, but also has no idea how to heal the wounds between him and Julia.
Crosby, Jasmine and their kiddos get to move back in to their house, which is a welcome relief after the past several weeks.
Julia admits to Sarah about sleeping with Mr. Knight and in the same breath says how in love she is with Joel, which is a good sign, but may be too little too late. Julia also goes to Mr. Knight to tell him that their evening together was a one night thing, which he totally understands.
When Joel shows up at their home to talk with Julia after his time with Crosby, it is clear that things have shifted between these two, but I'm still not convinced it is irreparable. Here's hoping, anyway.
Drew and Natalie Figure It Out
Drew has a variety of outbursts at Natalie due to her attempt to resolve things between them. He also listens to a bizarre array of music from ambient ocean sounds to classical songs, which is distracting and hilarious.
In the end, after Natalie agrees that she slept with Drew's roommate because she was mad at Drew for the way he treated her when Amy arrived, they end up together. Hooray that these two have finally resolved things because I am ready to move on.
We get a glimpse on next week's season finale that welcomes the return of the maybe lesbian Haddie and the official reunion of Sarah and Hank.