Downton Abbey Finale Recap – Proposals and Goodbyes: Season 5 Episode 9

Downton Abbey Finale Recap - Proposals and Goodbyes: Season 5 Episode 9

Tonight on PBS a new episode of their popular drama Downton Abbey airs with an all new Sunday, March 1 season 5 episode 9 finale and we have your weekly recap below. On tonight’s episode, in the Season 5 finale, the Crawleys are invited by Lord Sinderby to a shooting party in Northumberland.

On the last episode observe Mrs. Patmore’s surprise, Anna’s predicament and Robert’s revelation. Did you watch last week’s episode? If you missed it we have a full and recap right here for you.

On tonight’s episode as per say the PBS synopsis “in the Season 5 finale, the Crawleys are invited by Lord Sinderby to a shooting party in Northumberland. Later, they return to Downton and celebrate Christmas.”

Tonight’s Downton Abbey season 5 episode 9 is going to be great, and you won’t want to miss it. So be sure to tune in for our coverage of Downton Abbey — tonight at 9 PM EST! While you wait for our recap, hit the comments and let us know how excited you are about the season 5 finale of Downton Abbey.

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Mary goes to visit Anna in prison. Robert tells Bates he hopes it will all be resolved soon and Bates says she’s being brave. Robert tells Thomas and Bates about the trip to Brancaster Castle and tells them to be on their toes. He tells Thomas to watch Bates pack for him since he’s going along with him. Hughes offers to help Baxter pack. She’s doing Lady Mary, Edith and Cora since Anna is in gaol. Mary goes through a series of locked doors to get to Anna.

Cora says Anna will be found innocent and Carson says Bates and Anna don’t deserve the luck they had. Cora asks Violet what she’ll do while they’re away. She says Shrimpy’s men found Princess Kuragin and she’s coming to her. She says she doesn’t like her and Tom asks why she has done it. Violet says her policy is never complain, never explain but Edith points out that Violet has no trouble complaining at will.

Anna asks Mary if she gave a false name and Mary says no, because they support her. Anna worries it will make the papers. Mary says they will prove it’s not in her nature to do what they’re accusing her of and they only have one witness that says she may have been there. Carson tells Hughes he doesn’t like Mary visiting the prison and worries it will make the papers. Thomas is cleaning a gun and Carson is annoyed he’s doing it at the staff table.

Baxter says Mary’s visit will do good since it will show the family supports her. Bates says he’d cut off his arm to have her back and Thomas quips that they can’t have him wobbly at both ends. Carson and Hughes share some nice wine that was left over. He shows her some properties he’s looking at. He says they should go look at them first and then talk about what they think. Mary comes downstairs and asks her father why they can’t just get Anna out.

He says the lawyer heard that the police found something else out but won’t tell them what. Cora tells Robert, Mary and Tom that Susan is upset because she wasn’t invite to Brancaster. She says she told her so Susan wouldn’t hear it from someone else. Cora asks Robert why he was in York but he won’t say why. Mary tells George goodby and Robert says Edith almost said “come to Mummy” but stopped short. Cora says he still can’t say anything because it’s not their secret to out.

The family leaves and Carson tells Thomas to be sure and check every piece of luggage when it’s transferred in York. Thomas says he’s been on the train before. Violet comes to see them off and Robert says he’s surprised she came. She says she’s not a salmon who only swims back to the sea. Mary kisses her and says Granny can be maternal when she wants. Violet and Isobel are having a dinner to reunite the Kuragins. Robert says he’s sorry they will miss it. Violet tells him to go before he annoys her.

Carson sees them off with Violet and Isobel and they wave as the train leaves. Violet says Lord Sindbery, Branson and Barrow is not a recipe for a peaceful week of shooting. Isobel says it makes you wonder what they’ll be shooting at by week’s end. Molesely asks Daisy what she’ll work on while everyone is gone and she says she’s not sure why she should keep on with it. Mrs Patmore asks if she’s having another crisis and Daisy wonders about her plans.

Hughes asks why Mrs Patmore is up there and she says she came up for some air. The others are covering the furniture with drapes. On the train, Mary tells the others they have to be on their best behavior for Rose’s sake. Robert says they must not irritate Sinderby. Tom says maybe he shouldn’t have come along since Sinderby sees him as less than ideal. Mary says they stick by Tom and Edith says for once she agrees with Tom.

