Chapter Eighty-Six
Credit: Richard Foreman, Jr./The CW

Running away seems like a logical answer when life hands you lemons, right? Poor Jane is not only dealing with Michael’s memories returning but now she has a son who hates her guts and a sort-of-fiancé who has just kicked her out of the apartment.

And if that isn’t enough, Rogelio has decided to throw Jane a stellar 30th birthday party, complete with signature cocktails (Jane and tonic) and a real live unicorn. Jane is in no condition to celebrate and instead chooses to relentlessly call Rafael.

Alba reminds Jane that there is an ice sculpture in the shape of her face. She has to go to the party. Jane also has to meet with her editor Marlene to discuss her next book which has a total of zero pages written. After plucking a grey hair from her scalp, Jane somewhat agrees.

Between taste testing cakes and figuring out how to procure a real live unicorn, Rogelio schedules some much-needed quality time with Baby. Darci and Esteban whisk into the house and when Esteban hands Baby over to Rogelio, she begins to scream. Rogelio is concerned. His precious baby girl has bonded with his arch nemesis. Rogelio mentally vows to do something about it.

Rogelio’s other baby girl is also crying. Jane does that a lot nowadays. You see, Michael knocks on Alba’s door just as Rafael and Mateo drive up. Jane rushes Michael into another part of the house so Rafael and Mateo won’t get the wrong impression. Mateo has come to get a castle for Show and Tell. When he tries to go to his room to get it, Jane wraps him in a hug. But she can’t stop Rafael from waltzing past her into Mateo’s room and coming face-to-face with the man who is responsible for his current crappy life.

Mateo runs in moments later, sees Michael, and vows to hate him and Jane for the rest of his life. Both Mateo and Rafael escape the awkward moment, leaving Jane to deal with her tears and frustration in front of her once deceased husband. She begs Michael to leave, but he hands her several more lemons in the form of some disturbing news.

Michael’s life insurance company found out that he’s alive and they automatically assumed he faked his own death to commit insurance fraud. All he has to do is prove that he was presumed dead for real or they owe the company $40,000.

Jane is dumbfounded. Michael helps lighten the load by suggesting they provide documentation that proves everyone thought he was dead. Then he offers to pay half of whatever is owed at the end of the day. Way to turn those lemons into lemonade, Michael!

Later, Jane meets Rafael to explain what happened. Even though part of her loves Michael, she chooses Rafael. Unfortunately, Rafael has been around Jane long enough to know she will not be satisfied unless she explores those feelings. And he doesn’t want to hang around while she tries to figure things out. He’s been there before and doesn’t want to go back.

As Rogelio’s first little girl cries her eyes out, so does the second one. Esteban takes the screaming child into his arms and bounces her into the other room. This is when Darci asks Rogelio to please let Esteban have this “win” since he’s not succeeding anywhere else in life.

Rogelio is shocked to learn that Esteban doesn’t have a job. He’s been struggling for a while and is essentially a stay-at-home dad. Rogelio acts his heart out, promising Darci he will be more sensitive in the future. Then he takes out his phone. Just when you think he’s going to tell the Twitterverse that Esteban is Esta-over, he makes a call. Asking his agent to get Esteban a job. In Mexico.

Rogelio isn’t the only one playing sneaky tricks. Petra learns that her ex Milos has been wreaking havoc on the inner workings of the Marbella. As an Internet con-man, he can do that. He can also hack into Petra’s email account, causing all sorts of problems for Petra’s (pending) relationship with JR.

Petra is determined to prove that Milos is behind everything going wrong in her life. She pulls up the security camera footage during the time she allegedly sent a scandalous email and is annoyed to find that Milos has scrubbed her out of the shot. Knowing that firing Travis caused quite a scene that day, Petra is happy to see that Jane was a witness! She will attend Jane’s birthday party and get the proof she needs to show JR that she’s not a liar.

Meanwhile, Jane finally catches up with Marlene and fills her in on all of the crazy details from the past weeks. Marlene thinks this is Jane’s next story! Although Jane is not on board for a manuscript, she does agree to write down all of her feelings as if she is an observer. Marlene instructs her to be dispassionate, detached, and objective.

Jane gives it a try as she waits for Mateo after school. When her kid stomps up to the car, Jane tries to have a conversation with Mateo. Instead of listening, he runs away toward traffic. Jane frantically catches up with the little sprinter beside a gas station. Then Mateo starts shouting, “DO NOT TOUCH MY BODY!”

Concerned gas pumpers rush to Mateo’s aid as he continues to yell, “STRANGER DANGER.” Jane is equally crushed and mortified by her son’s behavior. She shows pictures on her phone to prove to the rescuers that this is indeed her son and hoists his limp body into her hands. Mateo has definitely mastered the fact that going “kicking and screaming” is not as effective as making the adult maneuver dead weight.

Jane writes all of her feelings down before taking him home. When Rafael opens the door, Jane fills him in on what their son just did. Rafael cooly implies that Mateo has had a rough couple of days and deserves a pass. The five-year-old grins at his mother. A small victory for a small, but powerful person.

