Friday, 3 March 2017

Articles Episode Breakdown: End of the Road by DJ Forrest

Episode Breakdown

Torchwood: Miracle Day

End of the Road

By DJ Forrest

‘Sometimes I wonder what keeps us from falling straight through the Earth to the other side of the world.’ Sarah Drummond

Original Broadcast 26th August, 2011.

At the Colasanto Ranch in Nevada, Olivia addresses the guards at the main door. She informs them that the Torchwood party are with her, and that they have agreed to leave their weapons at the door. Rex informs her however that Esther is going to remain outside, keeping an open relay to a hard drive back in Los Angeles, so should something happen to Jack, Gwen and Rex when they head indoors, there will be a record. Olivia agrees that her guards will leave her alone. The Torchwood team enter. Esther climbs back into the car and listens in.
Olivia informs Jack that Angelo talked about him all the time. He smiles.
   ‘His immortal man in New York. He never forgot.’ She tells him.
Rex of course can’t understand why the world would ‘get screwed’ because of Jack and Colasanto.

   ‘You inspired him.’ Olivia tells Jack as they continue towards Angelo’s room. You proved immortality was possible. And he devoted the rest of his life to finding out how to live forever.’
   ‘And he did it? He’s still alive? He’s still young?’ Jack asks.
   ‘Oh yes, he’s still alive. Angelo Colasanto is still very much alive, but he’s not young.’
They all reach the room of an elderly man lying still in an elevated bed, kept alive by machinery.
   ‘My grandfather waited all this time to live forever. And his wish came true too late.’
Jack stares at the bedridden man.
   ‘What’s wrong with him?’ Jack asks.
   ‘At his age? Just about everything.’ She instructs a nurse to leave them alone. She leaves. Jack looks closer at the man and lifts open an eyelid and recalls to memory the last time he saw Angelo.
   ‘What happened to your eye?’
   ‘I was born with it.’
   ‘It’s him.’ Jack confirms, as if there was ever any doubt.
Olivia expects Jack to feel horrified to see her Grandfather, so old. But to Jack, who in age is much older, sees Angelo as much the younger man.
Rex holds up his mobile phone, keeping the line open. Olivia finds it comical, that after the way Torchwood operate, that they would risk a mobile phone. Rex in his usual gruff manner adds that they had to leave in a hurry. On another screen, the stock markets are falling rapidly. Rex questions it, while Esther hacks into the Colasanto estate CCTV.
   ‘It’s been inevitable since Miracle Day, which I reckon is part of the plan.’
Gwen, aggrieved lashes out at Olivia.
   ‘So, you put a gun to my daughter’s head for what, for this? So you get your revenge on Jack?’
   ‘We weren’t trying to hurt you. I was carrying out my grandfather’s final wish, to keep you safe.’
   ‘So you don’t want him dead?’
It shocks Jack too that the Colasanto family were protecting him, although Gwen finds their tactics a little crazy.
   ‘There’s a crucial distinction.’ Olivia points out, making it clear to them all. ‘My grandfather cared for you, I don't. You might be important in some way we've yet to work out, so it's best to keep you intact. But that's as far as the sentiment goes.’
Gwen struggles to find the right words as a comeback and instead asks for a drink. In the SUV Esther lightly orders a vodka. Unbeknown to her, a guard feels the cold barrel of a gun at the back of his neck.

All along a mantelpiece in Angelo’s room, Gwen and Jack stare at an array of younger Jack photographs.
   ‘These are all of you. Some of these are, that's Torchwood. That's Cardiff. When was that?’ She stares at a moustachioed Jack.
   ‘The seventies.’ Jack smiles.  
   ‘A moustache? My God, Jack. He watched you for decades.’ Gwen says, surprised.
   ‘But he never made contact.’
   ‘You may not be ashamed of being old, but he was.’
   ‘Hold on now. He didn't cause this? Angelo didn't cause the miracle?’ Gwen looks back at Olivia. She shook her head.
   ‘No, he lived this long through natural means. He kept his body at a temperature two degrees below normal. He controlled his caloric intake, kept his blood pressure below one ten.’
   ‘Does that work?’

