At the book group at Julia’s house, the majority of the staff can’t take ‘The Sparkling Spirit’ seriously. Daniel clearly hasn’t read it all; Zara thinks its sickly sweet nonsense, only Mrs Tembe seems excited by a literary discussion.
Simon is completely nonplussed making a deadpan joke about the book making him feel suicidal. Elaine finds him in the kitchen later and concedes that this evening is supposed to be for his benefit and Simon tells her that he doesn’t feel anything anymore, he just feels numb.
Julia calls the meeting to order in the living room and demands they all remain positive about the book. Mrs Tembe produces an enormous folder of notes to deconstruct the story, much to the others distress.
Zara later decides it’s time to get the party started and takes Simon to the kitchen for some sambuca. They start to have fun and she challenges him to list the reasons for Simon Bond to live.
In the hallway, Julia laments the fact that it’s all gone wrong but Elaine isn’t so sure and takes Julia to the kitchen where they overhear Simon bellowing with laughter – finally starting to feel something once again.
Elsewhere, when Jimmi’s childhood pen pal turns up, the pair of them learn some sickeningly touching lessons about themselves.