Episode: Lost and Found ...

Original Airdate: February 26, 2002

Rory and Lorelai are walking through town on their way to Lukeís for a big breakfast while having their usual mother/daughter witty banter. It seems that Lorelai tried to fix something herself. What was she thinking? It turns out, that while she was using a ladder, she ended up cutting her hand. In normal overdramatic fashion, Lorelai believes that she either has gangrene or that sheís been infected with an extra-terrestrial substance that has given her super powers. Rory humors her mom and tells her that theyíll pick out her cape after breakfast.

As they sit down to chow, they are horrified to see that Luke is not cooking this morning. The substitute chef, Caesar, is handling the breakfast crowd and thatís not good. (His pancakes suck.) So, Lorelai runs upstairs to see if Luke will cook up some breakfast. One look inside Lukeís apartment, though, and itís clear there will be no pancakes today. Luke is up to his ears in junk. Or more specifically, Jessís junk. His mom has shipped the rest of Jessís stuff and itís created total chaos. Lorelai is sympathetic but because she has had a near-death experience trying to clean her rain gutter, she will not settle for anything but Lukeís special fluffy pancakes. Suddenly, Jess emerges from the bathroom (he was in there for two hours), gives Luke some lip and promptly leaves.

Later that night, Lorelai announces that sheís finally ready to get a tattoo. And whatís it going be? ďMel Brooks.Ē What?! Lorelai believes Brooks is a legend and totally deserves a spot on her butt. When the girls spot Luke sitting solo in the diner, Lorelai sends Rory to grab some ice cream while she goes to see whatís going on. Turns out, Luke is downstairs because Jess is upstairs blasting his stereo and Luke just needed to grab some peace and quiet. Lorelai suggests that itís time to get a bigger apartment. The place upstairs used to be Lukeís fatherís office, so it was never meant to be lived in. Even by one person. Luke says that everything is okay, but heís in denial. Before Lorelai leaves, Luke asks her if Jess could earn some extra cash by cleaning out her rain gutters. She hesitates, lies about the fact that sheís already contacted some other people about doing it (this is all said in front of Rory, who knows her mom is lying like a rug), but then says if those other folks fall through, she will consider Jess.

On the way home, Rory gives her mom a hard time about Jess. She thinks Lorelai should give Jess a chance. Lorelai doesnít like Jess and thatís the honest truth. Rory claims that her mom doesnít know the real Jess. Maybe so, but that doesnít change the fact that whoever Jess is pretending to be is pretty crummy and undesirable. Rory wonít give up though and brings up the fact that Lorelai didnít even like Luke at first. Eventually, she warmed up to him and now theyíre friends. Lorelai starts to become suspicious about Roryís insistence on giving Jess a chance and starts giving Rory the third degree about her motives. Why is liking Jess so important? Rory makes up some story about everyone getting along, but Lorelai isnít buying it.

Back at Lukeís, he finally goes upstairs and finds Jess sound asleep amid a total mess. He starts to clean up and then loses it completely. He canít stand living there anymore. So, tomorrow they will get up early and go apartment hunting. End of story! In the morning, Luke and Jess pound the pavement but canít seem to agree on anything they look at. Luke has three more places to see, but Jess needs to bail. Seems heís cleaning Lorelaiís rain gutters after all.

At Lorelaiís, Rory welcomes Jess into their house. They chat briefly at the door until Jess asks Rory if she changed her hair. This comment comes out of nowhere and makes Rory visibly uncomfortable in a way that makes us think she definitely likes Jess. And he so obviously likes her. Otherwise, why would he have noticed her hair? Lorelai interrupts the two flirts and, after a few awkward exchanges (during which Jess can hardly manage to put two words together), puts him to work. Outside, Rory confronts Jess about his complete lack of verbal skills when it comes time to talk to Lorelai. After all, Rory went out on a limb for Jess, so the least he could do is try to make polite conversation with her mom. Jess remains indifferent to this whole tirade. Why should he try to be nice to Lorelai? What difference does it make? Rory makes the mistake of saying that if Jess cared about Rory at all, he would make an effort. She walked right into that one! Jess is quick to ask why Rory believes that he cares about her. Rory tries to back track but the damage is done. Although, to give Jess a little credit, he doesnít make Rory feel bad about what she said. In fact, he offers to try to get along with Lorelai. He canít promise it will work, but heíll try.