   ‘Oh, yes. Prolonging life is simple. But no one's worked out how to make a profit at it, so it's not advertised.’
   ‘And the whole time he was looking for immortality?’
   ‘It's not as impossible as it sounds. You are not the only remarkable thing on this Earth, Jack. Consider the jellyfish. The species turritopsis nutricula is considered to be immortal. Its cells undergo a process called transdifferentiation. Quite simply, it can revert to a younger state, and grow old again. And then repeat without limit. It's possible there are individual jellyfish upon this planet that have existed for thousands and thousands of years.’
   ‘I'm not as special as I thought.’ Jack jokes.
   ‘You never were. Even within the human body, cancer cells are immortal. Stem cells, in theory they can divide forever. And this is the research that Angelo investigated. Well, they all did, because my grandfather wasn't alone.’
   ‘Who were the others?’
   ‘Well, the story says that it started with three men, each representing a different family. And when you were being murdered over and over again, these three men came to witness your resurrection.’
   ‘I saw them. They made a deal.’ Jack recalls the three men at the back of the butcher’s shop.
   ‘They formed an alliance to purchase the power of resurrection. And when you escaped, the three families swore that they'd find the gift again.’
   ‘What were their names?’
   ‘The Ablemarch family, the Costerdane family and the Frines.’
   ‘Ablemarch, Costerdane, Frines. Did you get that?’ Rex calls down the phone to Esther. She asks for the spelling of the names before feeding them into the search engine. Rex wants her to search back nine decades and find them immediately.

Gwen asks what happened to the three families after 1928. Olivia informs them that although they had lost Jack, they still had his blood. Jack realises that they hadn’t been draining him, they had been collecting it. But states that his blood isn’t anything special, as it wasn’t what made him immortal. Rex is curious as to why the three families want Jack dead, but just like him, Jack is drawing a blank.
Although Olivia has no clear idea either, whatever they were planning, they were keeping her grandfather out of the loop. They didn’t like that he was ‘inappropriate.’ When questioned on this, she tells Jack straight.
   ‘He loved a man. He did go on to have a family of his own, and I think he loved my grandmother very much, but he never lied about you, Jack. And I think that Ablemarch, Costerdane and Frines found that a little unfortunate. As a result, Angelo was forced to watch them from afar.’
Gwen glances around the room, commenting that he seemed to be well off.
   ‘Well, Jack told him enough to navigate his way through the twentieth century and make a profit.’
   ‘But what did these families do to the world? They started in Manhattan. Eighty years later, the whole of the planet becomes immortal.’ Gwen says.
   ‘And I become mortal.’
   ‘In 1998 we intercepted a message. It was just one word. Blessing.’ Olivia explains.
   ‘We've heard about The Blessing. They found it. Whatever The Blessing is, the three families found it.’ Jack replies.
   ‘And now it's time that we found them. Esther, you got any news for us?’ Rex calls back to Esther in the SUV.
   ‘This is plain weird. There's no one called Ablemarch or Costerdane or Frines. I mean, literally. There's no such names. There's nothing. It's blank. They don't exist.’ Esther feels the cold metal of the gun against her head. Friedkin puts his finger to his lips. As Rex calls for Esther, she ends transmission. Rex looks out of the window.
   ‘I think there’s trouble.’

Outside the main door of the building Friedkin questions Wilson a fellow CIA agent about Shapiro.
   ‘How long till Shapiro gets here?’
   ‘He was out of the airport right behind us. We got maybe five minutes till the rest of the CIA descends.’ Wilson replies.  
   ‘Five minutes should be enough. Bring her. We got to finish this before the rest of the CIA arrive.’

With only minutes if that to spare, Rex demands Olivia tell them where they can find the three families. While Jack and Gwen wonder why Rex is jumpy.
   ‘You’ll never find them, that’s the whole point. They came out of New York with the motivation of keeping this secret. Where’s the best place to hide yourself? In plain sight.’

Wilson screams for everyone to remain where they are, her weapon trained on everyone in the room. Friedkin enters brandishing his own weapon, announces that they’re the CIA. That they’re arresting everyone for violations of the Miracle Security Act.
   ‘This is the same as treason now, folks. And I want a word with Rex. Right now. Secure him.’ Friedkin instructs. Rex is cuffed and marched from the room.
Gwen glares over at the armed CIA, demands to know who the man with the gun is.
   ‘Brian Friedkin’ Esther informs her.
Rex informs them as he’s lead away, that if anyone was working for the Three Families, it would be Friedkin. Disgusted by this, Gwen tries to intervene, to prevent it. Jack, seeing that Gwen could become an instant Category One, steers her back to the group. Rex is lead away at gunpoint.
Olivia is curious as to how the CIA found them. Wilson informs her that Rex had made a phone call to the brother of Dr Vera Juarez, expressing his condolences. She informs her that they’d been tracking his phone ever since.

Cocksure Friedkin thinks he has his man, and up until this point, I too felt the game was up, although I thought a lot of things around about this point. Friedkin extends the hospitality of pressing the gun against Rex’s head in the same fashion as Rex had to Friedkin near the start of the story.   
   ‘I knew you'd make a mistake in the end. It's funny though. I never thought that sympathy would draw you out. But now all I've got to do is say you attacked me and then I pulled my gun. I wonder which spot is memories or personality. Here, please feel free to piss yourself.’

