"The Index"
Written by Alison Schapker; directed by J.R. Orci and Lawrence Trilling

At APO, Sydney is surprised to see Vaughn talking to Sloane in his office. Weiss tells her that Nadia doesn’t want to celebrate her upcoming birthday; he and Sydney brainstorm things they could all do. In a briefing, Sloane announces that the CIA has received possession of something called the Blackwell Index, which is basically a list of information created by a man named Damien Blackwell to blackmail powerful people. It’s encoded on a mobile terminal and the Alliance, its previous possessor, was never able to read it and the CIA has been unable to decrypt it. Unfortunately, the Index has recently disappeared from the CIA’s research station in Sarajevo. The disk, which was in Blackwell’s base of operations, was taken by French authorities, though they’re not aware of what they have. This means Sydney will have to get arrested in France so she can steal the disk. After the meeting, Dixon sneaks a look at Sloane’s phone log, finding a call made to a hotel in Sarajevo. Vaughn tells Sydney that Sloane is allowing him to take a couple of days off because his uncle had a stroke and is still unconscious in a hospital. Dixon asks to speak to Sydney, so they meet up at the good old self-storage facility. He reveals that less than an hour after the Index was stolen, and before Langley even knew about it, Sloane made contact with a former Alliance member named Miles Devereaux. He knows this because he has a tap on Sloane’s home phone. Dixon suspects that Sloane wants them to steal the decoder so he and Devereaux can read the Index and blackmail people.

Dixon takes his information to Chase (see “Authorized Personnel Only, Part 1”), who isn’t exactly pleased that he tapped Sloane’s phone, even if that means he can keep an eye (or ear) on him. She tells him that he has no proof to back up his allegations and should probably pull the tap. Back at APO, Sydney tells Dixon that she agrees with Chase about letting this go. Dixon thinks Chase is blind to the truth and asks Sydney to help him. Vaughn visits his uncle David in Arizona, where a nurse named Rosemary mistakes him for his father. She says that before his stroke, David said that Bill was coming to see him. At APO, Sloane criticizes a report Weiss wrote, which annoys him. Weiss says that he filled Nadia in on the details the previous night, then quickly backtracks to make sure Sloane knows they were working late. Sloane then asks Jack if he knows where Sydney is, since she was supposed to hand in a report. Sydney is back at the self-storage facility with Dixon to show him a micro CD burner that they can use to make Sloane a corrupted copy of the decoder disk. If Sloane hands it over to the CIA, as he’s supposed to, there won’t be a problem, but if he tries to use it himself, he won’t get anywhere. Dixon notes that Sydney’s life as a double agent must have been very difficult. Sydney says that for Nadia’s sake, she hopes they’re wrong about Sloane. In France, Sydney spray paints Weiss’ car in order to get herself arrested. Dixon poses as her attorney at the police station and Nadia hacks into the camera feeds. Dixon knocks out a guard and Sydney makes a corrupted copy of the disk in a place where Nadia can’t see her.

Back at APO, Sydney tells Dixon that Sloane is actually following protocol. He replies that Sloane has made a bunch of calls from his house since they got back from France, many to Brussels. He thinks that if they can get into Sloane’s house and copy the encryption key from his phone, they can get access to the conversations. Sloane summons Sydney to his office to chastise her for taking too long to get the disk at the police station. She claims that the disk was misfiled, but he points out that Nadia and Weiss lost visual contact with her. He seems suspicious that she didn’t find the disk until she was out of the sight of the camera. Sydney sees a chance and brings up Nadia’s birthday, suggesting that Sloane have a gathering at his house to celebrate. In Arizona, Rosemary gives Vaughn an envelope David said was for Bill; it contains a key to a locker. At home, Sydney and Nadia get ready for dinner and Nadia says that she’s glad Sydney is willing to spend the evening with Sloane for her. At dinner, Weiss brings up the Paris mission and asks “Arvin” what he thinks about hybrid cars. Sloane toasts Nadia, gushing about how proud he is to have her in his life. Much like in “Page 47,” Sydney gets a call from Dixon and pretends he’s Vaughn so she can leave the table. While she’s transmitting the key from the phone, Nadia catches her but doesn’t say anything about what she’s doing. Later, she blows out her candles and says that it’s nice to see her family for the people they really are. Back at home, Nadia blasts Sydney for using her to get to Sloane. When Dixon arrives, she demands to know what he’s uncovered.

At a bus station, Vaughn uses the key to open a locker, where he finds his father’s journal, which contains entries through 1981 - though Bill supposedly died in the ‘70s. Dixon takes his findings from Sloane’s phone to Chase, playing a conversation between Sloane and Devereaux about a meeting in Brussels. Chase is surprised that Dixon has involved Nadia, but Dixon says that she’s prepared to accept whatever the truth may be. At APO, Sloane mentions to Nadia that he detected some tension between her and Sydney. She covers and learns that he’s taking a trip to Brussels. Dixon, Sydney, Nadia, and Chase all head over there as Nadia wonders if Sydney would work this hard to punish Jack if he were doing what Sloane is doing. They track him to a building, where he appears to meet up with Devereaux and a group of Alliance members who are waiting to see the Index. However, Sloane is alone and it’s actually Jack who has the Index. Sloane explains to Chase that he had to bait the Alliance members out into the open so they could identify them. Sydney blasts him for making Jack do his dirty work, but Sloane tells her that he wanted to go - he didn’t trust Sloane with the Index but he knew the Alliance members would know he worked for Sloane. Sydney realizes that Jack doesn’t have the real Index just as the Alliance members realize the same. Nadia manages to save Jack before Devereaux can do anything to him. Afterwards, Sydney thanks Nadia, who replies, “I’d like to think in the future you’ll do the same for me.” In Arizona, an already confused Vaughn learns that Rosemary doesn’t really work at the hospital. Chase tells Dixon that she won’t pursue disciplinary action; they may or may not be flirting. Meanwhile, Sloane calls Jack from his house to tell him that the Index, which he can now read, contains everything they need and more.

MEMORABLE QUOTES: Sloane: “I take it you’ll have no problem bringing Nadia up to speed?”
Weiss: “Yeah, I already did. Last night.”
Sloane: “Excuse me?”
Weiss: “Uh, we were working. We work late. We actually like it. There were other peop - Jack was here!”
Sloane: “Are you finished?”

Weiss: “I’m thinking about making my next car a hybrid.”
Sydney: “You should. I have one.”
Weiss: “What do you think, Arvin?”
(Silence)
Weiss: “Uhh, Mr. Sloane.”
Jack: “Well, considering the rapidly growing demand for fuel in nations like China and India, not to mention the world’s oil supply is expected to peak in the next five years, then sharply plummet, I think it’s pretty clear we’re looking at an exponential rise in global conflict along with an energy crisis of unfathomable proportions.”
(More silence)
Jack: “So yes, I’d say a hybrid is an excellent idea.”
Weiss: “That’s what I thought.”


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