The thugs realize their communications have been jammed, and also aren't too happy about the snipers set up on a nearby roof. (Perhaps they too are tired of that particular hostage movie cliché.) Meanwhile, John and Dorian are on their looong trek up the stairs. Since signals are now jammed, Dorian is picking up local emergency calls, including ones being made from within the building. (He's basically a walking cell tower. Just go with it.) He answers a distress call from Paige, a hostage who is hiding out in a utility closet. (Paige is played by Emily Rios, aka Jesse's girlfriend Andrea on Breaking Bad. Among her post-Breaking Bad roles are a reporter hunting a serial killer on The Bridge and a hostage in a bleak, crime-ridden future. Someone please give this poor woman a nice heartwarming CW show, stat.)
Paige is worried about her sister who came to visit her at work and is now among the hostages. She has reason to worry, because the thugs decide to shoot one of the hostages and toss him out of a window as "the next phase" of their plan. (They also attach a helpful note to the poor guy that reads,"No cops, stay out" in case there was any ambiguity there.) Maldonado then tells Det. Paul to "initiate hostage protocol," which you'd think she would've ordered back before the sky started raining hostages.
Because of the whole blocking communications thing, the cops have to send up a flying drone to deliver a phone to the head thug so that he can tell them his demands, which is kind of dumb but at least the drone special effects look neat. He wants getaway vehicles on the roof, a clear airspace to the border and a fission ignitor, a piece of military grade tech that Maldonado doesn't have the authority to give him. (She doesn't say it's above her pay grade, but she might as well have.) Luckily the lead thug is on the phone long enough for the facial recognition software at police headquarters to ID him as Lucas Vincent, a member of the Holy Reclamation Army. Lucas gives Maldonado a timeline of 43 minutes, which is conveniently how much time there is left in the episode. (It's too bad Fox didn't haul the ticking onscreen clock from 24 out of retirement for the occasion.)
Meanwhile, John and Dorian are still going up the stairs and chatting with Paige. Dorian tells John that a fission ignitor is a trigger device for a megaton level explosive and Paige is all, "Hey, scared hostage over here!" John then tells her a story about the time he went ice fishing with his dad and how he fell under the ice and thought he would die, but he knew he'd be safe cause his daddy was there and even Dorian is bored by this story and he's a robot.
NEXT: Gone Fission