Robert seems uncomfortable and Cora asks what’s wrong but he won’t say. Edith frets over the nannies taking the children for an outing and wonders if it’s unsafe. Mary asks if she wants them shut up in the attic til their grown and says she’s the mother around here and isn’t panicking. Cora and Robert share a look at that remark to Edith. At the castle, they’re putting together a grand set up for the guests. His butler, Stowell, goes to see Sinderby and says he has the list of rooms.

Sinderby asks if the servants are being cooperative and he says they’d prefer to be taking orders from their own butler. Sinderby tells him he prefers to give orders to Stowell. Stowell asks Rachel if she’s sure she wants tea in the library and says the servants told him it’s usually served in the ante-library. Rachel says she wants it in the library and after he leaves she asks her husband why Stowell always thinks he knows better. Sinderby says it’s because Stowell does know better.

The cars pull up to Brancaster castle and Rose greets them warmly. She says Venice was wonderful but Atticus jokes there was water on all the streets. Robert says he was at Brancaster once before he was married to Cora. Rose says it will be cozy since they’re a small party. Rose asks her father in law if they can just use their Christian names since they’re so intimate there but he snaps at her that he has no Christian name.

Thomas introduces himself to Stowell as Robert’s valet but he says he knows he’s just temporary valet and says Mrs Bates sad story has reached their ears. Thomas says news travels fast. Stowell cuts him to the quick. He says Tom is without a valet and Stowell gets snarky and says few chaffeurs have valets then asks Tom how he can bear to wait on him. Thomas says we do what we have and tells Thomas he’ll help out as a footman. Stowell says they will find him a livery.

Stowell asks what Tom does when the others are shooting and Thomas says he’s sorry if they’re not up to his standards. He’s had enough of the uppity snob butler. Violet tells Isobel what time Princess Kuragin will be there and says she’s seen to getting her some clothes. She asks Isobel to be there early and says she’s asked Merton to be there to talk to the Princess. Isobel says she’s making it all sound so terribly fun.

Sinderby says Atticus has invited his friend Charlie Rogers and the agent Pelham along. Robert encourages him to ask Shrimpy to come along and says he’s a good shot. Sinderby says nothing. Sinderby says he’s invited some of the neighbors but they had some difficulty with their faith. Robert says the chance at good shooting has most Englishmen put their reservations aside. Tom asks for sugar for his tea and Stowell ignores him. Rose says Stowell is a snob and Mary says she won’t have it.

Denker coddles Violet and then she says every lady’s maid should know how to make a restorative broth. Spratt quips at Denker and says he doubts she can cook. Denker says we’ll see and Spratt says seeing is believing. Bates says he’s leaving first in the morning to see Anna and Hughes says she wishes they would let her have something they can send. They comment that it’s good he can visit a lot but only until she’s convicted.

Next morning they load up with dogs and guns for the shoot and Rachel insists on sticking by Tom for this outing. Sinderby is surprised but lets it go. Sinderby tells Mary that Robert sees upset because he won’t invite Shrimpy. Mary says wouldn’t it be better to just accept the divorce but he says he can’t pretend to approve of divorce. She asks can’t he learn to live with it for Rose’s sake. He walks away without a word.

Rachel asks Tom if he shot at a boy – he says he shot pigeons on his grandpa’s farm and she remarks it’s a difficult target. She asks if it was hard being part of their family and says they’re much more welcoming than the Sinderbys. He says he knows he was a shock to the system. Robert says Sinderby is a prig and Thomas loads his gun. Cora asks again where he went in York but then it’s time to shoot. Rachel cheers Tom on.

Bates says they have no case against Anna. But she says they found something out about her that she should have told him before. She says her father was a laborer who died when she was six. She says her family was left destitute until her mother remarried an iron worker. Anna says that her step-father abused her and her mother didn’t want to believe her. She says she knew what was coming so she kept a knife with her. She says he came to attack her and she cut him with a knife.

She says he screamed and the watch came. She says her mother got her step-father to say that he slipped and fell. She says the police found something in the record or says maybe her step-father told on her when he heard she was arrested. Bates says they will prove she’s not guilty. She asks if she ever doubts and he says he asked her the same when she came to visit him in prison. He says he has no doubt at all and she thanks him.

