'Scandal' Tweet-cap: Three's Company

SPOILER ALERT: The recap for the "Ride, Sally, Ride" episode of "Scandal" contains storyline and character spoilers.

We thought the love affairs on "Scandal" were complicated enough; this week's episode takes them to a whole 'nother level!

The first new episode of 2014 not only gave us even weirder moments in the Fitz/Olivia/Mellie triangle (like Mellie walking in on her husband making out with his mistress in the Oval Office, and totally ignoring it) but it introduced us to a brand-new triangle: Fitz/Mellie/Andrew Nichols, his former Lt. Governor and the current Governor of California!

Plus, with Olivia having to "pretend" to kiss Jake Ballard to divert rumors of an affair with Fitz, the romantic geometry of "Scandal" right now is getting pretty complicated.

Keep your enemies close...

So, in case you forgot during the winter hiatus, Vice President Sally Langston is running for president — against the incumbent and after murdering her own husband.

Her announcement sets off a tizzy among the triumvirate of Olivia, Cyrus, and Mellie. Even James is pulled into the fray and proposes painting her as an outright crazy person. In the midst of this, Mellie runs off to talk to Fitz, but finds him in a very, um, cozy position with Olivia. OK, they're making out.

Sally gives a statement that somehow makes it sound OK that she's running against her president while remaining VP at the same time! Like, is this even Constitutionally possible? Guess so!

Fitz is furious about Sally's betrayal and wants to find a new VP straight away, so he falls to someone he knows and trusts: his former Lt. Governor of California, Andrew Nichols. But Nichols is a terrible choice, as both Mellie and Olivia argue. The latter points out that he's just another middle-aged white dude. Incorporate some diversity, Liv argues.

But Fitz just won't hear it. He wants loyalty right now, period.

Dead but not forgotten

As the audience is well-aware, Sally killed her husband, and Cyrus knows about it. And now, slowly but surely, other people are catching on. David has a tape recording of Sally's call to Cy after the deed, which he plays for James. But neither really have any proof of anything.

Meanwhile, in non-White House intrigue, Harrison is still dealing with this whole Adnan Salif mess. What exactly that mess is, we don't know, but he tries to hit up David for help to no avail.

Charlie meets with the new B-613 Command, Jake Ballard, who doesn't seem to be the biggest fan of his. And he asks about Quinn. "She's a good kid," Charlie says. Jake replies that Quinn isn't B-613 and never will be.

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A shocked Liv learns that her father is no longer in charge of B-613, and meets him on that park bench he so favors. But Eli/Rowan/whatever his name is doesn't allow her to console him; instead, he pretends he's still working for the Smithsonian.

Fine, Liv says. But she can tell that he's devastated. Papa Pope turns his intimidating gaze on her and warns her to stay away from Fitz. The president won't make it to the end of his term, Rowan predicts. "Start grieving now."

A White House reporter gets an anonymous text about the lack of an autopsy report for Daniel Langston, Sally's husband. Hmmm, this could be the Achilles heel for both Sally and Cyrus. Unfortunately, an even juicier topic hits the gossip mill — that Fitz and Olivia actually did have an affair. Uh oh, time for #Gladiators to kick butt.

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Check, checkmate

Charlie and Quinn are shopping at a Home Depot-type place, to … we don't know … redo their den? While there, Charlie gets a call from Cy to fix this whole Daniel Langston debacle.

Apparently, that calls for Quinn to steal a little boy from school. Oh, Quinn, babe. You've gone from Gladiator to child kidnapper?

James confronts Cyrus about the Daniel Langston autopsy, but Cy refuses to divulge any details. But why? Out of some weird loyalty to Sally? To protect James? To protect Fitz? To protect himself?

Abby and Harrison are tasked by Olivia to interview the medical examiner, who makes up some BS story about the circumstances around her report. Turns out, as they're interrogating her, Charlie and Quinn have her son (that little kid she kidnapped) around the corner. This time, they're one step ahead of the Gladiators.

Mellie blasts Cyrus for all the swirl around Daniel's death, but Cy icily responds that he'll take care of that — she needs to take care of the rumors about Fitz and Olivia.

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She does that by setting up a fake-cheery lunch with Olivia.

"Smile!" the First Lady says through gritted teeth, before sliding over a list of names of men that Liv should pretend to date. Ice cold. Elsa from "Frozen" doesn't have anything on Mellie.

The heat is on

Abby catches Harrison stealing a gun from her desk. What does he need that for? Harrison explains he was part of a shady deal, and that everyone else but him is dead.

Later, with gun in hand, he waits for the mysterious Adnan Salif — who turns out to be a drop-dead (no pun intended) gorgeous woman! "I missed you," she purrs, as they start ripping each other's clothes off (of course, because this is "Scandal").

Meanwhile, Olivia goes to see Fitz in the Oval Office, and after some banter about whether the door should remain open or closed, she tries to resign. Except Fitz won't let her.

She insists, saying she doesn't believe in his choice of a new VP, Nichols. When she interviewed the guy, he gave total non-answers about why he never got married. Olivia doesn't trust him, but Fitz does.

Liv then challenges Fitz about why he put Jake in charge of B-613, knowing what that posting does to people. He argues that it's because he can trust Jake, but let's face it — he wants Jake gone. Or turned into an evil mastermind like her father.

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Cyrus is dealing with his own relationship issues, as Leo theorizes that someone on the inside is feeling White House reporters info about the Daniel Langston autopsy.

It turns out that that someone is James! As he tells David, "My husband is a monster … He's powerful and he thinks he doesn't have a weakness, but he does: me."

As Olivia chills at home with probably three bottles of wine, Jake comes by. She asks about Quinn and warns him about turning into a monster (see the theme here?) like her father.

As Liv sadly notes, "Vermont feels so far away." (It really does.)

The next day, she and Jake are photographed smooching in public. So, that solves the affair rumor crisis. The autopsy thing is still percolating. But the VP issue is resolved, right?

Fitz holds a rally to announce Nichols as his pick. Just before that happens, Nichols tells Mellie he's dreamed of this for 12 years. What, to be Fitz's running mate? No, Nichols says — to be near Mellie again.

The last shot is of Fitz, Mellie, and Nichols, raising their hands together. And so a new triangle is born.

"Scandal" airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on ABC.