The opening montage revolved around relationships among staff in the hospital; Meredith's return to the hospital putting her in conflict with potential paramour Nathan and her friend Alex who's recently returned to work himself; followed by Catherine waking up alone at home while Richard woke up in an on-call room at the hospital; and we also saw Owen awake and alone on the couch in his new house while Maggie was waking up a drowsing Amelia who was still crashing on Meredith's couch. Maggie cooked up a plan to get Amelia, who swore she was still on leave, back into the operating room to clip a brain aneurysm on Maggie's patient who also needed heart surgery. Even as Maggie assured her she'd shield her from Owen while she was at the hospital, didn't we all know that would be one promise Grey's writers would be sure Maggie couldn't keep? Especially when we saw Amelia had completed Maggie's requested surgery before the second commercial break?
Maggie continued her sisterly butting-in by encouraging Amelia to realize how good it felt to be back at work. A nervous Amelia agreed but then asked Maggie to check the hallway to make sure it was all clear for her to exit the OR. Soon after Stephanie gleefully greeted Amelia trying to sneak out of the hospital, which got Amelia to the Emergency Room where Owen's trauma department resides. And wouldn't you know it - Owen's patient needed a neuro consult which Amelia jumped in to provide. Was this a sign she was going to be ready to join the fighting that most other characters were involved in during this week's episode? Of course she was, but only to a point.
While Amelia remained all business while scrubbing in, Owen had a tough time keeping his emotions in check. As we heard her say that she was going to try to repair their patient's neuro injuries even though he may be a 'lost cause' we saw the anguish in Owen's eyes flare as he turned to look at her. When he asked if she'd planned on seeing him at all that day and she replied she hadn't, Owen suggested she get another trauma surgeon to assist her. This may be the first time we've seen Owen's emotional reaction push him to consider stepping out of the operating room - so at least we're getting more of his ability to use words and actions to express himself rather than keeping it all inside as he has usually done.
Naturally enough, the surgery wasn't the point other than to get them in close proximity to one another. After their patient died Owen asked about talking to the family and quickly segued into asking Amelia if she wanted to be married to him. While she said that she did, Amelia also said she wasn't ready for the fight to come over their differing feelings about whether or not to have children. While this seemed like an old argument and storyline for Owen, at least he's a more vocal participant this time around.
Elsewhere in the hospital: Alex and Andrew worked on a pediatric cardiac case with Nathan and much bickering ensued; Arizona continued to stand up for Richard which was complicated by him walking in on her with Eliza in the surgeon's lounge; Jackson and Catherine fought and fought and fought; April and Meredith bickered about the general surgery department; Jackson, Richard, April, and Catherine all ended up on the same medical case and spent much of the time hollering at each other; Jo sought out Andrew who still seemed hung up on her; Alex told Meredith what he thought of Nathan; Catherine and April continued to bond; and Meredith approached Nathan to talk which went poorly but lead to him giving her an ultimatum.