Edith asks Tom what the children are doing now and Robert says they’re being spoiled to death. Tom is passed over for bread and he has to mention it. The man backs up and offers it while looking away. Rose says Stowell doesn’t even like the family and talks bad about them at the back. Hughes tells Carson that the house they just looked at would need a lot of work to get it up to snuff. They head to look at the next one.

Prince Kuragin greets Violet, Isobel and Merton and asks where the Princess is. They tell him none of the rest of them have seen her – she went straight upstairs. Isobel asks wouldn’t he rather greet her alone at first but he says no and reminds them he hasn’t seen her in five years. Violet says the presence of strangers if often the only guarantee of good behavior. Mary complains to Baxter about Stowell and she tells the lady that he talks about Tom downstairs too.

Mary asks Baxter if she can get Thomas to put a black mark on Stowell to take him down. She tells Thomas and he says he’d like to and just needs to think about it. He asks where Sinderby’s valet is and is told he’s out and won’t be back until 10. Thomas says he has an idea and asks if Mary can help out. He says they need paper and pencil and tells her to come along. Spratt introduces the Princess and she comes down in one of Violet’s gown.

She greets Igor and Violet introduces the others but Princess Irina is haughty and difficult. Isobel says she would like to see Russian but Irina says Isobel has already missed the opportunity to see Russia. Violet asks if she has luggage and she says she has none and no possessions to put into luggage. Igor says misfortunes are tedious and says to be grateful to Violet. Irina says the last time they met, the circumstances were different but Violet pretends not to know what she’s talking about.

Thomas leaves a note for the cook and Baxter worries it will be traced back to them but Thomas says he knows what he’s doing. Atticus says Charlie is bringing a friend, Henry Tolbert, and that means that he can’t shoot. Sinderby says he can cancel the agent but Atticus says no. Mrs Patmore has made a lovely dinner for just a few of them. Carson is annoyed to hear that Daisy will eat with them. Mrs Patmore says he can share with the maids if this is too democratic for him.

Tom has to ask for wine when he’s skipped over and Sinderby asks Stowell to serve him. Then he’s served some strange food and asks what it is. Sinderby snaps and says he never asked for other food and asks why he’s being so rude to Tom. Sinderby snaps at him and says someone has played a joke on them. Stowell uses the word obviously which sets Sinderby off. He chastises him harshly in front of everyone and calls him a fool then tells him to get a decent dinner for him.

Mary tells Atticus she’s not keen on Stowell and they wonder what the fallout will be from the explosion. Irina complains and then says she’s going up to bed. Violet says her maid Denker will look after her. Irina says she will be more comfortable tonight than she ever will be again. It’s a strange remark. Violet asks Kuragin what time he’ll call for the Princess and he asks if that’s her decision. He asks if she really wants to say goodbye to him and she says it’s how it must be.

He says he doesn’t understand but she says he will and must. Spratt shows him to the car. Merton says he feels like a game of high stakes was played tonight but he can’t tell who won then he leaves too. Isobel asks Violet if she told Kuragin it’s a no and she says she has and says it was an immoral propsition but she savored it. She and Isobel share a laugh over it.

Cora demands to know what is wrong with Robert and what he’s hiding. He says he’s been having pains in his chest, side and stomach so he went to see a doctor who says he might have angina. Cora frets and he says it doesn’t mean he’s about to drop dead of a heart attack but needs more tests. She says he shouldn’t shoot but the doctor says he can do it if it relaxes him. He says he wants to speak to Edith to tell her everything is okay just in case something happened to him.

Violet tells Spratt to thank the cook and she says she needs less rich fare. Spratt says Denker should make a broth and Violet says she knows he’s teasing Denker but would like some. Denker can’t escape and has to agree to it. Robert comes to see Edith and says he knows about Marigold. She says she can’t give her up. He asks if she’s told Tom and she says no, but he might have guessed. She says only Mary doesn’t know. She asks for her father’s forgiveness.

Robert says Gregson was an honorable man and says he would have married her as soon as he could. Robert says they must do right by their child and need to keep it in the family. He says people can be unpleasant. She asks for his forgiveness and he says he needs hers as well. He kisses her goodnight and tells her to sleep well. She cries tears of relief. Thomas tells Baxter he has bigger plans now for Stowell. He goes and knocks on his door and tells Stowell that he has his sympathy.

