The CIA isn't able to assess whether anyone is alive, and for several minutes, Dar and Saul try to keep the calm. Dar tries to talk Higgins down from calling the president -- "Keep a cool head and take great care not to panic," he says -- but Higgins finds another possible solution.
He calls Saul, asking to use one of the drones to strike the explosion site and say that the U.S. found an Al Qaeda cell trying to smuggle Brody into Iran as the cover story. Carrie, of course, immediately refuses. "It's a smart play if they're dead," Higgins says, taking the title of Cold Government Rep from Lockhart. "He doesn't care if they're alive," she spits back. "All he gives a s--t about is covering his ass."
She doesn't have to worry for long, though -- Saul refuses to order a strike and hangs up on Higgins. Minutes later, they see movement in the vehicle and watch as Brody rolls out from the passenger side of the truck and drags out Alpha with him. Both are determined to be alive from the heat signatures, but as the camera goes back to showing Brody and Alpha in the flesh, we see that the soldier has lost his leg.
Brody takes Alpha's satellite phone and explains what happened, while Carrie looks relieved to hear his voice. Brody is back in Marine mode, quickly relaying how he can treat Alpha's shock but needs more men to help get them out. "I'm going to get you out of here," he tells the wounded soldier.
But once again, the task's not easy. Iraqi patrol has closed in after seeing the explosion and begins firing at Brody and the soldiers. The CIA calculates that they'll need eight minutes to get out and across the border, but it's clear that they can't manage to achieve enough of that time. Saul turns to the general for advice, and he explains that the only option left is to think about getting the entire team out. "In other words, we have to abort," Carrie realizes, and Saul gives the go-ahead for abandoning the intelligence mission. Even Lockhart looks disappointed. "Saul, you had some bad luck," he says. "I'm sorry." Carrie tries a different approach, reminding Saul of their silver lining. "At least we have Javadi," she says. "He's still in play. That's not nothing." Saul replies with a quiet "yeah" and then turns and leaves the room. Still chewing his lucky gum, he walks over to the elevator, presses a button, removes his glasses, and rubs his forehead. The CIA acting director looks overwhelmed and exhausted, and there's nothing he can do about this mission going wrong.
Except that Brody is protesting the call to abort. "I'm not going back," he declares. "I'm gonna walk across that border." No matter what happens, Brody will always defy the initial orders. The B-team leader (who I'm going to call Bravo, though he's listed as "Yousef" in the credits and is the same soldier who talked to Brody last week about Carrie over a game of chess) tries to hold him down, but Brody slips away. "The Passenger is not f--king compliant," he yells back over his sat phone.
Yet again, the CIA tries the Carrie Card, as she insists on speaking to Brody. Quinn gives her a vote of confidence as well, though he may have banked on her appealing to Brody with the pregnancy news.
She doesn't bite, however, instead trying to coax Brody away from his stubborn belief that he can make the 300 yards to Brody in the middle of gunfire and accomplish the mission in Iran alone. "You can't do this by yourself," she says. "Stop and think this through."
"You're wrong, Carrie," he responds. "You're gonna get me home."
It's a completely ridiculous belief, and Carrie tells him this. "No, don't put that on me, it's a fantasy," she says. "You'll find a way," he replies, not backing down. "I have faith. That's all, out."
And just at that moment, Brody manages to dash out into the open and toward the border. The CIA mobilizes the drone, which kicks in and fires, as Bravo ushers the team to move out. At the last minute, he turns back to run to Brody and buy him time to cross the border.
Brody thanks him, takes a deep breath, and turns to run. But just as he stands up, he's met with a line of soldiers, slowly approaching their position.
NEXT: 'Are you ready?'