"Before the Flood"
Written by Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec; directed by Lawrence Trilling

Sydney, Jack, Vaughn, Nadia, and Irina jump out of the plane and into the red-ball-covered Sevogda (see “Search and Rescue”). Jack contacts Marshall and Weiss back at APO to tell them that they’re still waiting for the DSR team that’s supposed to be there. Weiss tells him that they have about two hours to disarm the Mueller device. While Sydney picks up a signal from the DSR team, Marshall tells Weiss that he might be able to hack into the satellite system the Russians use in order to stop their bombing of the city. Elena learns that everything is on schedule and tells Sloane that he’ll see Nadia soon. Vaughn and the Bristows find the DSR vehicle, which has been abandoned, then Brodien (see “Authorized Personnel Only, Part 1”), the only member of the team who’s still alive. He hands out machine guns, warning that tranquilizers won’t work on the now-crazy citizens. There’s no cure, so once someone is infected, that person has to be eliminated. Brodien has identified the epicenter of the Mueller device, the Oransky building, so Irina announces that they need to get to the roof in order to disarm the ball. The roads are all closed, but Sydney thinks they can maneuver via the subway system. As they all head off to do so, one of Elena’s accomplices alerts her to their presence. Elena is confident that they won’t make any difference, but Sloane wants to lead an assault team to stop them. Elena tells him to bring Nadia back, in case they can get her to join them.

At APO, Marshall learns that he needs an access code to proceed, but only Russian military officials have them. Weiss encourages him to think like Jack, which leads Marshall to consider blackmail. They dig into the Blackwell Index (see “The Index”) and look up information on the Deputy of Defense, Minister Karkov. Weiss tells Jack that they’re working on getting the access code as the team moves towards the Oransky building. Irina tells Jack that Russians like to control their own fate; Jack says that he never put much faith in destiny either. Irina spots a white horse that appears red because of the Mueller device. She reports that part of Rambaldi’s prophecy says, “When blood-red horses run through the streets and angels fall from the sky, the Chosen One and the Passenger will clash. And only one of them will survive.” Jack notes that she’s “really through the looking glass,” but Irina has the feeling that either Sydney or Nadia will die. The team reaches a subway station, but Brodien is stabbed by an infected person and dies. Vaughn and the Bristows start working on the subway and Irina tells Vaughn that he shouldn’t wait to be with Sydney. He doesn’t really want her advice, since she killed his father, but she tells him that some secrets are acceptable: “You’re not as covert as you like to think. Consider my life an object lesson. If you don’t want to end up like Jack and me, tell Sydney the truth.”

Sydney and Nadia are still feeling like something bad is going to happen, but Sydney attempts to lighten the mood by telling Nadia that Vaughn proposed. She promises that she’s not one of those brides who wants to kill her maid of honor. At APO, Weiss gets in touch with Karkov (speaking bad Russian) and asks for his code. The minister isn’t forthcoming at first, but Weiss manages to blackmail him successfully. In Russia, Jack answers a man’s cell phone and has to tell the caller that he’s dead. Marshall hacks into the satellite but sees that someone, probably Elena, is trying to broadcast something encrypted to the Russians. Vaughn and the Bristows prepare to set off on the train, but Nadia is still in the tunnel when a mob of infected people (what the heck, let’s say zombies) approaches. The train has already started and Nadia is unable to reach it before she’s attacked by the mob. Sloane arrives with an assault team, which he quickly kills. He tells Vaughn and the Bristows that Elena sent the team to kill them, but he wants to help stop her. He claims that he only worked with her to try to end her plan, but because of her security, he hasn’t had time. He announces that Elena’s hideout is in the basement of the Oransky building, but before he can completely take charge, Jack knocks him out and tells him he’s not the boss anymore. Weiss and Marshall alert the team to Elena’s broadcast, reporting that she’s trying to send out a frequency used by the Mueller device so she can cause chaos anywhere in the world the water has been primed.

With 40 minutes left before the Russian air strikes, the agents rush around, trying to figure out what to do. Jack informs Sloane that if he doesn’t help them get to the roof of the Oransky building, he’s dead. Sloane tells him it’s not a problem. Once the Mueller device is disarmed, the toxins will dissipate and whoever does the disarming will be killed. Irina is sure that she can reverse the ionization, but Sloane says that Elena changed the wiring system. Irina tells him to take her to Elena instead. Nadia fights off the zombies and makes it to the street, where she sees an angel statue that has fallen off of a building. She finds a man who claims to need help and he tells her that he knows who she is. She’s taken to Elena’s hideout, where Elena tells her that she always thought of her as her daughter. She gives Nadia the choice to join her and accept the life ahead of her. Nadia says that her future is killing Elena; she accuses her of wanting her on her side because she thinks Nadia can stop Sydney. She says that Sydney is her sister but Elena is nothing to her. As Nadia vows never to betray her sister, Elena injects her with tap water, right in the middle of her Rambaldi symbol brand (see “Echoes”). Sydney heads to the roof, where Irina will relay wiring instructions to her so she can disarm the device. Vaughn wants to come with her, thinking that she’ll run from the water in the ball faster if he’s chasing her. (He seems to have forgotten that he couldn’t outrun it the first time. She sends him back inside, telling him that if they do survive, she wants to marry him. He gives her the ring and they kiss.

