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|Original air date|
Kathleen Quinlan as Senator Michaels
|Universe Season 2|
MSgt. Ronald Greer and Camile Wray use the long-range communication device to let inspection from Earth get aboard. At the same time Homeworld Command is attacked and they are trapped in a collapsed building along with a powerful bomb.
A group of people are forced to evacuate to Destiny after an attack on Icarus Base by the Lucian Alliance, and are now trapped there. Dr. Nicholas Rush breaks the master code and discovers the Bridge. After the rest of the crew discovers the bridge, Rush asks Colonel Everett Young to embrace Destiny's mission. After a failed Alliance invasion, Homeworld Command believes an attack on Earth is being planned. Young is grief-stricken over the death of Sgt. Hunter Riley. After arriving on Destiny, tensions arise between Camile Wray and MSgt. Ronald Greer. Before an attempt to dial Earth inside a Star, an alternate Dr. Nicholas Rush is found on an Ancient shuttle and convinces the expedition to abort the attempt.
Colonel David Telford uses the Long-range communication device to connect to Destiny, where he is met by Colonel Everett Young and Dr. Nicholas Rush. He wants an explanation of what went wrong. Rush explains how the attempt to dial Earth sent Destiny back in time, and that Telford is the only survivor of that timeline. When Telford asks about his double, Young tells him that he died in an accident aboard the other Destiny. Telford is quick to accept their story since he has more pressing matters to discuss. Senator Michaels, the new head of the Offworld Spending Committee, is coming to Destiny to investigate Rush's "signal from God". Rush protests the name, which he didn't coin, but Telford explains that others on Earth have started using it.
Young meets with Camile Wray to explain the situation. Michaels is coming to assess the worth of investing in a new Icarus project to dial Destiny. Wray notes that it doesn't really help them as far as getting home is concerned, though Young sees the value in having a supply line. Wray offers to switch with Michaels so she can talk to the International Oversight Advisory. Young adds that they'll need a male volunteer to switch with Dr. Andrew Covel, who is coming as a scientific advisor. Wray suggests that Young have MSgt. Ronald Greer switch with Covel. Young notes that Greer has always turned it down before, but Wray urges him to make it an order, citing his instability prior to the mission as a good reason for some off-time.
In the comm lab, Greer quickly realizes that Wray is responsible for having him use the stones, claiming he doesn't need to rest. Wray sarcastically notes that he's the "perfect soldier" and suggests they just get on with it. At Homeworld Command, Greer and Wray are confronted by an armed guard who demands that they identify themselves. Once they do, Telford comes in and explains that they're on a heightened terror alert due to a possible Lucian Alliance attack.
In the Mess hall, Dr. Dale Volker, Dr. Adam Brody, and Eli Wallace discuss Covel, who is apparently the new head of research at Stargate Command. Rush knows Covel, having worked with him at Cornell prior to joining the Stargate Program. Young radios Rush, informing him that Michaels and Covel have arrived. Rush tells Young he's coming, but is in no hurry to leave. After an awkward pause, they ask Rush what Covel is like. He describes Covel as a man fond of keeping secrets, and Volker comments that they "know the type".
Young leads Michaels and Covel on a tour through the ship. Covel is impressed by the age of the design. Michaels, however, is more concerned with the most recent attempt to dial Earth, wanting to know if they've given up on trying to dial from within a star. Rush, coming in from an adjacent hall, stops to listen in without being seen. Young deflects Michaels' question, as he's not the one to ask about the viability of dialing Earth. She notes that it is his responsibility to get everyone home, which Young counters by asserting that he wants to be able to do it safely. Michaels and Covel seem to suspect that Rush may have sabotaged the attempt, even though Young defends him. Rush interrupts at this point. Michaels changes the subject, wanting to see Chloe Armstrong, who she's known for a long time. Rush takes them to the bridge, where Chloe is currently working.
A soldier is sweeping the building with a Geiger counter. Telford explains that the Alliance has managed to plant Naquadria bombs at a couple of their offworld bases, and might try the same here. Greer offers to help, letting his distrust of Telford slip through, but is curtly dismissed.
On Destiny, Michaels' group meets Chloe on the bridge. Chloe is happy to see Michaels. When questioned about her work, Chloe explains that she has been going over the ship's FTL logs, trying to figure out how to streamline their manual jumps. Michaels is surprised by her aptitude in the subject, which Chloe passes off as a result of her change. Michaels wants to speak with Chloe privately, so they head to her quarters. Covel and Rush remain on the bridge. Covel congratulates Rush on his work, being suitably impressed with all he's seen.