Shapiro and the REAL CIA arrive at the Colasanto ranch blocking the driveway with even more SUV’s. Shapiro is really irked that Friedkin is already here and not at all sure why, given he’s not a field agent. Baylor points out that Matheson was his division and that might account for it.
   ‘Yeah well, he should have waited for me, the fat ass.’

Gwen is confused as to why Rex would leave himself wide open to be tracked by the CIA, especially after he’d harped on about it for so long to everyone else, including quiet Esther.

In the next room, after Rex takes a few punches in the guts by Friedkin’s men, Rex demands to know how much the Three Families are paying Friedkin.
   ‘It wasn’t about the money.’

The computer screen in Angelo’s room sparks into life, picking up Friedkin’s face through the Torchwood software and the Eye-5’s.
   ‘You can’t escape them. The Family’s don’t just pay me. They own me.’
Wilson is shocked. Weapon trained still on the group in the room, she wonders who has switched on what she thinks is CCTV.
   ‘They are everywhere. They are always.’
   ‘What’s it doing?’ She says, frantically trying to understand.
   ‘They are no-one.’ Friedkin says to all in the room, unaware his actions are being televised.

   ‘And they are listening.Rex smiles. Friedkin is taken aback.
   ‘Oh, Friedkin, I’m so glad you mentioned money. That’s gonna transmit beautifully.’ He laughs.

   ‘What do you mean, transmit? Transmit from where? You’re not wearing a wire, we already checked.’
Gwen checks her pockets and smiles.
   ‘He stole them.’
   ‘Mr Shapiro, you’ve got a confession from Brian Friedkin, live on air.’ She says to Shapiro as he enters Angelo’s room with his team. Everyone stares at the screen. Torchwood are smiling.
   ‘You’re lying.’

Rex informs Friedkin that the game is up. Since his heart rate hit one hundred and twenty, the signal from the Eye 5 software was able to transmit to every monitor within a hundred feet of him. He explains to Friedkin that he had used his phone on purpose.
   ‘I was just waiting until Torchwood got enough information. But then, the Colasantos, they showed their hand. So I needed to get back inside, which meant laying a trap for you. It's over, Friedkin. It's over. And you're no killer.’
As Baylor demands that Friedkin show himself, Friedkin commends Rex on his skills. A little later, Friedkin is lead away in cuffs.
Rex, faces up to Shapiro later and questions him about whether he thought Rex were a traitor.
   ‘There was evidence, woven through your records going back ten years or more. Whoever these people are, they're a lot smarter than Friedkin. And they're operating on all sorts of different levels.’
 ‘Yeah, but now we've got them on the run.’
 ‘Maybe. So, let's start from the beginning. Exactly what is going on?’

There is something about Shapiro that I don’t like. There’s also something about his character that I do like. Perhaps it’s a personality thing. Shapiro dislikes people who talk over him. People that go against his wishes and demands. He has that same kind of arrogance that I disliked in Rex at first. Shapiro does ruffle a lot of feathers, none more so than with Gwen and Torchwood. Shapiro is one of the good guys, and you can see he carries a lot of weight (command wise), and perhaps that’s earned him the right to be a tad obnoxious at times, and blunt and to the point.

Before either Rex or Shapiro can continue with their catch up, Gwen interrupts them. She wants to know if Rex had planned the whole thing from the start, to eventually lead Friedkin to where they were, bringing in the CIA for the final conflict. Rex explains that he just improvised after the Colasanto people showed up. Still put out, she wished Rex had warned them.
Shapiro decides to do a round robin and turns his attention to Olivia Colasanto. Olivia herself is put out that the CIA invaded her house – twice.
   ‘The CIA does not have the authority to operate on American soil.’ She informs Shapiro. Shapiro orders her out of her own home.
   ‘Take her to the safe house. Tell her to line up her lawyers so I can piss on them long and hard.’ Shapiro turns his attention to the Torchwood duo.
   ‘So, these are the Torchwood clowns.’
   ‘Torchwood did more to piece this together than the entire CIA.’ Gwen snaps at him.
Shapiro takes a dislike to her. He identifies her as English, which puts Gwen’s nose completely out of joint, and the Celtic anger rises.
   ‘No. I’m not English and I’m not a girl.’
Esther introduces Shapiro to Gwen, but Gwen, as fiery as ever doesn’t care who he is, and is not scared of him either. Shapiro dislikes being spoken to by Gwen and wants her deported. Jack seeing this could escalate out of control, steps in.
   ‘Hey, hey, hey, leave her alone.’
   ‘Don't you dare.’

