Episode 26: A date with the past

Lauren, Lo and Audrina tour their new house, which is, as they exclaim five times, "so pretty!" Audrina will apparently be living in the guesthouse instead of in the main house with the others. "Are you going to be O.K. staying back here?" Lauren asks.

Audrina says she’ll enjoy the privacy. "Oh good, I’m glad you like it," Lo says disingenuously. There’s definitely some tension in this little group, but no one seems to want to address it – and why would they, when they can better spend their time planning "the best housewarming party"? Nothing dilutes awkwardness better than a house full of ex-boyfriends, their new girlfriends and your worst enemy’s siblings!

Lauren and Lo eat lunch and discuss the guest list. "Stephen’s in town tonight, and he’s gonna call me around six," Lauren says casually. "Stephen? Stephen Colletti?" Lo exclaims, grinning. "You guys are hanging out again! That melts my little black heart!" Lauren assures her that it’s nothing to get excited about. "How long did you like each other for in high school, and after high school?" Lo asks. "I never really stopped," Lauren admits.

Spencer is broadening his horizons – he’s moved from Steph’s couch to the couch at a coffee shop. He must be bad for business, because the place is empty. Steph finds him there and informs him that Lauren invited her to the party. "Do you have any, like, family loyalty?" Spencer asks. "How am I supposed to tell Heidi that you’re thinking of going to L.C.’s party?" Steph assures him that Heidi is over the whole Lauren thing.

New house. The girls prepare for the party. "Jarett’s coming, and then Justin’s coming, maybe my sister’s coming, and my brother…" Audrina says as she slices limes. "Wait, rewind, I wanted to hear about Justin," Lauren says affably. Audrina stares at her in silence. "Not a subject we’re allowed to talk about?" Lauren asks. "Maybe he’ll wear his cowboy hat," Lo chimes in. Audrina shoots dagger eyes at her. Careful, Lo, she’s holding a knife!

Heidi’s apartment. Steph arrives and quickly finds out that Heidi is, shockingly, not over the whole Lauren thing. "What would make you think that?" she asks. "Where’s your loyalty?" The collective Speidi guilt trip finally gets to Steph. "I won’t go," she says. "Do you want to watch a movie or something?"

Party! Brody arrives, bearing a housewarming gift (a juicer, the girls’ third) and accompanied by new girlfriend Cora. Lauren greets her awkwardly. "Brody’s girlfriend’s very pretty, with very large breasts," Lo remarks. Aww, she always knows just what to say to cheer people up! Luckily, Stephen Colletti arrives to take Lauren’s mind off of Brody – he invites her out to dinner. Justin also arrives (minus most of his hair and looking pretty good), and he and Audrina escape to the guesthouse to talk about the other girls. "It’s weird with them, especially Lo," Audrina sighs. "If bullsh*t starts up again, ’cause I have a feeling it will, you can’t win," Justin says. "Whatever," Audrina replies sadly. New house. Lauren prepares for her dinner with Stephen. "Is it a date?" Lo asks. Lauren’s not sure. "Are you excited?" Lo asks. Lauren is. "I’m excited for you," Lo says.

Dinner. Lauren tells Stephen that Lo was happy about this dinner. "She’s kinda like everybody else that’s wishing something would happen between you and I," Stephen says. From the look Lauren gives him, it would appear she’s in that group as well. Unfortunately, "I told my mom that we were going to dinner, and she was all, ‘Ooooh, really,’" he continues. "I’m like, can I see a good friend and just have dinner with them, and can it just be platonic?" Lauren’s face falls. The rest of the non-date, including the drive home, is somewhat awkward – Lauren even has to initiate the quick goodbye hug, and Stephen seems uncomfortable.

"You guys are so cute together, though," Lo sighs when Lauren tells her the bad news. She’s still optimistic, however. "Maybe one day it’ll work out and you’ll get married," she says, grinning. "Because that’s what I really want!"

Shown: The Hills’ Audrina Patridge. MTV.ca.

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