Happily Ever After (How I Met Your Mother)
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|"Happily Ever After"|
|How I Met Your Mother episode|
|Directed by||Pamela Fryman|
|Written by||Jamie Rhonheimer|
|Original air date||November 3, 2008|
This article's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (December 2015) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
The day after Stella ran out on their wedding, Ted is unusually happy. His friends (other than Barney, who is just happy Ted isn't married) are worried about him, thinking that he is repressing his emotions. Over the course of two weeks, the group tries to be there for Ted, but he insists he is fine. Eventually, the group becomes frustrated, and pushes him to unleash his emotions. Though he refuses, he reveals that he has a map of Manhattan with parts covered in red marker pen which he avoids in order to not run into Stella (though this largely confines him). Using the map, they decide to go to dinner at a restaurant recommended by one of Lily's friends.
Unfortunately, it soon turns out that friend was actually Stella, who appears at the restaurant while the group is waiting to eat. Panicking, Ted ducks under the table, with the rest of the group reluctantly following his example. Stella places an order to go, so they decide to wait for her to leave. Lily tells Ted he is being stupid, and says he should face Stella. Ted replies that Lily would do the same thing in his position, if "Gasser" walked in.
Lily reveals that, in ninth grade, she sat next to a boy named Michael Sasser, who was on the edge of becoming a cool kid. In one lesson, Lily lets out a loud fart, and rather than be humiliated in front of her friends, blamed Sasser, giving him the nickname 'Gasser', and he was teased so badly he had to switch schools. Back under the table, Lily says that if Michael were to walk in, she would go over and apologize, and face her fear, inviting Ted to do the same. Barney agrees, saying that there are plenty of women he slept with he doesn't want to see again, but he still would not hide from them. Ted mentions Becca DeLucci, which seems to upset Barney.
Becca is revealed to be a girl he used to visit in jail for a conjugal visit. On one visit, Barney tried to chat up another inmate, causing a fight to break out. Since then, Barney has received threats from Becca on multiple occasions. Ted decides that everyone wants to hide from someone, and that they should stay under the table until the problem goes away.
Robin agrees with Ted, saying she would hide from her father if he were to walk in. Flashbacks show Robin's father (Eric Braeden) to be disappointed to have a daughter instead of a son, and raised her as if she were a boy. Things got worse, when Robin's father found her kissing one of her hockey teammates when she was 14, leading to an exposition of the hockey equivalent of baseball metaphors for sex, based upon ice hockey. After this, she moved in with her mother.
Following Robin's revelation, Ted realizes all his friends are haunted by problems in their past, but it isn't too late for him to face up to his. He decides to talk to Stella, but finds she has already left. They hail a cab and follow her, but Ted still refuses to get angry, and instead wants to talk things out, despite protests from his friends. When they realize Stella is going to Tony's apartment instead of back to New Jersey, he is enraged that she wouldn't move into the city for him, but would for Tony. Finally, Ted unleashes his emotions, and his overjoyed friends cheer him on.
Ted imagines himself confronting Stella, telling her she made the wrong choice and should have been with him, as Tony will only let her down again. When he actually goes to talk to her, however, he sees her and Tony with their daughter, and decides that they were meant to be a family, his anger quickly subsiding. Future Ted announces that rather than swallowing your anger, or throwing it in someone's face, the best idea is to simply let it go, so you can move on. Finally, Ted gets rid of his map, so he can get on with his life.
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