   ‘Don't touch her.’ Rex defends Gwen. ‘Sorry, sir. With all due respect, Gwen Cooper has proven herself to be extremely useful. I think it's worth keeping her on our side.’
   ‘Did you sleep with her?’ Shapiro asks, curiously.
   ‘Pardon me?’ Gwen replies, shocked.
   ‘No, sir, I did not.’
   ‘Because most women that bitter you've slept with. Did you make that mistake?’ Shapiro looks to Esther, who also hasn’t slept with Rex, but I’m thinking would probably have wanted to at some point.
Shapiro commends Esther on her field work, but then states he will dock her pay. Then his eyes rest on Jack Harkness, and his great coat.
   ‘And what is it with you, Red Baron? You got Snoopy up your ass?’
   ‘That's funny.’ Gwen laughs.
Jack finds Shapiro’s attitude distasteful. Rex was a pussycat in comparison. At this point in time, Jack wants to advance, find the Families, deal with the situation. Possibly put the world back to how it should be.
   ‘While you're wasting time, Mr Shapiro, we've got the names of the people who are responsible for causing the Miracle. I suggest we get to work.’
   ‘Torchwood is going to work for the CIA?’ Shapiro laughs.
Jack would prefer to deal with the Miracle without any CIA involvement, and he’d rather be calling the shots, than have them dictated by the CIA.
   ‘We’ve got a plane ready and waiting twenty minutes away. The sooner we pool our resources, the sooner we can end this thing. All right, let’s go. Everybody out.’
     Jack looks down at Angelo. He can’t be moved. Shapiro states the obvious, that nobody dies, and there was a nurse somewhere still in the building. He instructs Jack to say his goodbye’s and instructs his guards to keep an eye on them. As Shapiro and his team bar one, leave, Gwen turns to look at Jack.
   ‘Jack, did we just join the CIA?’
   ‘I think we did.’ Jack replies, with a grin.

Shapiro instructs that Friedkin be taken to the airport and put in cargo. In the SUV, while Friedkin, Olivia Colasanto and Wilson sit waiting, Friedkin knows he will never see his family again. He will always be remembered for the moment now, and not the good that he felt he did for the Family. Reaching into his sleeve, he pulls a cord that detonates a bomb strapped inside his coat sleeve. It blows the SUV into the air, killing everyone on board.

Inside the building, they feel the tremor of the explosion and hurry out to see the fiery inferno. With nobody but the Torchwood team for information and a dying man in a bed, all they can do is sit tight. Jack returns to Angelo’s room, and pulls up a stool beside the bed.
   ‘More bloodshed.’ He tells the unconscious Angelo. ‘All these years later and my life hasn't changed. I can't believe you were watching me. Maybe you said hello. Some old man asking me directions and I just looked right through you. Did you see him? Did you see Ianto? You'd have liked him. Or maybe not. You'd have been jealous.’ Jack laughs. He looks down at Angelo. ‘Got to go. Work to do. I'll take care of you. I promise.’
   ‘I could travel this whole wide world but where would I find another man like you?’
Jack lifts the oxygen mask from Angelo’s face.
   ‘See you later, old man.’ He kisses him. At that moment, the monitors bleep. Jack looks at them. All the vital signs are shutting down.
   ‘What's the point of that? He's sick, I know. Tell me something new. Shut up! You want to tell whoever made this stuff dying's not quite the same anymore? Oh, how do I?’ He pulls the plug on the machine, stops the bleeping, the screens go blank.
   ‘That’s better. Kind of cruel though.’ He waves the lead at Angelo with a wicked grin. ‘Angelo.’ Setting the cable down he explains that with the Miracle, people go on living now. He takes hold of Angelo’s hand.
   ‘Like I said, I’ve got to go.’ As he holds Angelo’s hand, he’s surprised to find that there is no pulse – at all.

   ‘No way.’ He scans Angelo’s body using his VM. ‘That’s impossible.’ He climbs on the bed and begins CPR.
   ‘How the hell did you do this?’ He says, plugging in the machine. He yells for anyone to hear him. ‘I’VE GOT A MAN DYING HERE. DO YOU HEAR ME? SOMEONE’S DYING!’
     Gwen hurries into the room. She doesn’t believe that Angelo is dead, even though the output is showing it to be so. Shapiro orders everyone away from the bed. Baylor orders those with any medical expertise to assess the situation.
   ‘This man is either dying or dead.’
   ‘He can’t be dead Jack. He just can’t be. That’s impossible. Nobody can die. He’s just Category One.’
     Jack explains to Esther that he scanned the body.
   ‘He’s gone.’
Rex panics. If the Miracle has reversed, does that mean, that he too will die, as nature would have intended?
Jack can take no more and as if to state the obvious, shouts clearly for all to hear.
   ‘HE’S DEAD.’

