Warning: Spoiler Alert
Niels finally wakes to find Chandler standing over him. He proceeds to give Chandler most of what he’s looking for. How has he survived. Not from the virus that he is carrying, but how did he get from point A to being the Immunes secret weapon. Niels only makes one request. He wants to speak to Dr. Scott. A proposition Dr. Scott wants nothing to do with. She plans to do everything the hard way, the good old-fashioned scientific method way. Then Chandler says something that should lessen her resistance.
Chandler: He killed my wife! And I was able to talk to him. So unless you have a better idea…What if he can help. You have to talk to him.
Chandler ventures to the President’s quarters (I feel like there should be some cleaver name involving the word ‘Oval’, but chambers will have to do for now). Michener has accepted his role conceptually. It’s clear that his practical duties of Commander-in-Chief have not fully sunk in. Chandler explains that he will be consulted on anything strategic or military as they pertain to the purview of the office of the President. Michener still is visibly overwhelmed by such a thought.
Dr. Scott does her best to stay civil. It’s difficult but she is able to chew back her anger. Make slightly more complicated after Niels tries to assure her that his intention was never to spread the virus. As much as it must’ve pained her to do, she extends an invitation to take a look at her research and see if he can’t help with the mass production issue. They both look over the images of the failed attempts to turn the vaccine into an airborne delivery system. By the way, Niels stroking his neck beard is not exactly comforting to watch. Dr. Scott leads him in a direction she wants to pursue and he arrives at the same conclusion. They need untarnished, freshwater mussels. The mussels produce a spore that could get them one step closer to viability.
CMC Jeter, who has been tasked with bringing the President and his confidence of his office up to speed, accompanies the President to the mess. Bacon is very eager to flex is culinary chops for the President who is again overwhelmed by the mere attention. Lt. Mejia follows suit but it only adds to the awkwardness Michener is dealing with. After some forced small talk, he asks Jeter if they should head over to ‘that briefing’ as a means to get out of this situation he finds so difficult.
Out on the deck, Michener stands hunched over for fresh air. Jeter circles around him. Michener is surrounded by twenty year-olds who know exactly what to do at all times, while as he puts it, he can’t decide what to eat for lunch. Jeter starts in calm and transitions into his leader voice.
Jeter: The Navy’s been studying leadership since 1775. Between the Captain, the XO and myself, we have 67 years of experience. Leaders aren’t born, they’re made. And we believe in you, sir. Just give yourself time.
Dr. Scott and Niels’ collaboration is about to hit a snag if he doesn’t give up the stabilizing sequence. Niels begins playing dumb. She tells him that she already has samples of his blood and can find it the hard way. Niels then changes the direction of the conversation by inquiring about a picture on her desk. The mystery man photo. Niels probes and profiles Dr. Scott.
The Tact team arrives in a harbor presumably to find mussels for Dr. Scott. They begin to secure the marina when Burk spots a runner. The runner leads Burk into a hallway. He removes his mask to reveal he’s just a kid. Then more kids emerge from every door in the hallway, weapons drawn. This was a trap. Apparently there is a bounty on Naval personnel. Just before it gets hairy the rest of the Tact team arrive. These are kids who have no real experience or know-how in this area. The leader orders the other kids to put down their weapons.
Chandler comes inland to hopefully get more answers from “Ray” and the other kids. A real Lost Boys of Neverland situation. Chandler talks to Ray as if they are equals. Leaders of men. After the initial reaction, Ray shrugs it Chandler’s gesture. The step aside to speak privately. All indications are that the bounty was laid out by the Immunes. Chandler explains very plainly that the Immunes are a cult. Naturally immune to the virus and therefore see the cure as a detriment to their belief structure. Chandler offers to take all of Ray’s people on board the Nathan James and take them to a safer place to settle if they help locate the bounty hunters.
Ray confers with his numbers and tells Chandler they have a deal. Food and shelter for the bounty hunters with one condition. Ray gets to stay and fight alongside the Nathan James soldiers. A condition that Chandler rejects immediately. Ray insists based on the fact that he’s only six months away from the enlistment age and they still need information he has. Ray=Rufio.
The President summons Jeter. With a plate of food at his side, the President has a couple of requests. He’d like to view the return of the Tact team from the combat center and he would like to see any intel retrieved from the White House and anything they have on the Immunes. Jeter, stands at attention, agrees to everything and leaves. This is the first time President Michener displays the body language of a Commander-in-Chief. Let’s hope that’s all it is.
The Tact team with help from Ray set up an ambush for whoever these bounty hunters are. Some other Lost Boys try to befriend Tex and solicit his help in convincing the Captain to let them fight as well. Tex has no interest in any part of this conversation, especially the part about recruiting young boys to fight.
Niels’ blood is doing nothing to infect the test subject mice. Dr. Scott believes the virus adapted and migrated exclusively to Niels’ lungs and therefore, his blood would do nothing. Might also explain why he’s so contagious. She goes down to where Niels is being held and asks for a moment alone. She starts doing a thing all to recognizable. Dr. Scott is attempting to appeal to Niels’ humanity and dare I say, his urges to not remain alone. The very hint at sharing herself with someone who just might understand is enough to break him. He doesn’t give her the sequence but tells her how to get it. Afterwards, she begins showing effects of someone with the beginning onset of the virus, just by getting that close to his breath. That or she’s just that repulsed by him.
In a stunningly stupid move, Ray fires a flare into the air when asked how to signal the bounty hunters. Ray is afraid of getting ‘benched’ once the Nathan James has what it wants. As it turns out that little stunt with the flare gun got him benched immediately. The Nathan James relays to Chandler that Cody (one of the Lost Boys) was not on the transport. This is the same time that Ray busts out of the trailer. All of this happening while the Tact team is executing their ambush on the bounty hunters. Chandler goes out on his own to find and secure Cody.
Chandler continues to search and eventually finds Cody. Laid out on the floor, visibly dead. There is a click. One of the bounty hunters has his rifle on Chandler. “The boss wants you alive. Unless you put up a fight. Please put up a fight.” Then something long pierces the bounty hunters torso. That something was a harpoon gun at the hands of Ray, who is currently experiencing his first casualty of war, Cody.
Chandler, Slattery, Jeter, Garnett, and Granderson debrief the President with what they’ve found. Three Immunes carrying what look like three smart phones, despite no indication of cellular use. Just as one would hope from an installed President, Michener hears the update and charges right into what needs to be done next. He begins with convincing the American public that they are not the bad guys and moves into how to best find and help the survivors before Ramsey’s men get to them all during a lovely gradual audio fade out.
On board the Nathan James, Ray reflects on his loss. Chandler offers to take him along to check out a nearby safe zone. Ray doesn’t hear much of that as he’s too busy blaming himself for Cody’s actions.
Ray: I knew Cody was amped up to join the fight. He never would have stayed behind if I went along like you said.
Chandler: Little old saying. Anyone can hold the helm while the sea is calm. Being a leader is not about being perfect. It’s about weathering the storm and carrying on.
Niels believes he’s having a nice moment with Dr. Scott reflecting on the good team they make. Dr. Scott slowly and methodically begins to change her tone. She plans to use gene scissoring to remove one very specific gene from Niels. Since the virus resides exclusively in Niels’ lungs that would be difficult but doable. Here’s that moment when it clicks in Niels’ own brain. By removing the gene it would essentially open Pandora’s box inside Niels body allowing the virus to run free like it would any other host. Killing Niels with extreme prejudice. Once the concept sinks in, Niels begins bleeding from his eye socket. Dr. Scott, O’Connor, and Miller all have front row seats to witness the death of “Niels: Carrier of the Apocalypse”.