He says Thomas showed great restraint. Stowell gives him a piece of paper and says to write something down. He scribbles down a sentence. Stowell compares it to the note and says it wasn’t him. Thomas asks why would it be. Stowell says the staff resents him and doesn’t like taking orders from him. Stwell says his Lordship has dirty secrets and Thomas asks to be surprised.

Next day, the younger crowd wonders about the valet letter and Mary says she heard it was from the castle staff. She asks why Rose and Atticus were in a huddle and Rose says Atticus has been offered a job in New York and then he asks Tom about his plan. He says he’s going to Boston in the New Year. Edith says Mary hates the idea of being left behind when people move on with their lives and Mary clarifies insultingly that she hates the idea of being left behind with Edith.

Denker comes to see Mrs Patmore for help making a broth. She says Spratt had her cornered and she can’t trust Mrs Potter – thinks she’s in league with the enemy Spratt. Bates asks the lawyer how much attention the police will pay to Anna’s past. He says she was attacked and then responded with a knife then says since his step-father didn’t file charges at the time, they can get it made inadmissable which means no case.

Isobel tells Merton she’s not angry with his sons but says they can’t stand her. Merton says he was wretched with their mother and says they were ill-suited and he doesn’t want them to ruin his first chance at real happiness. Isobel says she can’t come between he and his sons and deal with their loathing. He asks if that’s the only barrier and she says it is. He says he takes it as a challenge. They show Denker how to make a broth but it’s too salty and oniony. Daisy tastes and they all gag.

Daisy offers to sneak a bottle over and she can chop ingredients for show for Spratt then heat up Daisy’s. The lawyer speaks to Bates later and he says they have a strong motive and can prove opportunity. Then they have a witness who identified her from being nearby. He says the motive form the earlier case makes their accusations quite strong. Thomas tells Stowell that dinner is ready so he can announce. Stowell tells Thomas he said too much last night but Thomas tells him not to worry.

Mary asks Atticus if he’ll shoot tomorrow or will give way for the guest. She says he hopes the neighbor is being accommodating and she says it’s funny how people take advantage. Tom jokes that they can’t all be as unselfish as Mary. She gives him a terse smile at his humor. Carson tells Hughes he thinks he knows which property they should make an offer on. Hughes says she has to tell him the truth. She says she never lies but there are things she doesn’t say.

Carson sits and Hughes says she allowed this folly to go on because it was a nice idea and would have liked to come in with him. She says she can’t come in with him on it. She says she has a sister and he says he thought she had no one left. She says that’s what she wanted him to think. Hughes says her sister is not quite right in the head and after her mother died, she had to pay for her care. Carson says it must have cost a fortune and she says every penny. She says she has no savings and is a pauper.

He asks about her retirement and she says she can’t retire – she says she’ll have to work as long as anyone will let her. She says he’s earned his project but there’s no place for her in it. Carson says he’s ashamed for bullying her and says he’s been insensitive. She says she enjoyed the dream and hates for stringing him along. Bates says he had a telegram from Murray and asks to use the phone – he fears it’s bad news.

Sinderby sorts the shooting but Rose tells Edith to go where she likes. Mary is with Henry who is shooting. She asks if he’s Roger’s guest and asks if he shoots a lot. He says not at this level and she says that explains it then says it’s nothing. She says Atticus isn’t shooting today to make room for him. He asks why someone didn’t just say there was no room and she says it would be inhospitable. She tells him to forget she said anything.

He asks if her husband is shooting and she says she’s a widow. He asks if he passed in the war but Mary says no. She encourages him as he shoots and he says it’s a fluke but it seems not to be. Edith is with the agent Pelham and says he’s distantly related to the old Lord Hexham. He says when his father died he left the Army and then cousin Peter felt sorry and made him agent. Edith asks if he has burning ambitions but he says none really then asks her about her unfulfilled dreams.

She says today she’s happy. Daisy drops by the Dower House and says she was just looking in on Denker. He asks what’s in her basket and seems it’s empty. She says she’s headed to the shops on her way back but he seems suspicious. Isobel tells Violet she talked to Dickie about his sons and has a letter from Larry Gray. She reads it to her. Larry writes that he thought again about their marriage and says his feelings are unchanged and he doesn’t care to reconsider again and asks her to dissuade his father.