The bed and body are removed from the bed, so that only the metal frame and mattress remain. Jack, Gwen and Shapiro remain in the room long after everyone has left.
   ‘How? Only him, no one else. The only man in the whole wide world to die. The Miracle continues minus Mr Colasanto. So how did he do it? We’ve taken the body for autopsy, any idea what we’re gonna find?’ Shapiro asks Jack. Jack has no answers but insists that he and Gwen should leave.
Shapiro is adamant that everyone should remain at the ranch.
   ‘It’s not a crime scene.’ Jack retorts.
   ‘Are you sure about that? Dying of old age can now be considered a crime. Something happened here, and we are going to search this place for every last bit of information. And nobody is going to leave until we know exactly what happened. So you can stay just where you are, Captain.’
As Shapiro leaves, Jack sits resignedly on the bed, his back to Gwen. Gwen feels bad. She too can’t work out why one man died amidst the undead. She tries to encourage Jack into talking, but one word answers is all she’s getting from him.
   ‘Are we in trouble?’ She asks.
   ‘We’re in trouble because he died?’
   ‘Yeah.’ Jack confirms.
   ‘But why?’

In the now CIA Watch Analyst’s office, that used to be Colasanto’s study, Rex and Esther are talking via webcam to Charlotte and Noah back at Headquarters. Charlotte informs them both that only Colasanto has died, but are keeping that news under wraps in case it starts a riot.
Charlotte informs them that Greece and Ireland have been declared bankrupt, and Spain is going under.
   ‘They’re taking the whole European Union down with them.’ She says.
Rex suggests they focus on the three families, Costerdane, Ablemarch and Frines. Esther chips in that she’d already run a check and none of the names cropped up in any search engine.
Esther can’t understand how three names can disappear from records without leaving a paper trail. Charlotte informs her that after World War Two, all the Hitler names disappeared from the phone books. There were absolutely no traces of the name anywhere. If someone wants to disappear, it’s not difficult. If they erase passport records, birth certificates, and do that for a decade, it soon gets buried in the fabric of the world.

Excitedly, Charlotte can’t wait to get her teeth into the new assignment. She talks with Esther while Rex wishes to discuss something separate with Noah on another laptop.
Charlotte relays information to Esther about her sister, now in a psyche ward, in a top security unit. Esther is fearful. Charlotte has pulled some strings for her, using her CIA credentials to get her sister extra care. Esther is grateful.
Shapiro makes an appearance and hopes Esther isn’t making a personal call. Charlotte acknowledges this by mentioning that she’s sent flowers to his wife on his behalf.
Rex instructs Noah to hit Phicorp with an official disclosure, and to keep an eye on Oswald Danes. He’s concerned that Jack might be onto something, as the Three Families may also be keeping an eye on Danes.
Noah tells him that he’s being monitored but not on close surveillance. Noah checks his screen and informs Rex that he’s sold out Cowboy Stadium, in Dallas. He’s preaching hellfire and salvation, which makes Danes the most popular man in the world, as they speak.

Danes and Kitzinger step out of the hotel lift in Dallas, Texas. Jilly explains what she is trying to organise for him as they walk towards his hotel room.
   ‘First I'm trying to set up a joint appearance for you with Madison Weakly. She's the bisected bride. You know, car accident sheared off everything below the bikini line. Got married a week later propped up on a box. Basically, she's made up of positive thinking and colostomy bags. Anyway, they were thinking you and she could share the spotlight, if they could manage a two-shot, obviously.’

Danes isn’t really listening. As they enter the room, he makes a bee line for the radio and turns it up loud, drowning out her speech about interviews she has for him about fixing the economy. A part of me thinks at this point, that Danes had other ideas, that now he had people eating out of the palm of his hand, he didn’t really need Kitzinger giving him essays on speeches – he’d much rather do his own thing. Eventually, she can’t compete with the radio and asks him wearily to turn it down. He switches it off.
   ‘Get me a girl.’ He tells her.
   ‘How old?’
   ‘Legal age.’ He replies.
   ‘Seriously?’ Kitzinger stares at him.
   ‘I’ve made a new life for myself.’ He tells her. ‘A new chance with new tastes. So I want a woman. Now get me one. A redhead.’
He turns on the music and Dad dances. Kitzinger leaves the room muttering, and bumps into a slight Asian woman in the corridor, knocking all her papers from out of her hand. The woman helps gather up her paperwork and offers herself up as her PA, knowing who Kitzinger is. Kitzinger struggles with her key card for her room – it opens after the third attempt.
In her hotel room, Shawnie introduces herself, and explains that she’s on an internship from Harrigan Knights PR. Kitzinger considers her offer of help, and instructs her to get her a sandwich
   ‘Tomato and Swiss on sourdough. Then find me a prostitute.’ Surprised for a moment, Shawnie stares.
   ‘Start with the sandwich.’ Kitzinger replies wearily.

