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Grey's Anatomy Winter Premiere Recap: Did 'MerLuca' Find Love in an Elevator?

greys anatomy season 15 episode 9

If you’ll recall, the windswept fall finale of Grey’s Anatomy ended with Amelia about to learn what Owen had just found out — that Teddy is pregnant with his baby; Maggie on the verge of revealing to Jackson that his mother has cancer; Levi and Nico making one another’s pulses spike while stuck in an ambulance; Alex and Jo having discovered that they aren’t yet legally hitched; and Meredith and DeLuca trapped in an elevator with their burgeoning feelings. Yeah, it was a lot! Where did things stand when the storm finally exhaled its last gasp? Read on…

greys-anatomy-season-15-episode-9-recap‘IF THIS IS HOW I DIE, IT’S OK’ | Picking up right where “Blowin’ in the Wind” left off, “Shelter From the Storm” began with Levi and Nico scarcely taking a break from their canoodling after an electric pole fell near their ambulance, Richard bellowing about getting the lights back on (which didn’t take long but didn’t set the elevators back in motion) and Amelia finding out from Owen about Teddy’s pregnancy. Wait, “it’s yours?!?” she asked incredulously. Meredith freaked about getting out of the elevator with DeLuca to harvest that heart for Cece, sending him into action-hero mode to find the escape hatch; and Jackson admitted to Maggie that he’d “never felt less like a doctor” than he did now that he’d been informed of Catherine’s diagnosis. Meanwhile, Cece’s ticker began failing faster and faster. “My old heart is jealous of my new one,” she told Maggie. But she might never get that new one, because at that very moment, it was stuck in another elevator with Bailey and Taryn. When the intern expressed her fear that she was having a panic attack, Miranda insisted that she wasn’t — because she herself was on the verge of having one!

“I just think we’re gonna plummet, and Cece’s gonna die,” said Taryn, bringing to the fore Bailey’s fears about Ben’s death-defying job. As the temporarily-former chief started to lose it, the intern caught on and attempted to calm her down. Meanwhile, frantic to get Cece her organs — to save someone even if he couldn’t save his mom — Jackson threatened the hospital’s building manager and ultimately battered at the elevator door to get to Bailey, Taryn and the deceased patient full of donor organs. Though the tag team of Jackson, Link and the building manager were ultimately successful, the building manager — a big Cece fan (but who isn’t?) — wound up getting his legs crushed as he tried to get back out of the elevator. “Are they gone?!?” the poor guy asked. When Link subsequently operated, the ortho god and Jackson clashed, with Avery getting his way so that the building manager wouldn’t have to get prosthetics. (Maybe Link is merely an ortho demigod?)

greys anatomy season 15 episode 9 recap‘YOU SEEM TO KNOW WHAT EVERYBODY WANTS!’ | Before Owen, Teddy and Amelia could get into their situation, their patient took a nosedive, and the trio realized that they had to operate right then and there. “What else do we have to do?” Teddy cracked. They weren’t going anywhere. And speaking of cracking, they’d have to do some of that to the unfortunate patient’s sternum in order to save him. While Owen prepped for that indelicate procedure using the license plate that had been sticking out of the patient, Teddy, it seemed to Amelia, gave her permission to stay with him — as if she needed permission! But Teddy was going to stay in Seattle so that the baby could have two parents, and she herself could have her friend. Once the trio were freed from the elevator, Teddy told Owen that yes, she wanted him to be involved in their child’s life. He wanted that, too. Of course, he did. And for the first time, he actually looked happy that he was becoming the father he’d always wanted to be. But as an Amelia fan, I was not happy with how close he and his babymama came to kissing at that moment! Bad, Owen! Bad, bad, bad!

