The Sept. 14 episode of The Real Housewives of Orange County started off with a bang as Meghan Edmonds went to dinner with some of the women and shared the results of her “investigation” into Brooks Ayers’ past. Things got awkward (and nasty) at Shannon Beador’s Aries-themed party after Brooks learned the extent of Meghan’s prying and finally confronted her face-to-face about the allegations that he was faking his battle with cancer. How did the Housewives handle the new information and who was left to duke it out with the OG of the OC Vicki Gunvalson? Read on to find out!
Girls’ (Gossip) Night Out
After some extensive — and impressive — investigating, Meghan gathered some of the women for dinner to dish further about Brooks and the allegations that he was faking having cancer. While waiting for Shannon to arrive, Meghan vented to Heather Dubrow (who was clutching a glass of champagne, of course) about her frustrations with her stepdaughter, Hailey, who had thrown a 200-person party the previous weekend without supervision and subsequently trashed the house.
“Well, you don’t really have the authority to step in,” Heather said, echoing the same sentiments about the boundaries of a stepmother that were expressed during a recent group trip to Tahiti.
The conversation immediately shifted once Shannon sat down and things got serious. Fast. Meghan informed the ladies that she had called Brooks’ doctor, pretending to be a cancer patient, and asked about possible treatment plans. When the office informed her that the doctor didn’t treat the specific type of cancer that Brooks claimed he was suffering from, Meghan went into full-blown detective mode.
“I’m going to get to the bottom of it the best that I can — legally,” she told the camera.
Shannon then expressed her frustration with Brooks’ web of lies and how she felt manipulated. “[Vicki] said ‘I need your help,’ and the next day I dropped everything,” she recalled. After reaching out to a close friend and leading doctor who specialized in Brooks’ alleged form of cancer, Shannon pulled some strings and got him an appointment. On the way to the doctor, however, Brooks claimed to have gotten two flat tires and he never made it to the office — or tried to reschedule.
Tamra Judge took a much-needed break from the Brooks cancer drama by setting her mother up on a blind date. As a glam squad worked their magic, Tamra and her son, Ryan, stood closely by, giving last-minute fashion advice.
“We’re pimping Grandma out,” Tamra joked. “She’s such a hooch.”
Although Tamra was less-than-thrilled about her mother’s outfit choice, a low-cut zebra top and tight black pants, the mother-son duo drove the new bachelorette to the restaurant for her date.
“He looks like he might have a heart attack if he had to go on a job,” Tamra teased after first seeing her mother’s suitor. The fitness enthusiast and her son relocated to a nearby table so they could spy on the date and spend some quality time together.
“Are you sure you want to get married?” she asked Ryan, who had recently called off his wedding to Sarah, his fiancée and mother of his child, Ava.
“I don’t know,” he responded. “I don’t want to do it because it’s convenient. I’m going to do it one time and that’s it.”
Ryan explained that his reluctance to marry was caused by witnessing his mother’s past volatile relationships, especially with ex-husband Simon. Tamra then suggested that he consider marriage counseling at a church, describing the new sense of comfort that she received from religion.
“I feel like if Ryan goes that route, he’ll get help too,” she said.
Calm Before the Aries Storm
In order to celebrate “the year of the Ram,” Shannon invited all of the ladies, including former Housewife Lizzie Rovsek, to an Aries-themed bash at her house, which was decked out with paper lanterns, floral arrangements, and even a dragon statue in the pool.
As guests started to arrive, Heather, Meghan, and Shannon filled Tamra in on their dinner conversation a few nights before and expressed more doubt about Brooks’ health.
“I just have such a pit in my stomach after our conversation,” Shannon started. “I feel as though I’m between a rock and a hard place.”
In addition to calling Brooks’ doctor and pretending to be a prospective patient, Meghan also revealed to the women that she had gotten in contact with one of his ex-girlfriends via text message. “She did confirm that she dated Brooks,” Meghan said, explaining that she only contacted her after reading a blog comment in which the ex claimed that Vicki’s boyfriend had lied about having cancer in the past. The women tried to make sense of this new information, unsure exactly how to use it.
“If I even question Vicki and ask if Brooks has cancer, she is going to freak out,” Tamra vented. “I don’t know what to do.”
Meanwhile, Brooks’ ex-girlfriend had already informed him of the correspondence, and he and Vicki were devising a plan to confront Meghan. “I”m going to clear the air. I want to find out what the motivation is,” he said in the limo en route to the party. “It’s deplorable.”
Living Room Showdown
Brooks and Vicki’s arrival alone proved too much for Heather, who scoffed, “It’s so phony, I can’t do it,” while walking away from the couple before they could reach the group. After a round of awkward greetings and uncomfortable small talk, Brooks insisted that he and Vicki speak with Meghan and her husband, Jim Edmonds, in private. The foursome moved to the living room and dove right in.
“I’m trying to figure out what your motivation is,” Brooks said to Meghan. “It breeches my boundaries to be reaching out to someone from my past.”
“It’s stalkerish,” Vicki shouted before mentioning the need for a restraining order.
“I haven’t been the only one asking questions,” Meghan shot back, alluding to the statement from Tamra’s psychic, who said that he “just doesn’t see” the cancer in Brooks, during a reading with some of the other women. “I never said you were faking. I said there were holes.”
Vicki tried to defend her boyfriend by insisting that Brooks’ doctors told him to take a break from his chemotherapy, which contradicts his statement during his birthday party at CUT Fitness earlier in the season where he claimed that his doctors wanted to pursue a “more aggressive” treatment. Despite the inconsistent alibi, the couple insisted that Meghan was spewing lies and getting too involved in his personal business.
“If there is a question mark, I’m going to seek answers,” Meghan said. She then accused Brooks of making disparaging remarks about her marriage to husband Jim. When asked who her source was, Meghan replied, “Tamra.”
“I don’t talk to Tamra,” Brooks shot back. “Consider your source.”
When Meghan returned to the party, she immediately pulled Tamra aside and repeated Brooks’ “source” comment.
“Game on dude,” Tamra yelled, making a quick break from Meghan in hot pursuit of Brooks.
“Are you talking about me lying?” Tamra said after she finally found him on the other side of the party. Brooks immediately denied the allegations. “Well then what did you say?” she added. When he couldn’t conjure a response, Tamra got close to his face and yelled, “Why don’t you give a straight answer for one time in your f—king life?”
Vicki quickly intervened, prompting Brooks to make a swift exit, and concluding the episode in typical RHOC fashion — with the two women fighting over Brooks.
“You’re a mother of four and a grandmother,” Vicki said in the last moments. “Start acting like it.”
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