On her way to get the sandwich, Shawnie texts her employers, with news. Noah picks up the message at the CIA/Analysts office.
   ‘Danes and Kitzinger. Shawnie’s in.’

It’s late in the evening and Esther makes a call to the psychiatric hospital and speaks to her sister. It seems at first that all is relatively alright, she talks of all the things she plans to do when her sister is released. Sarah surprises her with the news that she wants to volunteer. Curiously, Esther asks, for what, and is surprised further, and saddened, that Sarah wants to be a Category One, and not only that, but has signed up her daughters too.
   ‘Sometimes I wonder what keeps us from falling straight through the Earth to the other side of the world.’

Tearful, Esther carries a box of files through to the Colasanto study and prepares herself a mammoth task. Shapiro and Rex seem concerned for her current wellbeing, but Esther needs to fill her hours with something to take her mind off her sister. If they find what causes the Miracle, perhaps, just perhaps, she can help her sister.

Back in Swansea, Rhys and Gwen talk, while back at the ranch, Gwen sits in the room staring at the back of Jack Harkness, while he quietly broods.
   ‘I can't tell you. I don't trust the phones these days. And we've got these family people everywhere. And Jack's just as bad. Honestly, you should see him right now, Rhys. He's sulking.‘
   ‘Why? What's he doing now? Oh, don't tell me. Did he get another bruise?’
   ‘Who's that?’ Mary enquires.
   ‘Jack, her boss.’
   ‘Well, you tell her for me I had a gun held to my head. My life was in danger, and her father's right inside our own house. And all because of her. So, you tell her, don't give up. Go get the bastards, whatever it takes.’
   ‘Tell her yourself.’
   ‘No. I'm watching TV.’
   ‘So, what about Jack, then?’
   ‘Oh, he's doing that old thing, keeping secrets. Won't tell me. Will you? Hmm? God knows what's going on. What time is it there?’
   ‘Ah, it's almost eight. The telly's been on all night. They said there's gonna be a run on the banks. Like a Lehman Brothers' thing.’
   ‘It's the pensions.’
   ‘Aye, the pension funds go bankrupt because of the Miracle, and that sets off a domino effect because everything's been on a knife edge since 2008. They said the best advice is to invest in gold. There we are, we'll be fine. Thank God for my vast reserves, eh?’
   ‘Huh. How's Dad?’ Rhys puts the phone to his chest and looks to Mary.
   ‘She's asking how Dad is.’
   ‘Tell her the truth.’ Mary tells him.
   ‘Not so good, Gwen.’
   ‘Is he conscious?’
   ‘Not so much, no. The trouble is, we can't get a doctor in because they'll classify him Category One, and them ovens are still sitting there. They're only closed because of the protests. And they said on the news if we get a recession, then it's classic isolation policy. Given our lack of resources, the camps will open up again.’
   ‘Like someone planned it.’
   ‘Yeah. But does that include 2008 as well? I mean, you know, was that part of the plan? You know, a first stage?’
   ‘Could be. I think we've been manipulated for decades.’
   ‘Yeah, but what for? I mean, where's it all heading?’
   ‘I don't know. It's not like the old days of Torchwood. I mean, we knew what we were fighting there. But this? This is like the whole world is changing and we're just so tiny.’
   ‘God, I wish you'd come home. ‘
   ‘Not yet, sweetheart. But soon. Soon.’

Gwen ends the phone call. Esther enters and is bemused by the raised area around the bed. She taps it with her foot. Jack is curious.
   ‘What are you doing?’
   ‘You seen this? Maybe it’s the floor.’ When Jack doesn’t understand, she continues. ‘Well, we’re going through evidence like Angelo’s body did something. But the only strange thing with this room is the floor. I knew something was bugging me. Look, the bed’s on a sort of platform.’
Jack asks Esther to leave it, but like a dog with a bone, she’s not prepared to drop it. When Shapiro enters, smoking a cigarette and lamenting on the fact he could smoke his lungs to death yet still not die, he realises something has been discussed that he wasn’t party to, and presses them to talk.
Esther, despite deep glaring from Jack, breaks her silence and remarks about the flooring.