Violet asks if she’s shown it to Merton yet. She says she’s not sure if she will. Violet says she’s going to take it lying down. Then Violet says the one consolation is that Dr Clarkson will be delighted. She giggles while Isobel glares at her. Robert has a telegram for Murray about Anna’s trial then he has chest pains. Cora says no more shooting. Atticus asks how he can help and Robert asks him to take his place for that afternoon. Edith tells Pelham he could send for Atticus’ guns.

They worry about Anna. Mary tells Henry that he’s off the hook since Robert gave up his spot for Atticus. He asks her to stop scowling at him and says he had no bad intentions. Spratt corners Denker and says he thinks she’s going to take credit for Daisy’s excellent soup. He found the bottle and poured it down the sink. He says she has to make it for herself then says it’s better that way.

Sinderby asks Robert how he’s feeling and he says better. Mary asks her mother if Robert is ill and she says she’s not sure. Someone shows up and Sinderby asks who the hell this is. Rose asks Sinderby to tell her her name and that she’ll save him. He says it’s Diana Clark and Rose runs over to greet her like they are old friends. Rachel asks his name and Diana says Daniel and she says that’s her husband’s name too.

Rose tells her that the telegram was sent dishonestly but she’ll cover. Robert asks what’s going on and Mary says she asked Thomas to get Stowell in trouble but it looks like it’s out of hand. Sinderby sits looking tense and Rachel asks what’s wrong. He says he needs a lie down. Mary asks Rose about her friend and Rose pulls her aside to explain. Mary also plays along like she knows her and then Robert joins in. She says she’s been well until Rachel walked away.

Diana says she wishes Sinderby would come to speak to her. Robert figures this out and he says crikey. Diana asks who would do this and why. Rose says she knows who but not why. Stowell is looking very worried but is frozen in place. Bates is headed out and asks Molesley a favor. He asks him to give a couple of envelopes to Carson later. Molesely says he would help with Anna any way he could and Bates thanks him for his kindness. He says delivering the letters would be help enough.

Rose sees Diana off and she thanks Rose for saving her from a hideous situation. She begs Rose not to think ill of him. Rose says it’s good to think he’s got clay feet like the rest of them. She heads off. Edith comes to speak to Pelham. He says he can’t find his white tie. Mary tells Rose that Stowell looks terrified. Rose calls him over and asks how he knows about Mrs Clark. He asks if she’ll tell Sinderby. She says she hasn’t decided but asks him to be more polite to Tom. He agrees right away.

Sinderby corners Robert, Mary and Rose and thanks them. He says he’s humiliated and wonder who plans it. He asks if they can keep this among them so Rachel and Atticus won’t be hurt. He says it could have all been worse and says Rose saved him. He calls her kind, clever and resourceful. He says they are lucky to have her in the family and says he’ll invite her parents to stay as soon as possible. He says it’s ill advised to throw stones while living in a glass house.

He says he’s had a gramophone put in for them to enjoy. The girls run out and Robert tells Sinderby that Rose will love him forever if he’ll let her. Sinderby says he sees that now. Hughes and Carson read the letter saying that Bates is going to confess to pushing the man. They wonder that it’s too bad that Bates will confess and that the ticket is lost. Molesley asks for the key to Bates’ cottage to look for a clue. Hughes says he can.

The young people dance to the record. Stowell offers to get Tom anything he’d like but Tom thanks him and says no. Mary says that makes it all worth it and Henry asks what but she says it’s too much to explain but the butler is back in his box. He asks what was going on with the woman and why was Sinderby panicking. He lays out what he saw clearly and Mary says she won’t answer any of them but is impressed that he asked them.

Tom asks Edith if she’s missing Marigold. She asks what he’s trying to say. He says these are his last months in Downton and she’s always been his ally. He says there were quite a few Marigolds where he grew up. He says his cousin brought up her daughter as her sister. She says she told her father he’d guess. She says Mary is the only one who doesn’t know and says her disinterest in her should keep her safe. Tom says it’s all safe with him.

Pelham comes to ask Edith to dance. He says she looks intense and she says they were talking about her ward at Downton. She asks about Lord Hexham. He says he’s in North Africa a lot. Molesley goes to the cottage and starts opening drawers and cabinets. He finds a box of photos and leafs through them. He finds a clear portrait of Bates and takes it with him. Mary finds Henry leaving the castle and he says he wanted to make an early start.

