Written by Scott Brown
Directed by Jean-Marc Vallée
The Crellin house is dark and quiet. Camille Preaker approaches the dollhouse, which lights up on its own. She bends to get a closer look and sees a figure drift past. She jolts awake: It was a dream. Camille sees Adora Crellin by her bedside. She changed Camille’s clothes while she was asleep and attempts to care for her swollen ankle. Camille dismisses her mother.
Before Camille leaves the house, she stops by Amma Crellin’s room. Amma, hungover, tinkers with her dollhouse: “You know what my favorite part about getting wasted is? Mama takes care of me after.” Amma tells Camille that John Keene will be arrested soon.
Camille drives past the Wheelers and sees Chief Bill Vickery and the police conducting a search. Ashley Wheeler tells Vickery that John went for a drive and hasn’t come back. Vickery coaxes Ashley to give up information about her boyfriend’s whereabouts. She considers: “You mean my name in the paper?”
Detective Richard Willis, meanwhile, visits a methadone clinic to see Nurse Beverly. “I got your name from Jackie O’Neill,” he says. “She said you might know something about a Marian Crellin.” Nurse Beverly tells Richard that Marian “got passed around” to different doctors and was diagnosed with symptoms of Crohn's Disease, respiratory problems, heart palpitations and more.
Nurse Beverly clues Richard in on Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome and describes it as a mental illness in adults: “It’s when you make someone else sick. So you can care for them. So you can save them or… try. Be seen trying.” Nurse Beverly went to the police, she explains, who did nothing. She was fired by the hospital where Marian was a patient. The nurse suggests Richard look into the “other” daughter.
Back at the Crellin house, Amma refuses Adora’s care. She admits she’s just hungover. Adora blames Camille, but Amma sticks up for her sister. Adora makes Amma feel guilty and threatens to take away her dollhouse. Amma succumbs to Adora’s care.
Richard meets Vickery at a diner. Allegedly, a Preaker Farms worker told police they saw John dump Ann’s bike into the farm’s lagoon at midnight. Richard doesn’t think it’s true because the witness’ timelines don’t match. Vickery is relieved they can make an arrest. He also tells Richard that Ashley told police about the blood under John’s bed. Richard brings up Marian and Nurse Beverly, which causes Vickery to storm out.
Camille drives to the less-affluent side of Wind Gap to get a drink. She sees John Keene. “Thought I’d have one more drink or two before I get arrested.” The two drink together and bond over the fact they’ve both lost their little sisters. Camille tries to get him to tell his story and defend himself. He mocks her then reveals that when Natalie was found, her fingernails were painted: “Natalie would never do that.” After he tells Camille he didn’t kill Natalie, he tells Camille that she is “beautiful.” She replies, “So are you.”
Richard retrieves Amma’s medical files while Camille helps John check into a motel. Vickery gets an alert that Keene is at the motel and speeds to arrest his witness. Kelsey and Jodes, meanwhile, roller skate to the Crellin house. Adora tells them Amma is sick and shoos them away. Amma asks Adora if she wants her to stay young so she can be like Marian. “You are like Marian,” Adora replies. Amma disagrees: “I’m not as good.” Adora takes away her cellphone.
In the motel room, John notices Camille’s scars. “Nobody sees,” she says. “I do,” he whispers. As he undresses her, he reads the words carved into her skin. She starts to cry but let’s him kiss her all over. They have sex.
Camille and John lie together. Camille notices bite marks on his forearm: “Natalie do that?” John tells Camille the only person in Wind Gap who “gave a sh*t” about Natalie was Adora. He says Ann and Natalie both got physical with Adora but Adora didn’t give up: “Like she was gonna solve them.” Just then, Vickery and Richard kick open the motel room door. Richard is shocked and gravely disappointed to see Camille with John. Vickery arrests John. Richard tells Camille the blood found under John’s bed was Natalie’s. He leaves her with Marian’s medical file.
Camille drives to Jackie’s house and tells her she saw Jackie’s name all over Marian’s file: Jackie requested information but was continuously denied. Jackie reveals that Marian’s body was cremated. Camille storms out and calls St. Louis Chronicle editor Frank Curry. His wife Eileen Curry answers the phone: “Sweetie, you’re not hurting yourself, are you?” Curry gets on the phone and Camille tells him: “My mother did it.”
As she speeds home, Camille flashes back to when Amma was a baby and Adora bit her: “God’s given me another sick baby.” Camille also envisions Adora as the “Woman in White” from James Capisi’s witness account. He said the “Woman in White” grabbed Natalie.
Vickery sees Kelsey and Jodes skate through town. He asks where Amma is. “Her mama wouldn’t let her out. She’s sick.” Alan puts on his headphones and flashes back to a time when he and Amma danced in the hallway. In the present, he seems upset. Camille pulls up the driveway to the Crellin house and parks.