On Earth, Greer decides to leave, but is stopped by Wray, who tries to convince him to make the most of his time on Earth. Greer is more focused on the Lucian Alliance threat, believing they did nothing to prevent it. Wray counters that the intelligence the prisoners gave up is valuable, but Greer isn't sure they didn't just lie so they could stay on board. As he sees it, they wasted their resources and risked their safety keeping the prisoners. Before their argument can any further, however, an air strike siren sounds throughout the building. Greer immediately drags Wray into a nearby room, where the ceiling collapses on top of them.
Michaels and Chloe discuss life on Destiny, which Michaels is amazed Chloe has managed to put up with for an entire year. Chloe notes that they do go to planets through the Stargate. Michaels brings up Chloe's mother, who she says is holding up. She apologizes for Chloe not having been brought home sooner since, aside from Eli, everyone else agreed to this kind of risk while Chloe was never part of the program. She never felt that such a life was for Chloe.
Homeworld Command is evacuated. Wray comes to and starts looking for Greer. Once he wakes up, they find that his knee has been twisted by the falling debris. The ceiling collapses in the corridor outside, showing further instability in the building's structure. She fashions a splint for Greer and the two begin looking for an exit.
Covel listens to the signal with Rush. He is willing to admit there's a pattern to it, but seems reluctant to confirm Rush's findings for those on Earth. Rush notes that Covel could have taken the position at Icarus before Rush, but turned it down. Covel admits that he thought it nonsense, but now that it's been proven true, there are people that would either try to bend it to their own aims or bury it and those connected to it. Rush cynically notes that Covel just isn't willing to pick a side without knowing which would come out on top. Covel points out that Rush, as always, isn't making things easy.
As Greer and Wray search for an exit, they come across another soldier, Airman Evans. Nearby, they find a radio on the body of another soldier. Greer also has Wray take his gun, just in case. Wray radios Telford, who explains that a cloaked Tel'tak was detected and crashed into the building, near the comm lab. Since they haven't gone back to their own bodies, the device must still be active. Telford adds that the ship was likely carrying a naquadria bomb.
Michaels' next stop is the infirmary, where Lt. Tamara Johansen and Varro are having a friendly conversation. Young introduces the senator. Scott introduces Varro, and TJ tells her how he's been aiding her. Michaels wishes to speak to TJ alone, so the others leave. She suspects that TJ has had a hard time tending to the crew with inadequate training. TJ has a positive outlook, since with the Ancient database unlocked she is starting to learn about the advanced medical technology on Destiny. Michaels believes that the presence of an actual doctor would help greatly, though TJ doubts there would be many volunteers for a one-way trip.
Greer, Wray, and Evans continue searching for an exit from the damaged building, only to find the nearest one blocked by debris. She radios the situation to Telford. He informs them that the bomb squad is having trouble getting through the wreckage, and the heavier equipment needed to get through will not be available in time. Since they are near the crash site of the cargo ship, Wray suggests that they could find and disarm the bomb with assistance over the radio, seeing as how they have no way to escape the building anyway.
Covel stops by the Control interface room to meet Eli, who he says is known as the "boy wonder" to the scientists on Earth. Eli wonders if this makes Rush Batman, but Covel apparently doesn't get the reference. Covel wants to know their thoughts on the ship and the signal.
At Homeworld Command, Wray's group is still making their way to the cargo ship. Wray notices Greer's pain from his injury and offers to stop, noting that she's having trouble breathing. Evans explains that the dust from the debris has gotten in her lungs. Greer insists on continuing forward, much to her dismay. This sparks an argument between the two. Greer claims to not like people like Wray, who talk without ever acting. Wray, however, believes Greer's real problem is an unwillingness to face his own problems, an area which Wray is trained to deal with. Evans eventually manages to silence them after he hears a consistent ticking sound. Wray realizes this is the geiger counter the soldier was using earlier. She finds an arm sticking out of the rubble, but is horrified upon finding that the arm isn't connected to the soldier anymore. Greer calms her down while Evans digs the geiger counter out. He passes it to Wray, being unable to make sense of it himself. It is registering deadly levels of radiation, meaning they are as good as dead.
Young meets with Michaels and Covel on the Observation deck. Though they have yet to finish their assessment, Michaels has some concerns. The first Icarus project took six months to set up, not including the time to find a suitable planet and get approval in the first place. Covel doesn't believe Destiny will last that long, and blames the crew for putting it in its current state. Brody radios to inform Young that the ship is about to drop out of FTL, so he warns them to prepare for the momentary signal interruption.