She says she feels bad for making him uncomfortable and he says he’ll be less cavalier in the future. She asks if he comes to Yorkshire and says maybe they’ll meet shooting. He says shooting isn’t his real sport – it’s cars. She admires the car but Henry clarifies that it’s his. He and Charlie hop in and drive away at top speed. Back at Downton, the cars pull up and Carson greets the family. The kids run up and Carson says Bates has gone but left him a letter.

Thomas asks Carson if he’s still on as valet and he says they need to think about it. Baxter says they must release Anna now. Robert says he thinks Bates is in hiding in Ireland. Mary says they need to set Anna free. Baxter asks Molesley if he’s still going to go to the pubs and she offers to go along with him. He says that would help a lot but he doesn’t want anyone to know unless it works. Robert says Murray told him that he could get Anna out tomorrow.

Robert tells Cora that Bates left instructions for how to get a message to him in Ireland. He asks Cora what he should do. She says tell the police but she says to keep it secret til they know more. He says it’s good they both have a criminal turn of mind. Anna arrives back to Downton with Murray and Robert comes to greet her. Anna says she’s only out on bail and asks if Bates is found innocent will she go to jail. She says neither of them did it and Mary says they’ll prove it.

Robert says he’ll ride to the station with Murray since he has to be in York. Mary invites her to come in with her but Anna insists on going in through the kitchen. Spratt finds Denker finishing her broth. She says he always judges her and he says her unmasking is at hand for her lies and deceit. Denker gags when she sniffs the broth. Violet comes into the kitchen at Spratt’s insistence. Violet asks to taste and dips a spoon in. She sips it and Spratt says he warned her. Violet says it’s delicious. Spratt says it can’t be.

Violet says his malice has ceased to be amusing. She asks Denker to save the broth for another day since she’s not hungry now. Spratt is stunned and Denker laughs then throws a napkin at his face. Cora asks Robert how it went in York. He says he’s not about to have a heart attack but has an ulcer. Edith says he must eat better. Cora says no booze and Robert says – steady on. He says they’ll have to negotiate. Mary asks him to lay off everything until Christmas eve.

Tom says that will give him a good send off. Robert says the painting sold well so they have the funds for the village. Carson says Molesely is getting a new footman. Thomas asks if he heard correctly and asks if he’ll give Andy a chance. Carson says he was out gadding with Denker but the others say they all liked him. It’s Christmas at Downton and there’s a giant tree. The children are helping to decorate then Tom clicks the lights on and the tree just glows.

Baxter and Molesley are still searching the pubs in York to give Bates an alibi. Carson comes to tell Hughes he bought the house. She’s wrapping gifts and tells him that Atticus is coming and Carson says his family doesn’t do Christmas. She says she’ll miss Tom once he goes to Boston. She says he’s a bridge between them all. Carson says he’s used to him now. Molesley asks to speak to Carson in private. They go with Baxter to see Robert, Cora and Mary.

Baxter says they checked pubs in York. Molesley says they found it. He says he had a photo of Bates and they spent their days off questioning landlords. He says they went to 60 or 70 pubs. He says they had a third left when they found Mr Pickeral and says the owner remembers Bates’ limp because he got angry that he tried to help him to a table then they talked to him about the war. Carson says that should turn over Bates’ pursuit but they wonder if it will cause Anna to be re-arrested.

Robert tells Baxter and Molesley they’ve done a fine thing. Robert calls Cora and Murray says there should be no problem getting the hunt for Bates called off. He says Anna should be in the clear because the witness is now having doubts that he saw her. Robert says he can’t stand the thought of Tom going and wishes he’d let Sibby stay but they know that won’t happen. She asks Robert to be careful if he decides to drink on Christmas eve and says he’ll be drunk on a snifter of brandy.

She says she’s glad the painting sold for so much since she spoiled it for him. He says she’s never spoiled anything and she says not to spoil Christmas Eve by drinking too much. The kitchen is all abuzz with cooking and Mrs Patmore encourages Daisy to pursue her passions. Merton rants to Isobel about Larry’s letter. She says she won’t change her mind but still thinks of him with affection. He says he loves her even though he’s old and played out. She says he’s not played out.

