Everyone’s back from their overnight dates, which means it’s time for the couples to be reunited at the final bonfire. In this episode, we see an unsure Rick and Ashley G hash things out with Mark. Then, it’s Kate and David’s turn to meet and see if there’s still hope yet for their relationship.
Time to say goodbye
As soon as everyone returns from their overnight dates to the villas, Mark shows up with big news: their time as couples on Temptation Island is coming to an end. At the girls villa, Kareem encourages Esonica to make her decision based on her personal growth, Kate expresses appreciation for Dom’s ongoing support, and Ashley H tells Ben that she’s not going to let Casey talk her into anything. At the guys villa, Rick says he’ll “always have a friend in Medinah,” Gavin thanks Payton for helping him evolve, Rachel gives some final words of encouragement to Casey, and David reminds Toneata that he needs to focus on his bonfire with Kate. She understands.
Rick and Ashley G’s final bonfire
Rick and Ashley G both feel a great degree of uncertainty going into the final bonfire. “Maybe he’s outgrown me,” Ashley tells Esonica worriedly. She adds that she’s changed her approach after her argument with KB, and that she hopes Rick can forgive her.
As they reunite at the bonfire, Mark asks Rick to share first and for Ashley to simply listen. Rick recaps the various ebbs and flows of his relationship with Medinah and tells Ashley about his growth on Temptation Island. He’s better now at expressing emotions and handling disagreement; “I learned now that I never really handled our conflict in the best way,” he says. He adds that while he was disappointed with some of Ashley’s actions, he never gave up on her or their relationship.
Ashley’s turn. She remembers the day of the first date selection, when Rick publicly exposed her insecurities by saying he was taking the handcuffs off. “I stopped caring at that point,” she tells him. She added that she eventually realized that she would sometimes allow herself to play the victim, rather than speak up on her own behalf. “I figured I would understand what is next for us, and honestly I still really don’t,” she admits.
Mark leaves Ashley with three choices: leave with Rick, leave with someone else, or leave alone. Before she comes to a decision, she holds a dialogue with Rick, who explains how her tryst with KB hurt him, and that while he was trying to work forward by forming an emotional connection with Medinah, he saw Ashley going backwards. Mark asks Rick if he can forgive Ashley. He does, and they kiss and leave Temptation Island together smiling in each other’s arms. “We good now,” says Rick.
Kate and David’s final bonfire, pt. 1
David came to Temptation Island hoping to lower his emotional walls. “I did become more emotional,” he says in reflection. “Unfortunately, it wasn’t with Kate.” He adds that his transgressions had the positive of allowing him to see what he truly wanted in a relationship. Before David enters the bonfire, Kate lets Mark know where she’s at emotionally: “Right now I feel really strong and comfortable in my own skin, and found this new confidence, and almost this brand new girl who is truly ready to take on the world.”
Kate goes first. She starts off by thanking David for bringing her to Temptation Island. “I truly found myself on this island,” she says. “I feel like I know more than ever exactly what it is that I want, I know my worth, and I know what I deserve. And you’ve helped me to see what I don’t deserve.” She then criticizes his actions on no uncertain terms; she calls his promises “complete and utter bullshit” and adds, “I think you selfishly and cowardly brought me here for your own gains.”
David begins by apologizing to Kate for bringing her on this journey. He insists that his intentions were pure and argues that his bonfire tears have been evidence of his emotional growth. “I know my feelings don’t really matter right now, but just know I felt terrible about that, and I’m truly sorry,” he tells her. In the spirit of transparency, he launches into a laundry list of his transgressions on Temptation Island. Before he gets too far, Kate cuts him off: “You don’t have to tell all of America that you just whored yourself out.”