1. It is morning in Seattle!
2. Meaning, it is the morning Cristina (Sandra Oh) is finally supposed to leave the hospital, her friends, and whatever Owen (Kevin McKidd) is to her, for her new, incredible job in Zurich (bestowed to her by Burke).
And that means that this is Oh's last episode. No!
3. "This is goodbye, then?" Owen asks. He wants to have sex. Cristina says she can't say good-bye to him at the trailer, because she is going to the hospital one last time.
4. "We have a big good-bye here, and then I'll see you there, and I'll feel all stuhhhhh, bye again."
5. Speaking of leaving: Meredith and Derek's house. They really do seem to be moving to D.C.
6. Meredith doesn't seem that excited.
7. As has been a theme in the past several episodes, Alex (Justin Chambers), who grew up poor, is excited to have money now that he works in private practice.
8. The Chief (James Pickens Jr.) — sorry, he is the Chief to me, always and forever, and he will be referred to thusly — and Jackson (Jesse Williams) talk about Cristina's seat on the board being open.
9. Bailey (Chandra Wilson) walks in, crowing about how Bubble Boy — whom she injected with a cure for his immune deficiency without his parents' permission — is doing great. Jackson tells her that her research funding has been cut.
10. She's still furious. And walks out on Jackson.
11. Ross (Gaius Charles) and Edwards (Jerrika Hinton) are talking about Murphy being fired.
12. The new head of cardio, Maggie Pierce (Kelly McCreary), is complaining to Owen about Cristina.
13. Kepner (Sarah Drew) tells Owen she's pregnant, and natters on.
14. As Kepner talks, Owen notices the local news on the nearby TV.
15. Owen and Kepner start ordering everyone to prepare for the emergency influx.
16. The all-Cristina title card!
17. Let's look at it again. Like this.
18. Owen has to do a news conference, and says that some patients are presenting symptoms that may mean there was a chemical explosion, but they don't know.
19. Owen tries to call Cristina, who, remember, was going to go to the mall, and it goes straight to voicemail.
20. Owen tells Alex to tell him if he sees Cristina.
"Don't tell Mer!" yells Alex.
21. Jackson and Callie (Sara Ramirez) are helping a pregnant woman, who's a surrogate. She begs them to let her carry the pregnancy to term.
22. Derek arrives at the hospital. He tries to yank a surgery away from his sister Amy (Caterina Scorsone), who's been taking over his practice.
She says no.
23. Catherine (Debbie Allen) is at the hospital, and we can assume Richard has not seen her since he almost proposed to her and then took it back.
She tells him she's there to visit Jackson and Kepner, because she's going to be a grandmother.
24. The Department of Homeland Security people, who are there investigating, are being terrible.
25. Alex is helping a little boy. Cristina appears. She is not dead at the mall!
26. The local news is causing hysteria.
27. Murphy (Tessa Ferrer) shows up to help, despite her firing.
28. The surrogate's water breaks during her surgery. They call Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) in to help.
29. Meredith sees Cristina for the first time in the episode. She tells Cristina that they're buying a house in D.C.
Cristina: "I'm happy for you! People do this!" Meredith: "Are you? Happy for me?"
30. Murphy kicks ass on a really gross eye situation.
31. Arizona tells Cristina that she's gotten a call from UNOS, and there's a heart for Cristina's patient, little Link (one of the three siblings who all needed heart transplants).
32. Owen watches the news, which is speculating about a dirty bomb.
He freaks out: "Stop scaring people for no reason!"
33. Cristina taunts Alex about how boring his job is going to be. She compliments him. He can't believe she's been paying attention to his work.
"You think I wasn't paying attention to you proving me wrong?" she asks. "I mean, you'll never be as good as me. But you're very, very good."
34. "Putting all that talent in a drawer?" she continues. "So maybe you are an imbecile. God, what a relief, I'm still right."
35. Maggie comes in to ask Cristina why in god's name she would schedule a heart transplant to come to the hospital when they're slammed.
36. Alex laughs, and tells Cristina he will miss her. He asks her why did she schedule the transplant when she's supposed to leave.
37. The little baby is OK and Jackson feels parentish things.
38. Meredith is fighting with the Department of Homeland Security guy again. Suddenly, he gets a call and leaves.
"Doctor, you have a very tough job keeping people alive. I do too," he tells her.
39. He left, it turns out, because they now know that the skin reactions are from dry-cleaning fluid, and the local news says that it was a gas explosion, not a terrorist attack.
40. Link and his mom show up, and say that Cristina told them to come. This is the first Owen is hearing that she's OK.
41. Catherine walks into a supply closet where Kepner is crying. "I don't think I can raise a child in a world where they could die going to buy new shoes," she weeps.
Catherine tells her a story about experiencing racism when she was a kid in a diner in Texas, and how her father handled it. "This is how the world changes, sweetheart," she says. "Good people raising their babies right." (Note: This scene works because Allen makes it work.)