Isobel says it means a great deal but doesn’t want to set him against his children. Violet comes in and asks if it’s a lovers tryst. Merton says it was a moment of misery and says he must go and there’s nothing more to say anyway. Violet says that was sad and Isobel agrees. Anna sits staring at a photo of she and Bates and she’s sad. In the kitchen, Daisy wonders if they’re guests or servants tonight and Hughes says they’re both.

He asks Hughes if they can have a word later and she agrees. Edith is in the nursery when Tom finds her. She asks what he’s thinking. He says he’s taking photographs in his mind to take with him. Edith says she’ll miss him so much and he agrees. Mary comes in and he asks if they can take a moment to think of Sibyll. He says they are the three that should have grown old with her. They join hands and even Edith takes Mary’s hands which surprises Mary.

Mary says wherever she is they send her love and kisses for a happy Christmas. Robert laments that this is Sibby’s last Christmas there when he comes in on them. He asks if Tom would leave her while he gets settled. Tom says he won’t be he loves the way that Robert loves her. They go down to greet the tenants. They all sing carols around the tree. Rose teaches Atticus the words to the tune since he’s unfamiliar having grown up without Christmas.

Robert says them all to have a drunk and food. Cora says he’s already had some drinks. Denker takes some punch and Spratt fusses. She calls him a dreary little man. Violet tells them both no dissension. Atticus tells Mary he’s never down Christmas before and she says if a Downton one doesn’t put him off, nothing will. Atticus says that reminds him he’s not part of two families and Rose agrees and says it’s lovely. They kiss.

Violet pulls Isobel into a private room and tells her to close the door. She says they’ve earned a moment of peace after their year. Isobel says with proposals and propositions it’s a surprise at their age. She asks about the Kuragins and Violet says she and the Prince fell madly in love when they met. She says she and Igor decide to elope and they even left to set sail on the yacht. She says her maid told the Princess and she chased them and says Irina yanked her out of the carriage bodily and then threw her into a cab and sent her back to Lord Grantham.

Isobel says Irina saved her from a life of ruin. Violet says within a week she realized Irina pulled her back from the brink of an abyss and saved her and says now she repaid the Princess by saving her. Violet says they were the Edwardians. Robert finds them and chuckles drunkenly. He tells them to get back outside with everyone else for the party. They groan and go. Tom tells Mary she should take over his office. Cora says Mary needs to stop Robert. He goes to make a speech but Tom steps in to thank him and sing a tune.

Robert tries to speak but then he says Mary and Edith are going to sing. Edith sits at the piano and plays while Mary sings. Carson pulls Hughes aside to talk. Violet looks sad as does Anna. Atticus is surprised to hear the song that’s unfamiliar to him. Hughes sits with Carson and offers him a drink. He says he shouldn’t have more but she says it’s Christmas. She says they should toast his new house but he says it’s not only his. He says he registered it in both their names.

He says there’s no need to change a plan they’ve made. Hughes says she can’t accept. She says who knows what the future brings and says she doesn’t want him to be stuck with her. He says that’s the point, he does want to be stuck with her. She asks if she’s hearing him right. He says he’s asking her to marry him. She’s stunned. He asks – well? She says he could knock her down with a feather. He asks if she’s offended and she says that’s the last thing in the world she is.

Carson says she can take as long as she needs to decide because he doesn’t want to marry anyone else. Hughes toasts and says they’re celebrating the fact she can still get a proposal at her age. She says of course she’ll marry him and says she thought he’d never ask. They’re both choked up – Carson is about to cry. Robert tells Tom he’s going to miss him very much – he says from wine comes truth and tells Tom that he’s very fond of him.

He says he always has a home to come back to. Tom says he will always think of Downton as his home and says this would all amaze Sibyll. He asks what Marigold should call him as he picks Sibby up. She says Donk and Robert agrees that Marigold should also call him Donk. Robert addressed the crowed and says Tom has helped him navigate them to the modern world. He says they regret him going but wish he and Sibby well in their new life. He asks for applause as a send off.

Cora tells Robert well done and says he didn’t sound drunk at all. He reminds her he was trained as a soldier. The family sings a carol with everyone. Bates stands just outside and Mrs Patmore sees him but he motions to shush her. He sneaks up behind Anna and whispers Happy Christmas. She’s stunned and he pulls her away. She tells him she loves him and he says they can worry about everything else later. They slip away to celebrate alone and he pulls her in for a kiss then picks her up into a hug.