‘Scandal’ recap: Keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer

After a long hiatus, ‘Scandal’ returned with an episode that sees all of its characters struggling to keep their secrets buried. If there’s one motto everyone is living by, it’s keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer.

Not one to let a little thing like murder get her down, Sally Langston goes ahead with her plan to run for president. Her announcement sends Fitz’s team scrambling and the president to drunkenly throwing barware at the walls of the oval office. Luckily, his tantrum doesn’t last too long and he announces he’d like to see Andrew Nicholls, the governor of California, as his new running mate. Olivia isn’t sold but Fitz wants an old friend, someone he can trust.

While Pope and Associates research the new candidate, Liv visits her father, who she has learned is no longer in charge of B613. He has not taken his firing well. In the most memorable scene of the night, Rowan explains to his daughter that she is “skipping around in a field full of bombs and mistaking them for daisies.”

A stunned Olivia can only look on in horror when he says “the man who defiled you, also defiled the organization I gave my soul to build”

Rowan is not deterred by the president, he makes it clear he’s out of vengeance.

“The greatest weapon I can use against him, calls me dad.”

He leaves his stunned daughter on a park bench but not before declaring, “Fitzgerald Grant is not going to make it to the end of his term. Start grieving now.”

Knowing there is only one way to quiet the rumors about her husband’s affair, Mellie crafts a lunch with Olivia at a restaurant flagged by paparazzi. She’s all smiles, once Liv arrives.

“I’m making a respectable woman out of you Olivia, my husband could never sleep with you if we’re friends!”

Keenly aware of the press gathering around them, she hands Liv a list of eligible bachelors, telling she has to pick one to quiet the gossip.

Fitz is less than enthused once he hears the news, but Olivia has other things on her mind. Namely, why Jake was chosen to head up B613. His answer? After killing a plane full of people and allowing Olivia’s mother to escape custody (only to have the wanted terrorist kill three more people) he needs someone who can keep his secrets.

Realizing her dream of a life with Fitz is slipping further away, Olivia makes Jake an offer he can’t refuse. Within a day, photos of them kissing have been printed and her secret is buried.

This is important too, because while Nicholls’ background check comes up clean, he may not be entirely trustworthy. It seems he and the first lady have a history, which means the infamous White House love triangle has officially become a square.

That wasn’t all the Gladiators were looking into. While a delusional Sally may have convinced herself that the devil killed her husband, not everyone is buying the story. A reporter becomes aware that Daniel Douglas’ autopsy has been sealed, prompting Abby and Harrison to pay the coroner a visit. When she spins a story about a drunken accident, the camera pulls back to Quinn and Charlie holding the coroners young son hostage in the other room. Quinn hasn’t turned into a full monster yet, we see her stare wistfully out the window, perhaps longing for the days when she donned a white hat.

If Cyrus believes instructing Charlie to keep things covered up is enough, he’s in for a rude awakening. In the episodes closing scenes James meets with David Rosen to inform him that not only is he the leak, but he’s bugged his spouse’s office. David warns him of the dangers of this move, but he isn’t budging.

“My husband is monster David. He thinks he doesn’t have a weakness, but he does, me.”

Stranger still, Harrison spends most of the episode seemingly fearing for his life. He even goes so far as to borrow Abby’s gun for protection. The mysterious Adnan Salif is back in the U.S. and apparently out for his blood. That is, until Adnan shows up at Pope and Associates. Turns out, Adnan is a  female and quite the seductress. Just moments after being held at gunpoint, she’s got him kissing her while she strips him of his clothing.

No doubt, we’ll get more on that next week.

Another duo who will undoubtedly fight dirty? Rowan and Sally Langston’s campaign manager Leo Goldwin. They don’t say much but its clear, whatever they have planned, isn’t good for Fitz.

‘Scandal’ airs Thursday nights on ABC.