42. Cristina: "I can't leave, Meredith. They just bombed Seattle."
43. Meredith tells her that she should leave. Her plane is in two hours. "You have been stalling for two weeks!"
"Nothing feels finished; none of it feels finished!" Cristina yells. "You and I are not finished. George is dead and Izzie is gone, and it's supposed to be you and me and Alex." Meredith answers, "There is no finish line, there is no endpoint. You just have to go!" Cristina: "You gotta help me, Mer." After they find out the donor heart has been delayed in traffic, Cristina agrees to leave.
44. Cristina says good-bye to Derek. It is simple, heartfelt, and slightly awkward (i.e. perfect).
I was moved by this bit, as I was by so much of the episode. But I did not like — at all — the "Take On Me" cover that played during this scene and the other '80s song covers throughout Season 10. I found them to be intrusive, in that trying to figure out the song when it would first begin was an unwelcome distraction. Please, no covers in Season 11. The music on Grey's Anatomy has always been unparalleled in its excellence!
45. Ross tells Murphy she shouldn't have been cut from the program. She points out that the Chief is always right about everything, and he must be right about her.
She says she needs to find what she's good at. It's a nice good-bye for Murphy. (I liked Murphy.)
46. Bailey hounds the Chief about her research being cut. He gives her a speech. "You are a surgeon, Bailey!"
47. Rushing out, Cristina says good-bye to Bailey and the Chief. Ross begs Cristina to take him with her. "You can say no. But I will badger you until you say yes." She says yes.
As the Chief hugs Cristina, he tells her how proud he is of her. Then Cristina runs away...
48. She waves good-bye to Owen, whom she hasn't seen all day.
When I first watched this episode, I certainly did not notice that Owen is basically up to his literal elbows in intestines.
49. Meredith and Cristina are in the parking lot, and a guy gets out of a cab with Link's heart. Cristina tries to stay again, but Meredith insists she leave.
"What do you need? An 'I love you' or something? I love you! Call me when you get there."
50. It looks like Cristina is leaving.
51. (She's not.)
52. Cristina: "We have to dance it out. That's how we finish."
Meredith picks up her phone. Cristina: "What are you doing? Are you going to call someone to make me leave?" Meredith: "I'm finding a song." Cristina lays out their new rules. "Don't get on any little tiny planes that can crash, or stick your hand in a body cavity that has a bomb in it, or offer your life to a gunman. Don't do that!" (This is when I really started crying.) "You're my person. I need you alive. You make me brave. OK. Now we dance it out." They dance to "Where Does the Good Go" by Tegan and Sara, a callback to Season 1.
53. It's the best. Here's the video of the scene, and you should watch it.
54. To that end, Meredith is supposed to sign the papers for the D.C. house. But she doesn't want to.
"I think I need to stay here."
55. The parents of the surrogacy baby come in, and have a touching scene with the surrogate, expressing affection for her. Callie and Arizona realize they have found the solution to their pregnancy problem.
56. Maggie tells Link's mom that everything "went perfectly" with his transplant surgery.
Listening to Maggie talk to Link's mother, Owen realizes Cristina is really gone.
57. Bailey is excited to be on the board, and has lots of plans. "Webber picked me," she says with pride.
58. Not so fast, though. Alex and Jo find an envelope Cristina left for him, saying she's giving Alex both her shares in the hospital and her seat on the board.
Jo: "Can she do that?" Alex: "I don't know. She did." (I didn't notice until screengrabbing that Cristina wrote "EVIL SPAWN" on the envelope.)
59. Meredith and Derek are fighting. He says he has a "once in a lifetime opportunity." She says she can't be in his "shadow" anymore.
60. Meredith: "You will always be that hotshot surgeon, and I will always be that young intern that fell in love with you." And: "We're not just talking about my job, Derek, we're talking about my life. I grew up here, I made my family here."
Making your own family is the key, after all, and is what drives Grey's Anatomy, a show about adults with bad parents who find each other and build a new support system. (It's also what's made it so satisfying to watch for years and years.) "I live here, my life is here, I don't want to leave," Meredith says.
Cristina's voiceover: "Whenever we think we know the future, it changes."
61. Maggie and the Chief sit on a bench. She's obviously overwhelmed.
"I haven't had one conversation that hasn't related to work," she says. But it's not only that: She tells him she was adopted, and recently she looked up the name of her birth mother — and it's all over the hospital. What was her name? "Ellis Grey. Did you know her?"
OH MY GOD.
62. Derek says Meredith is making him choose between his job and his family. Meredith: "I am simply saying I am not going. I am staying here."
63. Meanwhile, in Zurich...
Cristina is in her office surveying her new life. Ross comes in: "Dr. Yang, they're ready for you."