Wray believes that she and Greer are responsible for dooming their host bodies to die, but Greer denies this; they couldn't have known about the radiation, so heading for the bomb was the right call. Evans believes that they might have a chance of survival if they leave the building, claiming that Wray isn't qualified to declare them dead since she isn't a scientist. This comment seems to catch her attention for a moment, but Wray just counters that she's been around scientists long enough to know better. Evans covertly grabs a pen from a nearby desk.
Destiny dropping out of FTL interrupts the signal, returning Michaels and Covel to their bodies. They are surprised by the conditions at Homeworld Command. Covel asks for the geiger counter from Michaels. Meanwhile, Wray tries to tell Young about the Lucian Alliance attack and the radiation. The signal is restored before she can finish, though Greer is sure that Michaels and Covel will fill in the gaps, having seen the destruction for themselves. Young tries to disconnect the link manually for a full report, but the link remains active even with the base shut down.
Evans uses the distraction to take Wray hostage, demanding that Greer give up the gun and that they find another exit. Wray orders Greer to shoot, telling him that Evans is actually a Lucian Alliance member. She grabs his hand to keep him from stabbing her, allowing Greer to shoot him in the shoulder. Once Wray is clear, he shoots again to kill him. When Greer asks how she knew, she explains that she never told Evans she was a scientist, and he'd have no way of knowing just by her name unless he had read her file. She reveals a clan tattoo on his back to confirm it. She believes he was the pilot and only occupant of the cargo ship, presumably having intended to land the ship under cloak then walk off, leaving the bomb to detonate on a timer. They continue their search, eventually locating the ship.
On Destiny, Rush and Covel try to diagnose the problem with the stones. It seems that the command signal is being affected by the radiation on the other end, preventing the stones on Earth from receiving the command signal to disconnect. Covel offers to help boost that portion of the signal. Varro is brought in by TJ, having heard about the attack from her. He offers his knowledge of how to disarm the bomb.
Greer and Wray enter the ship. The radiation is coming from a large box in the middle of the room. On the top is glowing, purple/white barrier. Wray radios Telford for assistance, but their proximity to the bomb is blocking the signal.
Varro goes over the basic design of the bomb. While disarming it is relatively simple, the bomb case has a holographic shell which makes it impossible to see inside, necessitating that it be disarmed by touch alone. Young doesn't trust Varro, even though TJ does, and Scott notes that they have no way to deliver the message anyway. Eli suggests that if disarming the bomb is simple, a momentary interruption would be enough time to pass the instructions to Wray and Greer. Brody protests, as they have not passed the three-hour mark for a safe jump. Eli believes that the engines can handle one such jump, but any further attempts would surely result in irreparable damage. Varro believes he can pass the message in that time.
Wray examines the bomb, having no way to know when or even if it will go off. She begins examining the holographic shell, then decides to check out the bomb itself. She admits to having no idea what she plans to do after that.
Chloe finds Michaels in the mess hall, since she needs to be brought to the comm lab so Varro can tell Wray and Greer how to disarm the bomb. Michaels isn't confident in Varro, and chastises herself over coming to Destiny in the first place when the Alliance was the more immediate concern. Chloe tries to convince her of the importance of Destiny's mission, relating how, in the alternate timeline, she volunteered to stay on Destiny. Michaels doesn't believe Chloe would do such a thing. Chloe explains that her father died to save everyone else, and she believes that his sacrifice was for a greater purpose.
Wray blindly feels the bomb just to get an idea of what they're dealing with. Destiny jumps to FTL, interrupting the connection, and Varro tries to explain how to disarm the bomb. Unfortunately, the connection is restored before he can finish. They begin to carry out his instructions, but find themselves stuck without the full message.
Rush has finally devised a way to terminate the communication link, and reveals that he could have done so earlier had Covel not sabotaged his work. Covel admits to it, having seen the radiation levels on the geiger counter during the first disconnect and panicked. Rush confronts him on the fact that he'll die anyway if their bodies die on Earth, but Covel believes that Dr. Amanda Perry, the last victim of such a death, was simply too physically frail to survive. Young is appalled by Covel's willingness to essentially steal someone else's body, though Covel counters that Wray and Greer only took the risk since they aren't using their own bodies to begin with, and doesn't see why he should have to die for that. Michaels, however, sees this as an opportunity to disarm the bomb. She can learn the procedure from Varro and do it herself. Covel protests, but Young isn't giving him the option.
Greer is desperate to keep trying, but Wray convinces him that any tampering with the bomb will probably detonate it. By leaving it be, they give the military more time to evacuate civilians. Greer and Wray decide to wait it out. She apologizes for never having gotten along with him, noting their difference of opinion in action verses discussion. Now in a situation where they have nothing to do but talk, Greer suggests they do so. They both get a laugh out of the fact that Wray can't think of anything to say.
