Pretty Little Liars: What Happened the Night Ali Disappeared? A Timeline of Events
Credit: ABC Family    

Pretty Little Liars

Pretty Little Liars: What Happened the Night Ali Disappeared? A Timeline of Events

In the Pretty Little Liars Season 4 finale, Alison DiLaurentis (Sasha Pieterse) tells the Liars the story of the day she fake-died. Here’s a rundown of the events leading up to Ali getting buried alive and deciding to fake her own death...

Ali steals the N.A.T. Club videos from Ian

Alison started the day with Ian at Hilton Head Resort in South Carolina. She decided to spend the weekend with him to get away from “A” — but Melissa showed up in a jealous rage. Ian convinced her that Ali meant nothing to him while Ali listened from the other room. While Melissa and Ian spoke, Ali stole the incriminating N.A.T. Club videos from Ian’s computer — including the video of Jenna sexually harassing Toby. She leaves before Ian can stop her.

Ali arrives back in Rosewood on a private plane

Alison arrives back in Rosewood from Hilton Head, South Carolina that morning. She is flown in on a private plane, however, arriving back at least six hours prior to when the Liars originally thought she returned.

She met with someone in Brookhaven

In Season 2, Episode 24: “If These Dolls Could Talk,” Spencer notices a series of classified ads in some of Ali’s old newspapers that the teenage girl was using as a clandestine way to correspond with someone, presumably “A.” Ali was scheduled to meet that person at the doll shop in Brookhaven on the day of her disappearance, but we’re not sure if the meeting ever happened. Alison didn’t mention it when she told the Liars the story of the day of her disappearance in the Season 4 finale.

Pretty Little Liars: What Happened the Night Ali Disappeared? A Timeline of Events
Credit: Eric McCandless/ ABC Family    

Ali visits Jenna in the hospital

Ali goes to visit Jenna to tell her that, if she ever returns to Rosewood, she will “bury her.” (In retrospect, poor choice of words.) Alison uses the video she has of Jenna forcing Toby to have sex with him as blackmail material. She thought Jenna might be “A,” but receives a text from “A” as she is walking out, and realizes it can’t be Jenna.

The storage locker

Alison rents a storage locker sometime during the day to keep the videos — both of Toby and Jenna, and others presumably taken by the N.A.T. Club —safe. She puts the videos into her lunchbox, and leaves them in the storage locker.

She meets up with the Liars

It is at this point that Alison pretends to the Liars to have just returned home via bus. She is also pretending to have come from visiting her grandmother, though the Liars later discover she was at the Hilton Head. Spencer calls Ali on the Hilton Head resort tag on her suitcase, but Ali just brushes the question off.

Ali sees “A”’s threats on her bedroom mirror

After or while meeting with the Liars, Ali goes into her bedroom to change. She sees a note from “A” written on mirror. The anonymous villain threatens to kill her that night.

She gives Emily a snow globe

At some point during the afternoon, she gives Emily a snow globe with the key to the storage locker she just rented hidden inside of it. She doesn’t stay long because she has a prior engagement with someone.

She has dinner with her family

Though we haven’t seen it, Aria mentions that, before coming to the sleepover, Ali has dinner with her family. Presumably after dinner, Mrs. DiLaurentis tells Ali that she can’t go out that night. Mrs. D. has gotten a number of phone calls that seem to worry her (possibly from Radley?). Ali ignores her mother, stealing her sleeping pills and heading over to the sleepover.

Pretty Little Liars: What Happened the Night Ali Disappeared? A Timeline of Events
Credit: ABC Family    

Melissa is mad

The night of the disappearance, Melissa was on a rampage for Ali. She shows up at the DiLaurentis house looking for her. It is unclear whether she ever finds Alison, but she does talk to CeCe later that night. CeCe happens to be wearing an almost identical outfit to Ali and, when Jason sees CeCe and Melissa talking outside of his house, he initially mistakes CeCe for his sister. Melissa was allegedly trying to get CeCe to talk some sense into Ali, presumably about the videos.

Jenna and Garrett run-in

Alison runs into Jenna and Garrett in the backyard of her house. She teases Jenna, reminding her of her promise to stay away, and a blind Jenna lashes out at her. Garrett pretends to kill Alison with a nearby field hockey stick, presumably to assuage Jenna, but he and Alison both obviously know she is still alive.