At APO, Marshall and Weiss keep working on trying to stop the air strike, noting that they haven’t been evacuated like all the important people. Marshall calls Carrie to tell her that he loves her. Elena watches footage of Sloane, Vaughn, Jack, and Irina arriving at her hideout, then sees them in person. Irina tells Elena that she’s wanted to do something to her since she was 11, then punches her. On the roof, Sydney encounters Nadia, who’s become a zombie and doesn’t want to let Sydney get near the Mueller device. Jack tells Sydney that she’ll have to eliminate her. Instead, the sisters fight. Downstairs, the others try to shut down the device while Elena brags that she’s accounted for every possibility. After realizing that they don’t know where Sloane is, Irina sends Vaughn to the roof, where Sydney and Nadia are still fighting. Sydney finally knocks Nadia out and continues to work on the wiring. Irina guides Sydney to the coil (see “Nightingale”), but she sees that the colored wires have been changed. Irina tries to get Elena to tell her which one needs to be cut, but Elena isn’t in a giving mood. She thinks she can withstand whatever torture Irina has planned for her. Irina, however, is going to let Jack do the honors. Jack is actually hoping that Elena doesn’t cooperate, and he has a syringe of tap water ready and waiting. Elena tells Irina that Sydney needs to cut the white wire. Irina shoots her and tells Sydney to cut the blue one. Sydney is dealing with Nadia again, though, at least until Sloane shoots Nadia to allow Sydney to finish up.

Vaughn grabs Nadia (who’s still alive), and after Sydney cuts the wire, she, Vaughn, and Sloane make a run for it. The ball explodes, releasing water, and the four agents meet up with Jack and Irina downstairs. As Weiss and Marshall wonder what happened, Jack tells Irina to head for the border. She kisses him goodbye and tells Sydney to take care of her sister. She adds that Sydney might not see her on her wedding day, but she’ll see Sydney. Back in L.A., Sydney visits Sloane in his prison cell and tells him that Nadia is under sedation until a cure is found. However, Sloane is responsible for the deaths of everyone in Sevogda. Sydney promises that they’ll find a cure and tells him she believes he was trying to do the right thing. Some time later, Sydney and Vaughn take a drive in Santa Barbara, discussing their wedding (or possible elopement). They tell each other they love each other, and Vaughn decides that it’s time to take Irina’s advice. He tells Sydney that he doesn’t want to have secrets and she jokes that she just doesn’t want him to tell her that he’s a bad guy. “I guess that depends on who you ask,” he replies. Vaughn explains that his secret is from a long time ago, from before they even met. Actually, it’s the reason they met - there’s a reason that Sydney met with Vaughn when she first came to the CIA (see “Truth Be Told”). Sydney doesn’t understand what he’s trying to tell her. “Well, for starters,” he says, “my name isn’t Michael Vaughn.” Before Sydney can respond, another car slams into them.

R.I.P. (OR SO WE THINK): Elena

MEMORABLE QUOTES: Weiss: “What would Jack do in this situation? Jack is the king of this sort of thing.”
Marshall: “Well, first he’d probably glower a bit, right?”

Weiss: (in Russian) “We are needing your code of Milsat network.”
Karkov: “Whoever this is, your Russian is awful.”
Marshall: “I wrote this program in five minutes, you perv.”
Weiss: “I’m gonna make this real simple for you. We need your Milsat access codes. Either give it to us now, or every major news organization will get the Tuva photos by morning.”
Karkov: “A, I don’t know what you’re talking about. B, I’m running a trace on this call.”
Weiss: “Great. I look forward to meeting you. While I’ve got you on the line, let me ask you - what’s the significance of the green balloons?”
Karkov: “Alpha 572811 black. Now let me be clear. If those photos ever--.”
Weiss: “Oh, sure thing, Minister. Or should I call you Cowboy?”

“I just wanted to tell you I love you. I don’t get to tell you that often enough. (pause) No, I haven’t been drinking.” - Marshall to Carrie

Irina: “I’m not gonna torture you. I’m gonna let him do it. And he really doesn’t care for you. Especially after you tricked him into killing me. One thing you should know about Jack, he hates being anybody’s puppet.”
Jack: “I’m actually hoping you don’t tell us what we need to know. There’s a 50-50 chance Sydney cuts the right wire. I’m willing to take those odds if it means I can stand here and watch you turn into an animal.”
Elena: “You’re not a gambling man, Jack.”
Jack: “I didn’t used to be, but it’s been a rather interesting year for me. It’s made me reevaluate certain parts of my life. I’m trying to have more fun these days.”

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