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Episode: Twenty-One is the Loneliest Number ...

Original Airdate: October 25, 2005

Richard has delivered the antique dollhouse to Lorelai as an excuse to express his concerns about the direction Rory’s life is headed. He’s worried that she will become too comfortable in the DAR/party life. Richard doesn’t want to see Rory’s potential wasted and is hoping that Lorelai will join forces with him to create a plan, but Lorelai wants nothing to do with it. She reminds her dad that she had a plan that the Gilmores reneged on. Richard continues on as if he hasn’t heard her and poses possible options having to do with Rory’s trust fund and bribery. Lorelai states that Rory cannot be bought and that she will help Rory as soon as she asks for help. Richard calls her an impossible girl, to which Lorelai responds that is what she wants on her tombstone.

Luke is trying to get the dollhouse into the house with no success. Lorelai is ranting about what has just transpired. Luke is listening, but outwardly is amazed at the superhuman strength Richard must possess in order to have delivered the dollhouse. Lorelai finally tells Luke the real reason she is so bothered. It seems that she and Rory had a plan for Rory’s 21st birthday: to go to Atlantic City, order martinis, sit at the roulette table at 11:59 and play the number 21 at the exact moment Rory turns 21, followed by a shopping spree of 21 things and “something about 21 guys that seems inappropriate now that I’m with you.”

Lorelai wonders if Rory even remembers their plan. Luke takes a break from trying to lift the dollhouse to reassure her that Rory does. Lorelai goes back into the house, but not before she tells Luke that the second story of the dollhouse comes off.

It is 4:03 a.m., and Rory is dreaming about the birthday tradition that she and Lorelai shared, except that Lorelai is Madeline Albright. Rory awakens with a jump. She tells Logan that she dreamt Madeline Albright was her mother, but she doesn’t go into further detail.

Lorelai encounters Maury and Babette preparing for Halloween. They are going to set up an elaborate gallows scene in front of their house. Lorelai is planning on her traditional hanging caramel apples from the trees, but their idea has got her thinking.

Rory and Logan are late for dinner, but they seem more interested in making out than making the reservation. Emily interrupts with a wardrobe excuse in order to get Logan alone. She asks him if he has any plans for Rory’s birthday, because she’d like to throw her a party. Logan says no. Rory returns to the room and Emily asks her if she’d like a party. Rory doesn’t seem enthused but agrees anyway. When Emily excuses herself, Logan asks Rory why she didn’t tell him about her birthday. Rory explains that she’s just not excited about it and explains “The Plan” to him. Logan offers to take her to Atlantic City so that they can do all of the things she and Lorelai had planned, sans the 21 guys. Rory declines but is appreciative.

Emily is busy getting the party underway and reminisces about her 21st birthday. She tells Rory how she wanted her invitations trimmed with real pearls and how special she felt. Rory’s head is obviously somewhere else. Rory gives Emily carte blanche to arrange the entire party herself. Emily asks if Rory would like her to send Lorelai an invitation, and Rory perks up and says yes.

Lorelai comes out to inspect Maury and Babette’s gallows scene, which is very realistic; so much so, in fact, that Maury ends up almost hanging himself for real. Lorelai approaches Luke about doing a skit in the front yard with a mad scientist theme. She excitedly goes into great detail about the skit and how Luke will be the victim and link sausages will be pulled from his intestines. Luke patiently listens before answering in no uncertain terms: no way; not happening. Lorelai tells him it isn’t over.

Logan drops Rory off, and they are making out when Richard taps on the window, claiming to have heard a noise. Logan is sensing a pattern. Richard returns to the house and expresses concerns that Rory may be getting ready to have “relations”. Emily and Richard prepare a plan.

Lorelai and Sookie are busy picking out which sausage would look the best in Lorelai’s skit. Sookie points out that Luke has yet to say yes to her plan, and Lorelai confidently states that it is only a matter of time. The mail comes and Lorelai sees Rory’s invitation. Suspecting it is part of her father‘s plan, Lorelai disregards it.

The Gilmores have invited Rory to dinner with a special guest -- Reverend Boatwright. Emily and Richard excuse themselves quickly, leaving the reverend and Rory alone. He quickly goes into the explanation that Rory’s virtue is her most precious gift and is meant to be given to the right person. Rory quickly figures out what is afoot. She explains that the ultimate gift ship has long since sailed.

Rory comes home from community service to find the pool house stuffed with furniture. Emily explains that there was nowhere else to put the party rentals and that Rory can sleep in her old room for now. It’s all a bit much for Rory, who asks whether or not Lorelai has RSVP’d. Emily says that she has not. Rory has a meltdown about etiquette and chocolate boxes and stalks away.

Lorelai is eating at Luke’s when the phone rings. Luke is surprised to find Rory on the other end. Rory wants to know whether or not Lorelai will be attending the party so that she knows how many chocolate boxes to have made. Luke plays the go-between for the conversation. Rory wants to know if she got the invitation. Lorelai says she didn’t know it was from Rory and that yes, she wants a chocolate box. Luke is stunned at how angry Rory is, but Lorelai is happy that she called.

It is 4:03 a.m. again. The girls wake up, look at the clock, and wonder if the other is out there doing the same.

Rory’s party is now underway, and Emily makes the rounds, muttering nasty things under her breath about people she greets. She introduces Rory to her signature drink. Logan shows up and is snubbed by Emily. Rory explains that it may have something to do with her telling the reverend about them having sex. As Rory begins to blow off steam about her grandparents, Lane and Zack show up. Introductions are made. It becomes obvious how far Rory has grown from her old life. Luke and Lorelai show up. Lorelai pretends to want to get this over with, but she has a hopeful anxiousness about her while searching the room for Rory. Emily greets them and mentions that there is a chocolate box waiting for her. Paris and Doyle show up and immediately go into a planned bit about Paris’s new position as editor.

Lorelai and Rory see each other, and Lorelai seems happy to see her. Rory makes an excuse to leave. Luke runs into Rory and gives her his mother’s pearl necklace as her gift.

Emily and Lorelai chat briefly before Emily notices the engagement ring. Emily’s congratulations are anything but heartfelt, and she mentions that Richard has been in his study sulking all evening. Lorelai takes the opportunity to steal away and talk to him.

Richard is depressed and complaining over the various things that have gone wrong, how he didn’t see it coming, and Lorelai tries to reassure him. Emily comes in to see what is detaining everyone. Richard and Emily argue over whether or not they have lost Rory. Emily says they have only lost her if she comes home pregnant. Lorelai leaves on that note. Richard explains that he wants a better life for Rory, because she’s better than the DAR wife lifestyle. Now it’s Emily turn to leave, offended.

Lorelai approaches Rory and tells her that “The Rory” sucks. The girls have an actual conversation for the first time in weeks. Rory says she’s gotten her community service hours down. Lorelai informs her that they are doing construction on the house and that they’ve gotten a dog. Rory expresses concern about the safety of the dog but then gets pulled away by her party to blow out the candles. Lorelai feels hurt, and she and Luke leave after watching Rory blow out the candles.

The drive home is quiet, and Luke can sense Lorelai’s pain. He takes the opportunity to agree to participate in having link sausages for intestines.
Credit: Desiree

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