With the showcase finally underway, Lucious is nowhere to be found and Cookie can only look for him for so long before she decides to take the stage solo to introduce the world to Lyon Family Management. “Ladies and gentlemen, we are the Lyons,” Cookie tells the adoring crowd. “And tonight, we are proud to introduce to you our family.” With those words, Blake, Hakeem, and Tiana come on stage to perform the song born from Hakeem’s notebook, “One More Minute.” The rivalry that started with a song has now ended in the same fashion. Back at Empire, Giselle storms into Kingsley’s office insisting Becky had nothing to do with the scheme. As Kingsley insists Giselle is also implicated in those “emails,” Lucious storms in himself and immediately starts swinging at Kingsley. Before long, Kingsley’s face turns into a bloody mess and Giselle screams “He’s your son! He’s your son!” to Lucious. With that, the violence stops as Lucious listens to Giselle explain his history and how Kingsley’s the son of “White Tracy.” While Lucious insists it’s impossible, a bloodied and bruised Kingsley looks on and asks, “You want to hit me again, dad?”
Before long, Lucious manages to make his way to Tracy’s hospital room. While looking at a picture of Tracy in better times, Lucious flashes back to his teenage years with her. While handing her a baggy of cocaine, he tells her to slow her roll. “I know what I’m doing, Lucious,” Tracy says before inviting him out for the night. As she walks away, his friends wonder what their deal is; Lucious brushes the talk aside as a young Shyne tells him he needs to focus on one girl instead of juggling many. When we move back to the present, Tracy’s awaken from her coma as if it was just an afternoon nap. She tells Lucious she always knew he’d come back to her. He sounds confused, saying that they hung out a couple times back in the day but that nothing happened. “It doesn’t take more than that,” Tracy says as she urges him to take a look at Kingsley. “You can take a DNA test if you want but just look at my baby’s eyes.” As Lucious looks at a picture of Kingsley on his graduation day with Tracy, she asks him to “tell me that’s not your son.”
After all that “punching your nemesis then finding out he’s your son” business, Lucious finally makes his way to the showcase and meets Cookie backstage. He says he absolutely needs to talk to her but she angrily tells him that they’ll talk at home because she’s got a show to run. As Hakeem, Jamal, Devon, Carlito, and the Three Black Divas perform a supergroup number of their own, Cookie tells Lucious there are $30-$40 million in sponsorship deals on the table before the show’s even finished. But before they can bask in the afterglow of their new creation, Giselle comes in to tell the Lyons that she doesn’t believe Kingsley’s accusations against Lucious and Becky. “What if I told you I could have [Kingsley] out of Empire for good and get you back running the company you built?” she asks, telling them that while LFM is nice enough, “I’m offering you the throne.” But there’s one catch: Giselle would be co-partner in their takeover.
Cookie seems less than receptive to working with her, but Lucious agrees to think about it. Backstage, he tells Cookie the plan seems crazy enough to work, but Cookie wonders if they even want it now given what they have with LFM. While Lucious ponders whether to go back to Empire and reclaim what they built, Cookie puts it in simpler terms. “So we gotta choose between our future and our foundation?” she asks. “Says who?” Referring back to the conversation she overheard between Lucious and Andre, she wonders why LFM can’t be both the label and the management to their artists. Cookie says they can do it with the money they raise tonight and from the $5 million she just made from selling the condo, which she presents to Lucious in the form of a check. “I’m all in with you,” she tells him. “Every step, every penny.”
(Recap continues on next page…)