Alison and CeCe

We’re not sure when or if this happened, but — according to CeCe — Alison called her that night, freaking out about the videos. They eventually meet up to talk and Alison leaves, supposedly to retrieve the videos. CeCe claims that was the last time she saw Alison.

Sleepover time

As seen in the very first scene from the pilot, Ali joins the Liars at a sleepover in Spencer’s barn. They gossip and drink. Unbeknownst to them, Alison slips some of her mother’s sleeping pills in her drink. She waits for them to fall asleep, then leaves the sleepover.

Pretty Little Liars: What Happened the Night Ali Disappeared? A Timeline of Events
Credit: Eric McCandless/ABC Family Channel © 2014 Disney ABC Television Group    

Ali meets up with Toby

Outside of the Hastings family barn, Alison meets up with Toby. He thanks her for helping him free himself from Jenna’s control. Toby gives Ali his sweater because it is cold and watches her get into a car with an unidentified man.

Ali chats with Ezra

We now know the unidentified man Alison drove away with was Ezra. He has driven to Rosewood because he just found out Alison was lying about her age. She’s not sure why he’s so angry given that they never had sex, but he more-or-less tells her that he nevers wants to see her again.

The kissing rock

Alison meets up with makeout partner Ian at the infamous kissing rock. They film a video in which it initially looks like Ian has killed Ali. The vid goes on to show Ali getting up, showing that Ian didn’t kill her. Given that Ian has gotten back together with Melissa, this is Ian and Ali’s last rendezvous. Before she leaves, Ali threatens Ian: she tells him that, if he or Melissa are the ones sending the threatening messages, then they better stop. If not, she will release the N.A.T. Club videos. He tells her that there are secrets on those videos that would hurt her family, too.

Spencer and Ali fight

Back at the barn, Spencer is waiting for Ali — and she’s pissed. Alison has been bullying her to tell Melissa about Spencer and Ian’s kiss all summer. Spencer agrees, but basically tells Ali that she’s dead to her. Ali storms out, and Spencer follows, picking up a shovel. A bottle of Adderall falls from Spencer’s pocket, and Ali picks it up, realizing that this is the reason why Spencer didn’t stay asleep from the sleeping pills. Spence begs her not to tell her parents about them. Alison promises she won’t, telling Spencer to go back to the sleepover.

Alison tries to blackmail Byron

Byron claims that Alison had been blackmailing Byron for money in exchange for keeping the secret of his affair with one of his students. That night, he told Ali that he wouldn’t give her any more money. Alison says she met up with him to threaten him, just in case he was “A.”

Ali goes back to the sleepover

After threatening Byron, Ali goes back to the sleepover to wait for another text from “A.” Another one never comes. She leaves the sleepover to go back home, confident that — whomever “A” was — she has successfully threatened him or her into silence. When she leaves the sleepover, all of the Liars are still asleep.

Pretty Little Liars: What Happened the Night Ali Disappeared? A Timeline of Events
Credit: Eric McCandless/ABC Family Channel © 2014 Disney ABC Television Group    

Ali gets attacked and buried alive

When Ali is in sight of her house (and her mother in the window), she is hit over the head with a rock and knocked out. When she starts to regain consciousness, she is being buried alive by her mother — who mistakenly thinks she is dead, and is trying to protect whomever almost-killed her. Ali tries to let her mother know she is still alive, but is unsuccessful.

Mrs. Grunwald pulls Ali from the ground

Mrs. Grunwald comes to Ali’s rescue, pulling her from the ground and driving her to the hospital. When Mrs. G. heads into the hospital to get help, Ali makes a break for it. She doesn’t feel safe in Rosewood anymore.

Mona picks Ali u

Mona finds Ali wandering along the side of the road. She picks her up, checks them both into the Lost Woods Resort under the alias Vivian Darkbloom, and convinces Ali to rest. She also convinces Ali to stay dead. Ali goes along with the plan, only later realizing that Mona herself was “A.” Check and mate, Mona Vanderwaal.

Are there any clues we’re missing? Sound off in the comments below!

Catch the next episode of Pretty Little Liars on June 10, 2014 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Kayti Burt is a contributing writer for Wetpaint Entertainment with a penchant for all things pop culture. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!