Michaels and Covel prepare to return to their bodies. Michaels asks Young to tell Chloe that she's proud of her. Rush disconnects the base, returning them to their bodies. Michaels prepares to disarm the bomb.
Wray finds Greer on the observation deck. He asks about Earth, and she tells him that they haven't managed to make a connection since returning to their own bodies. Greer notes that Wray has a friend in Washington D.C.; Wray explains that Sharon Walker is more than just a friend, and wishes she had another chance to speak with her. Greer admits that he would have liked to speak with his mother, as they weren't on the best of terms after he joined the military. Wray assures him that, being his mother, she already knows what he wanted to tell her.
Ancient; Senator Alan Armstrong; Patricia Armstrong; Batman; Cloak; Communication lab; Control interface room; Cornell University; Cosmic microwave background radiation; Destiny Bridge; Destiny infirmary; Faster-Than-Light engine; Geiger counter; Angela Greer; Homeworld Command; Icarus Base; International Oversight Advisory; Long-range communication device; Long-range communication stone; Lucian Alliance; Lucian Alliance attack on Earth; Lucian Alliance naquadria bomb; Milky Way; Mess hall; Naquadria; Observation deck; Pegasus; Amanda Perry; Radiation poisoning; Tattoo; Tel'tak; Sharon Walker; Tau'ri-Lucian Alliance war; Washington D.C.
Brody: (About Covel) So, uh, what's he like?
Rush: I didn't know him that well, actually.
Brody: But, you said you worked with him.
Rush: Yeah, what can I tell you. He's the type of man…who likes to keep secrets. (He leaves)
Volker: Yeah, we know the type.
Covel: I think I'm listening to a recording that's over a million years old. Captured with technology I can't imagine. Processed and filtered using algorithms I don't even understand.
Rush: But you can see the structure?
Covel: Yes. I'm just not quite sure I believe it. Listen, listen! I'll admit, there's a lot of impressive data here. And if I could transmit it all back to Earth and get twenty of our best people working on this for the next five years, maybe, maybe I could confirm it. I can't do that! With the stones, it's basically word of mouth. I have to make a judgement call here. Do you have any idea what kind of a position that puts me in?
Rush: I know that you were offered Icarus before they gave it to me. And I know you turned it down. You couldn't see the potential.
Covel: I thought it was a bunch of mythological mumbo-jumbo about the gods and ultimate understanding!
Rush: Yeah, well this proves you wrong.
Covel: We are talking about evidence of an intelligence present at the beginning of time.
Covel: Now, you can deny it all you like. They're going to call it proof of the existence of God! And for every politician that tries to take that and bend it for his own ends, there can be just as many, maybe more, who try to bury it, Nick. They'll try to bury it, and you along with it!
Rush: So what are you saying, Andrew? What are you trying to tell me? You don't want to pick a side because you're not sure which one's going to win.
Covel: Same old Nick. You never make things easy, do you.
Wray: You know, I'm sorry we never got along better. It's just we see things differently. And you like to take action, and I like to talk things through.
Greer: Well, we're here now. And we're not going anywhere. So, let's talk.
Wray: I can't think of anything else to say.
Greer: Have you heard anything?
Wray: Not yet.
Greer: We've been back for hours.
Wray: I know. We're going to keep someone on the stones 24/7 until we get a connection.
Greer: If we get a connection… I heard you have a friend who lives in D.C.
Wray: Sharon. She's um, more than a friend, actually… I wish I could talk to her one more time, you know? Tell her how much she means to me.
Greer: Yeah. Been thinking about my mom. Things haven't really been that-that good between us. She never really wanted me to join the military. Last time I saw her I didn't really say everything that I wanted to say.
Wray: She's your mother, Ron. She knows. Anyway, I'm sure this will all get resolved, and you can go and tell her yourself, soon enough.
Greer: Right. Soon enough.
- According to Senator Michaels, the crew of Destiny has been aboard for a year.
- This is the first of two episodes of Stargate Universe written by Linda McGibney.
- French Stewart (Dr. Andrew Covel) previously played Lt. Feretti in the original Stargate film. Stewart is the fourth actor from the original feature film to appear on the TV franchise—after Alexis Cruz (Skaara) and Erick Avari (Kasuf), who played their original characters, and Richard Kind (Dr. Gary Meyers, Lucius Lavin)
- No one thought to use the cargo ship's on-board Ring Platform to gain access to the ship and, if possible, get rid of the bomb.
- It was a crashed cargo ship. There are any number of reasons why the rings would be not working or unreachable.