greys anatomy season 15 episode 9 recap‘TELL ME AGAIN WHY THIS IS SUCH A BAD IDEA’ | Before Mer and DeLuca’s elevator got moving, he reassured her that Cece would be fine without her — the matchmaker’s surgery didn’t require a surgeon as brilliant as Grey. He also tried to convince her that the elevator was like a Tardis, in which the ordinary rules didn’t apply. She was amused but still didn’t take the bait. Later, he revealed — in Italian — that his father was a famous surgeon in Italy… who once, during a manic phase, had operated on seven patients, losing four. But because of his money and connections, he’d been acquitted. And he’d never told anyone that before. (There’s that deepening connection we’d heard about… !) As the duo resumed looking for an escape hatch, they wound up close enough to nearly kiss. Go back to talking to me in Italian, she said when he pressed her to do just that. So he did, saying, “When you finally let me kiss you, and you will let me kiss you, I won’t ever stop.” To his surprise, she spoke Italian and knew exactly what he’d said. But before they could actually surrender to the moment, the elevator doors opened, dammit!

greys anatomy season 15 episode 9 recap‘DOCTORS ARE SO COOL’ | When Alex at last arrived at Grey Sloan, leaving Jo behind (she was drunk from their second honeymoon), he momentarily jumped into Levi and Nico’s ambulance to get out of the wind. Awkward. Afterwards, the new couple were sure they were gonna get axed. Running into an antsy Betty, Richard put her to work helping other people. Addictive personalities like them had to be kept busy. But when he got called into surgery, she was left to wander the halls… and started looking for drugs. Soon enough, Webber caught her, prompting her to beg him not to tell Amelia. No chance of that. As the clock kept ticking, with no sign of Cece’s organs arriving, the matchmaker sensed that something was wrong and pleaded with Maggie to distract her by talking about her romance with Jackson. In no time, Cece that gleaned that Maggie didn’t feel “safe” in the relationship, which meant that either Jackson was terrible for her or so wonderful for her that she was scared of losing him. Had he ever made her feel safe? Yes, Maggie said — when her mom had died. Just then, Cece began coding. Thankfully, it wasn’t much longer before her transplants could be performed. “We got a heartbeat,” Mer declared. “Thank God — she told me she would haunt me” if she died. Next, they were gonna give Cece a new kidney. Meanwhile, Bailey retreated to her old office and desperately texted Ben: “YOU OK?” Finding her there, Alex, miffed at how she’d bossed him around as if she was still the chief, told her that she could have her old job back. As she was admitting that she didn’t want it, that she had had to step down, that she’d been in crisis, Ben texted her back that he was fine. At that, Bailey broke down. “Please don’t quit,” she sobbed to Karev. “I need your help.”

‘I NEARLY KISSED THE ITALIAN ONE… I MAY KISS THE OTHER ONE, TOO’ | As the hour drew to a close, Mer did what Cece loved best — talked to her about her romantic prospects. Even though Cece had passed away on the table. (Nooo… !) Owen apologized to Amelia, who reminded him that she’d been the one who’d told him to go to Germany in the first place. “I wanted you to be happy with” Teddy, she said. In response, he tried to reassure her that it didn’t change anything between the two of them. No, Amelia insisted sweetly. “She’s here. She’s an option. So I’m going to give you time to consider your options.” (Go, Amelia 2.0 — super mature.) When the building manager awakened after surgery, Jackson and Link reported that the prognosis for his legs was great. Hilariously, Alex told Levi and Nico that “that” could not happen — not in an ambulance, anyway. They could, however, get it on anywhere else in the hospital. Tipped off to Betty’s drug search, Amelia told the teen that she’d called a rehab center. Would Betty go? Yes. Jackson and Maggie pulled Richard aside to tell him about Catherine (which really seemed like something they could have let his wife break to him). And finally, Mer got stuck between her two suitors and realized that it was Cece’s way of haunting her. So she was going home to see her children. See ya later! “You’ll see who later?” asked Link. Good question.

So, did “Shelter From the Storm” blow you away? Grade it in the poll below, then hit the comments.