The bed is removed and the floor is cut free revealing an intricate pattern of alien technology beneath. Shapiro orders everyone from the room before turning to Jack to ask what it is. Jack refuses to tell him, feigning that he has no clue. Esther knows he’s holding back and begs him to tell them. Gwen, aware that whatever it is, is alien, knows Jack would want to keep as much of that as secret as possible and defends him at every turn. Shapiro orders that Gwen be removed, even deported, to separate the pair of them. Announcing that Torchwood is now defunct.
Despite Jack’s protestations regarding Gwen, Baylor takes her away. Still Jack refuses to tell them, until Shapiro announces he will have the item lifted and taken back for analysis.
   ‘You can’t. I’m sorry, OK. You can’t touch it.’ Jack says.
   ‘Jack, come on. What the hell is it?’ Rex demands.
   ‘Some sort of transmitter.’ Jack explains in layman’s terms. ‘Well it mostly proves my theory that immortality is caused by some kind of morphic field.’ He stares at Rex.
   ‘Wait a minute. You know what’s causing the Miracle?’ Shapiro asks.
   ‘No. Saying it’s a morphic field is as vague as saying it’s radiation. I still don’t know how, where or what is creating it.’
   ‘So, it transmits what, some sort of field that cancels out the first one, so Angelo could die?’ Esther says.
   ‘And where did he get it?’ Rex asks.
   ‘I don't know everything.’
   ‘How big is this field? The whole house?’ Shapiro enquires.
   ‘Smaller. About the size of that panel.’
   ‘So, we would be able to stop the Miracle if we could create a field as big as what, the whole planet?’
   ‘No, you need a structure like this panel as big as the whole planet.’ Jack replies.
   ‘Well, I'm sure we'll be able to replicate its effects.’
   ‘Don't touch it. Seriously. That's a proper null field. You change the dynamic and it could nullify everything, even life.’ Jack is adamant it cannot be touched.
   ‘Well then, you need to make it safe.’
   ‘I am not an expert.’
   ‘You're the closest thing we've got. Now make it safe. And then we're gonna take this thing back to Langley.’

Danes gets his redhead. A young prostitute stands outside his door, less than enthusiastic to enter the room of a convicted paedophile and murderer. She asks him what he would prefer, noting that she has packed a schoolgirl’s outfit if he would prefer her in that. Danes tells her that he would rather just talk, have dinner, a drink. Claire, the prostitute, decides that it’s not what she wants to do after Danes yells at her for laughing at his idea of a ‘date’. As she hurriedly leaves, she tells him that he’s running out of time, and that she’d heard that there was a new Category for people like him. As Claire hurries out, Danes heads to Kitzinger’s room, pushing past her after she opens the door.
   ‘What’s Category Zero?’
After much questioning, Kitzinger tells him.
   ‘Look, Oswald, did you really think it would never come to an end, your freedom? There's an emergency mandate being passed through Congress defining a new Category Zero, meaning people who have earned themselves a place in the ovens for moral reasons.’
   ‘They want to burn me alive?’
   ‘Oswald, you were always sentenced to death. What you had was a wonderful delay. And now it's time for that adventure to come to an end.’
   ‘But, people love me.’ Danes is extremely shocked.
   ‘Television loves you. It's a different thing.’
   ‘They can't kill me. Not yet. I haven't found them.’ At this stage we’re unaware of what Danes means, but we find this out in the next episode.
   ‘Haven't found who?’
   ‘How long have you known about this? How long have you known? How long have you known about this?’
Danes deals her a hefty smack in the mouth, knocking her off her feet. She attacks him and he hits her hard again. Feisty as they come however, Kitzinger doesn’t hold back as Oswald lifts the laptop and quickly leaves the hotel.

   ‘I'll have you arrested for this. Brand new charges! They're going to reopen those ovens and you're going in! You run, Oswald! Run as fast as you can! You've got the most famous face on the planet. Where are you gonna hide? Where are you gonna go, Oswald? What are you gonna do?’ Kitzinger yells, bloody mouth, chasing him out into the corridor, unaware that he’s taken her laptop.

Back in Angelo’s room, Jack scans the alien tech with his VM. He calls Esther over, and Rex. He needs them to hold the pattern blocks in place. Kneeling down on the ground either side of Jack, both agents comply. Jack insists they place their hands on the panels where he indicates. Once done, he talks to them, without making eye contact, but staring forward or at the panels in front of him, alternating his hands and panels for those outside of the field. Jack explains to them both what he needs from them.
    ‘Listen to me quickly. I've broadened the transmission so it's nullifying sound waves. No one outside the field can hear us. So, make yourself look busy, just stay where you are and no one can hear what we're saying.’
Of course, Rex finds this hard to believe and to prove the point, calls to the guy at the desk – who can’t hear him. Jack isn’t impressed.
   ‘It’s a null field.’
Again, Rex finds it hard to believe and steps away from the field after asking Esther to count to one hundred. She does so, but he can’t hear her. Kneeling back down and entering the field, he still can’t believe it.