That evening, Jane sits in front of a pile of evidence that proves Michael’s death. Michael smiles at Jane’s attention to detail during his funeral and promises that they will get through this ordeal together. He’s willing to take out a loan if needed. Jane promises to cut back on vacations. Michael laughs, knowing the woman next to him hasn’t taken a vacation in her life. Jane flips over one of the documents and begins frantically writing down her observations. Objectively, of course.

While Michael marvels at Jane’s dedication to her craft, Rogelio worries about Darci’s sudden change in attitude. He notes that she’s wearing her “rage face” and inquires what circumstance put her in such a bad mood.

A breakup, that’s what. Esteban took a job in Mexico and left Darci and Baby. I was proud of Rogelio for immediately admitting that he was the one who made the phone call. However, Darci doesn’t seem to care. The fact remains that Esteban left. Rogelio’s jealousy shined a light on Esteban’s true feelings for Darci.

Rogelio agrees to wait for Esteban to bring over some of Baby’s things so Darci doesn’t have to interact with him. Esteban is a hot mess. It seems that he comes from a broken home and didn’t want Baby to grow up feeling abandoned. So he removed himself from the equation.

Rogelio has one question for Esteban: Do you love Darci? When Esteban answers in the affirmative, Rogelio agrees that he should make up with Darci. Then he takes him to do just that. Now, it’s off to the birthday party!

Well, hopefully, there’s a birthday party. Jane’s lackadaisical view turns angry when Mateo calls to say he’s not coming to the party because he’s sick. Jane bursts through the apartment door and chastises Rafael for letting Mateo pretend to be sick. Mateo walks into the room, Jane barks at him to get into the car, then he pukes all over the floor. Newsflash: Mateo is very sick. Cue Jane writing down all her feelings through a stream of tears.

When she drives up to her house, Jane sees a crowd of people, and a unicorn, ready to celebrate three decades on this earth. The thought of chit-chatting overwhelms her and she drives away. Away from the uncertain future. Away from the chaos of her life.

Alba, Xo, and Petra later find her on a bench, surrounded by scraps of paper that she’s been saving. As Xo gently reminds her that running away is not the answer, Jane’s notes are swept away in the wind. All the women leap and dive to catch whatever they can and all end up in a ditch on a construction site. This feels right.

Jane weeps for the ninth time this episode. She quietly admits that arriving at her own birthday party without Rafael means that she’s accepting her current terrible circumstances. Luckily Petra provides some well-timed comic relief by offering to call Rafael and yell at him.

Xo looks down and reads the note she rescued. It’s all about Michael’s eyes and how he is slower to laugh than he used to be. There’s also one about how Jane fought the urge to take Michael’s hand. As the notes are collected, Xo voices what Jane has been feeling for a while: It seems like Jane still has feelings for Michael. And if that’s the case, why is she trying so hard to win Rafael back?

Great question.

The scene suddenly flashes back. Before Michael. Before the drama. Rafael asks Jane what she wants for her birthday and Jane, being Jane, asks for a handwritten note professing his love. We see Rafael writing that note and then we see a current-day Rafael reading the note.

His CGI heart starts to glow, which everyone knows represents true love on Jane the Virgin.

Suddenly, Jane shows up at Rafael’s door and it’s clear he is going to forgive her. He first apologizes for all of the shade he’s been throwing and pulls out the card just as Jane blurts out, “You were right.”

Jane can’t dismiss how she feels about Michael. She can’t expect Rafael to wait on her to see if she can make lemonade out of lemons. Rafael smoothly sticks the note back into his pocket and we see the glowing heart fade away.

Speaking of fading away, JR doesn’t really care that one of Jane’s notes Petra found flying around in a ditch is proof that she didn’t send the email. Fact: JR doesn’t feel safe around Petra. Instead of running away, Petra vows that she will fight for their relationship. Buckle up, JR. When Petra sets her mind to something, it always gets done.

That night, Jane struggles to hold it together in front of Mateo, who is still acting like a little brat. He refuses a bedtime story and a kiss. It’s the rejection from her son that sends Jane into a fit of tears. Mateo snaps out of it and consoles his mom. They makeup and Mateo drifts off to sleep just as Michael shows up.

The insurance people are off his back. Nice. And he also has a birthday gift for Jane. She pulls out her own book and jokes that she already has plenty of copies of this novel. Michael laughs and points out that this is his copy. Jane flips through and lovingly recognizes his handwriting and how he correctly guessed who the characters were based on.

The triangle is officially back, people.

Or is it a triangle? As Jane ferociously types out notes for her new book, we see Rafael toss her birthday card into the trash. Then he pops some pills and washes them down with alcohol.

It looks like Rafael has a few lemons of his own. But instead of making lemonade, he is adding Vodka.

Related content:

Episode Recaps

Jane the Virgin
A telenovela adaptation, Jane the Virgin tells the story of Jane Villanueva, a virgin who is accidentally inseminated during a routine checkup.
  • TV Show
  • 4