Written by Anthony King
Directed by Matt Ross
Feeling pressure from Jian-Yang Chinese version of Pied Piper, Richard presses Monica about raising money with a Series B round to beat Jian-Yang to market. Monica assures Richard a cease and desist letter will scare him off, and because Laurie has installed herself as temporary CEO of Eklow to deal with the disappearance of Ariel and Fiona, their AI robot, discussing a Series B is out of the question.
Richard confronts Laurie at Eklow’s office; feeling overwhelmed as interim CEO she vomits into a waste basket. Empathizing with Richard, she apologizes for treating him unfairly.
“It was like God was coding through me.” — Dinesh
Gilfoyle mocks Dinesh for being the last of the 47 engineers finish their code sprint. Dinesh claims he is the tortoise and Gilfoyle is the hare — he may have been last to finish, but his code will have the fewer errors. To Dinesh’s disappointment, Jared explains that as senior management, their review must remain confidential.
Feeling bad for Laurie, Richard decides to give her free Pipernet compute credits; he tells the guys it will get them on her good side to secure the Series B. Jared encourages Richard to remove his emotions from this business decision. He explains since being named COO he’s been practicing “emotional abstinence” and pulling away from Richard emotionally for the good of the company.
“I am available. But not emotionally, obviously.” — Jared
Dinesh bullies Danny into admitting that his code had fewer errors than Gilfoyle’s. Dinesh announces his win to the entire office. Finally having the upperhand, Dinesh spends the entire day insulting Gilfoyle. The next morning Gilfoyle reveals he struck a deal with the other coders: If they told Dinesh he won, he would take “24 hours to cobble together over 200 uniquely terrible insults.” Danny states the results will stay confidential.
Gavin visits a Hooli factory in China to monitor production of the Signature Box III. In a car leaving the factory, their driver hits a biker. Gavin notices the biker is wearing a Pied Piper T-shirt. He orders the driver to follow him and they are led to Jian-Yang’s office. Jian-Yang modified Richard’s code to meet Chinese government regulations, and Gavin realizes it’s different enough that Richard’s patent won’t cover it. He offers Jian-Yang $100,000 for the code but Jian-Yang calls Gavin’s bluff: “I’m not going to sell you my code until I know why you want it.”
“Being a CEO is a terrible waste of time and a horrible way to make a living.” — Laurie
Danny informs Richard that Laurie sold the free compute credits. He goes to confront her, furious at her lack of consideration for his generosity. She explains the decision was financially motivated, noting he needs to work on emotional discipline.
Richard arrives back at Pied Piper to find Fiona in a taxi — aside from her creator, he’s the only human she’s had contact with. He devises a plan: He will return Fiona to Laurie in exchange for signed Series B term sheet.
The next day, Richard notices Jared outside with Fiona. He admits to having an all-night, 12-hour conversation with the robot; Richard implies Jared needed release from his “emotional abstinence.” Despite Jared’s reluctance, the duo take Fiona back to Eklow. Laurie immediately orders for Fiona to be broken down and sold for parts — leaving Jared horrified and heartbroken.