Annie and Auggie are back together again — but not like that.
On Tuesday's Covert Affairs (10/9c, USA), the pair will hit the field in Paris with a twist. In pursuit of an asset who has history with Auggie (Christopher Gorham) to help in the Chicago bombing case, the two will swap roles, with him as operative and Annie (Piper Perabo) as handler.
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"It was really fun to do," Gorham tells TVGuide.com. "We hadn't done that role reversal before. Before, when they were in the field together, they were working as a team, both as operatives. This time, she's the one who's supposed to be behind the scenes. It'll reveal a lot about each of them and how they do their jobs."
Unlike Auggie, who obviously was a former op, Annie has never been a handler before, which proves to be a challenge for the go-getting spy. Complicating matters is the fact that the asset's baggage with Auggie will shape his decisions in a do-or-die situation. "[The asset] is a big presence from Auggie's past ... it might be somebody the audience is excited to see," Gorham says. "Auggie's not acting in a way he might normally if there wasn't that history and that has an effect on Annie. She's not used to hanging back and she wants to get the job done. The choices she makes in that role really affect her and Auggie's relationship for the rest of the season. They're in a place you haven't seen them in."
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Annie's questionable decision-making comes on the heels of Auggie's own big move in last week's episode (watch it here), when he wiped her medical records to keep her heart ailment secret from the CIA. "This plays off of that," Gorham teases. "He did something huge for her. Trust has been a big, key part of their relationship throughout the series and that gets tested in a big way."
Also getting tested? Annie's new, all-business approach to work. That doesn't necessarily mean that Auggie wants to get back together — Hayley (Amy Jo Johnson) is still in the picture after all — but it'll call into question just how emotionally detached one should be on the job. "It's something they always grapple with, navigating the professional and the personal. That's the theme of the season. She was confident she could do it, but now she's seeing how hard it is," Gorham says, adding that Auggie meant it when he said they were "good" after Annie asked for them to simply be colleagues again in the season premiere.
"I think he understands," he says. "He's been doing this longer than she has. He's been to war twice. He's lost friends. He's gone through what Annie's going through. He knows she just needs some time to process what just happened and she's still growing. If she had come back and said something different, I think he would've been open to it had the timing been right, but she'd been gone for four months. They broke up in Episode 7 of last season and they didn't see each other for a while, and time really did pass."
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But does that mean Auggie's over her? He clearly wasn't inconsolably pining away for Annie while she was gone, and things are slowly getting more serious between him and Hayley. "I think he has closed that chapter for now," Gorham says. "He's moved on and he's kind of wrestling with the idea that maybe he's the guy who will stay single and will have long-term relationships with different people throughout his life but never gets to have the white picket fence with a wife and kids. I don't know if that makes him pressed as much — I don't know if he necessarily thinks it's a bad thing.
"And if he isn't over her," he quips, "he might be after this!"
Covert Affairs airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on USA.