Pretty Little Liars: season 1, episode 17

Darby Festa ('13)/Eastside online news editor

Episode seventeen picks up where the girls last left off: trying to figure out the secret message Toby left for them. The girls manage to decode the message, translating it from the original Braille inscription, and discover that it spells “BAD”.

Aria and Hanna eventually end their feuding ways. Both apologize for their behavior, and Aria realizes that A forced Hanna to attempt to reveal Aria’s affair with Ezra to Aria’s mother.

Also, Caleb continues to lodge at Hanna’s house, unbeknownst to Ms. Marin. Ms. Marin doesn’t notice because she is very preoccupied as a relative of Mrs. Potter is requesting the contents of the safety deposit box, most of which Ms. Marin has stolen.

Speaking of misbehaving parents, Paige’s father comes storming into the school cafeteria, demanding to speak to the swimming coach. He rants about Paige’s unfair treatment, letting loose a few unkind words about Emily’s sexuality. Emily refuses to forgive Paige, despite her countless apologies.

Meanwhile, Spencer speaks to Toby and questions him about the message. Short on time, he can only advise Spencer that she is “reading it wrong” but tells her to come Saturday morning when Jenna is not home, and he will explain it further.

When Spencer visits Toby, she learns that the District Attorney is dropping the charges on Toby for Ali’s murder. The evidence didn’t match up and he is free to go. Spencer offers to drive Toby to the courthouse, and they run into Jenna outside. Jenna seems angry that Spencer is driving Toby.

The Marin’s get two visitors later that night. The first visitor: Caleb, who openly knocks on the door and introduces himself to Hanna’s mother as Hanna’s new friend. The second: Mrs. Potter’s relative, James Leeland, who claims to be an architect. Caleb watches as James signs some contracts, and later reveals his suspicions to Hanna about James being an architect. According to Caleb, James “has a crappy plastic pen” and no one who drew for a living would own such a thing.

A little digging confirms that the real James Leeland died two years ago; the man is actually an imposter. Hanna tries to tell this to her mom, who later is convinced by the man’s behavior, but does nothing about it because that would provoke investigation regarding the safety deposit box.

Toby tells Spencer the message actually read 214, and made a rubbing of what Jenna had written on her computer.

Another surprise: Paige kisses Emily after a heated argument. Emily’s mother and Paige’s father had gotten into a fight earlier, leaving the girls on bad terms.

“A” sends an exterminator to Hanna’s house to deal with an infestation, a.k.a. Caleb.

The last scene depicts someone with black gloves putting flowers on Mrs. Potter’s grave, giving the drama-filled episode a spooky ending.