   ‘Holy shit, this is insane.’
   ‘They can still see us. Keep your heads down facing away like you’re concentrating, OK?’ Jack insists.
Esther is curious as to how it works but Jack refuses to tell her. All he can tell her is that the only examples were in the Torchwood Hub, buried in the ruins. Angelo’s people had obviously been watching, and had salvaged it, knowing that the Miracle would come, and there would be a need for it.
Whatever Angelo’s reasons were for taking it, the only course of action Jack could see for either of them now, was for Rex and Esther to get the pair of them (Jack and the panel) out of Colasanto’s ranch and as far away as possible.
Rex refuses.
Jack looks at Rex.
   ‘There's a reason why Torchwood was secret. We kept things hidden from the human race. This technology is a science the world should never know.’
   ‘How can you know that?’ Esther asks.
   ‘I know, Esther, because I've seen the future. I've walked the future world and breathed its air. And this technology would send it to damnation. Just imagine the stealth technology of a null field hiding bombs, hiding planes, shielding one side from radiation while the other side burns. This thing would be the end of us. This timeline would be terminal.’
   ‘He’s right.’ Esther says. Rex is less convinced.
   ‘Whose side are you on?’
   ‘Even if the government. Even if the government had this one panel and they put people inside and they died, it's the same thing as the ovens. It's control over life and death, and we've seen that that doesn't work.’ Esther explains.  
   ‘But you trust me, don't you? Both of you? After all we've done? Please, I'm begging you, get me out of here. Look, this is the Alpha plate. Without it this is just a bunch of metal. You've got to get me and the plate away from this house.’
    ‘Jack, listen to me. We can't, okay? We are the CIA and this is a genuine CIA operation.’
    ‘This is history, Rex. This is everything. Please, get me out.’ Jack pleads as Rex steps away from the null field.

In the Dallas hotel corridor, Shawnie walks with Kitzinger towards the lift. Shawnie suggests Jilly call the police on Danes but Kitzinger plans to launch a press conference, and with Danes out there, his old habits coming to the fore, it won’t be long before there’s a witch hunt.
A smart dressed suit steps from the lift. Jilly informs Shawnie to wait in the lift so she can talk to the man, who informs her that she’s being watched by a CIA field agent. Jilly finds it laughable, until the blue-eyed man shoots and kills Shawnie in the lift. Stunned by his actions, it takes Kitzinger some time to comprehend the second bit of information he offers her.
   ‘I need you to focus, Miss Kitzinger. How would you react to a promotion?’
   ‘With Phicorp?’
   ‘Oh, we’re way above Phicorp.’
Jilly accepts his offer.
Noah brings through a few thick books of data from Catholic churches, and sets them down between him and Charlotte. There’s a lot of registers to go through.

Rex comes back into the study with news that Shapiro wants to see Baylor out by the forensic vehicle. He insists he take his coat. As Baylor goes to fetch it, Rex knocks him out with the butt of his gun. Still feeling bad about his decision to help Jack escape, he leads Jack out into the courtyard, spinning out a yarn that Jack knocked him out, held them at gunpoint, stole a car. It all made perfect sense. Jack is however a little concerned that neither field agent is travelling with him.
   ‘You’re not coming with me?’
   ‘We can’t. That's why we've got to keep our faces out of this. I'm sorry, Jack, but the CIA has a chance of solving this thing now, and they need me and Esther. We can help.’

As they enter the courtyard, Rex informs Jack that there will be a guard on the gate.
   ‘I’ll inform him that Shapiro authorised a car.’ He tells Jack to keep his head down and go. Esther tells him all the cars are the same and just to chirp the keys which will unlock one of them. He does that, alerting a guard who calls for him to stop. When Jack doesn’t, the guard opens fire, shooting Jack in the stomach. He drops like a stone.
Rex deals with the guard as Esther encourages Jack up, with the help of Rex. Bundling him in the back of the car, it’s down to Esther to leave with Jack, now that she too has been identified. Rex wipes Jack’s blood on his shirt, and instructs them to go.

It’s daylight, the sun is burning over the horizon, the radio is bidding America good morning, and Jack is dying in the back seat. Esther is distraught. She has no idea how to fix this. High above them in a plane bound for the UK, Gwen stares ahead of her, tears falling down her cheeks.
   ‘Oh, my God, I don't, I don't know where to go. Jack, please. Please say something. Oh my God, I don't know what to do. Jack. Oh, my God. I don't know what to do.’ 

It’s the 9th episode next month – we’re closer to the end of Miracle Day. Will Jack survive, will Esther get her act together. Will Gwen ever return to the US of A? These and many more questions will be answered in April.

(Like you haven’t got the box set already!!!)

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