Meanwhile, Rory meets up with Dean at a book fair, but totally annoys him when she spends two hours browsing for books. Itís not exactly his idea of a good time. She agrees to stop and do something else, but things go from bad to worse between them when Dean suggests they go see Lord of the Rings again. Rory seems indifferent but agrees to go. Dean picks up on her attitude and they continue to bicker. Things are not going well for the happy couple. When Rory goes to pay for her books, Dean notices that sheís not wearing the bracelet he made her. Rory gets a bit nervous and then lies about taking it off because of a rash she got on her wrist. She knows she lost it, but just canít admit that to Dean right now. And we know exactly when she lost it (the picnic lunch with Jess) and exactly where it is right now.

At home, Lorelai is about to munch on leftover Chinese food and decides to be nice and offer some to Jess. He says no at first, but then changes his mind. He did say he would try and make an effort to get along with Lorelai.

Inside, Lorelai offers up every chicken dish from the local Chinese food joint and then tries to make conversation. Jess actually talks this time around and shows a bit of his personality that Rory seems to like so much. Suddenly, Rory bursts in and announces that she lost the bracelet Dean made her. Jess listens from the kitchen while Lorelai tries to calm down Rory. What if itís really lost? Dean will be so upset! Lorelai goes off to work, leaving Rory in a panic and Jess loving every minute of this.

Later, Luke calls Lorelai and heís having a little panic attack himself. He canít find a place to live and itís driving him crazy. He needs her help, now! So she heads off and looks at a really nice place with Luke in town. The broker assumes that Luke and Lorelai are husband and wife, and Lorelai plays right along with the gag. Luke freaks out from embarrassment but then calms down when Lorelai tries to convince Luke to take this place. But then Luke comes up with all these excuses not to take it. Itís a two-year lease and Jess will be heading to college in a year anyway. Itís clear that Luke is having issues with the move. But why? After all, even if Jess leaves, Luke might meet a woman one day and it will be good to have a nice apartment. How else will he get lucky? Lorelai gives a donít-be-so-pathetic speech to Luke, hoping heíll take the apartment because it will give his life more possibilities. Reluctantly, Luke agrees and takes the place. But he throws another tantrum when he discovers that if he takes the place, Taylor will be his landlord and that is just too much to take. Luke will not be moving after all. He might, however, have an aneurysm.

At home, Lorelai finds that Jess is still there, and whatís worse, he was coming out of Roryís room. Lorelai confronts him on it and Jess says he was looking at Roryís books. Want to make a bet that he was returning Roryís bracelet? Anyway, Lorelai doesnít give Jess a hard time, but the look on her face says she doesnít trust this kid as far as she could throw him. When Rory arrives home looking all dejected, Jess tries to comfort her but does a lousy job. He canít understand why it was such a big deal. Roryís upset because she thinks Dean will read something into it because things between them havenít been that great. Jess tells her to keep looking because things you lose are usually right in front of your face. Rory goes inside to look again. And, surprise surprise, she finds it right under the bed! Rory is so psyched and runs off to tell Lane.

Lorelai, however, has a bone to pick with Jess. She pays him for his work, but then accuses him of having had the bracelet all along. He denies it of course, but Lorelai is too smart and too quick for this boy. Jess thinks Lorelai is being ridiculous, but she knows the truth and thinks it was a pretty crappy thing to do. Rory is the only one in this town who is nice to Jess and youíd think he would try to treat her with more respect. Besides, if heís jealous of Rory and Dean, heís not going about this in a very smart way. Taking that bracelet didnít hurt Dean, it hurt Rory. When Lorelai makes a comment about how precious that bracelet is to Rory, Jess is quick to point out that it took her a full two weeks to notice it was gone. Jess just totally incriminated himself by the way, but Lorelai is so disgusted she just tells him to get lost.

Lorelai goes inside to take a breather, but is interrupted by a knock at the door. Itís Luke and heís clearly gone completely crazy because he announces that he just spent $100,000 and itís all Lorelaiís fault. Luke explains the whole Taylor landlord thing and how Taylor is single handedly buying up all these buildings in Stars Hollow, including the one right next door to Lukeís. Because he couldnít stand the thought of Taylor owing the building next door, Luke bought it before Taylor had the chance. Lorelai thinks itís a good idea and, while radical, will be beneficial to Luke in the long run. He just has to calm down and accept the whole idea. He sits down for some tea, and Lorelai starts asking him about Jess and whether or not he talks about Rory. In other words, is there something going on between them? Luke has no idea. Jess doesnít really confide in Luke. But if there were something going on, Luke thinks it would be great. Rory would be really good for Jess. But Jess would be really bad for Rory.

When Luke gets home, he takes an ax and starts to break down the wall that leads into the building next door. He hands Jess the ax and tells him that that will be his room. Looks like Luke is finally back to his old self.
Credit: Reelteen.com

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