The return from the commercial break takes us to Philadelphia, where Danny and Rachel are eating a fine meal – one probably much finer than Danny has had in a while – of steak and seasoned potatoes. He’s not happy about being trapped in a gilded cage, but his mother reminds him they have food and beds. “It could get a lot worse,” she says.
A militiaman walks in and takes Rachel to Monroe. The general questions her about the “seemingly magical” pendants that she’s told him about – they haven’t been able to find a single one. Monroe isn’t too pleased about this; he tells Rachel that they keep coming across abandoned houses instead of ones occupied with people who have a Locket of Power. Most of her colleagues are not where she said they’d be, key word being “most” – they did find and capture one man, Dr. Bradley Jaffen. He’s been in Philadelphia for three weeks, but he hasn’t cracked. He’s divulged nothing about a pendant or why the lights went out.
Flashback time! A very pregnant Rachel steps out of her car, a collection of files and papers in hand, and walks toward what we learn is the lab of Ben, Rachel, Bradley and Grace.
There, Ben is speaking to a Mr. Flynn, a balding G-Man type, wearing a black suit and tie. Ben explains what they were trying to do, and here’s the closest we get this episode to finding out why the blackout happened:
“My partners and I – we set out to invent a device that generates clean, low-cost electricity,” Ben says via cell phone to Mr. Flynn, who is behind a sheet of glass in a room filled with electronics. “We failed completely. It doesn’t work. In fact, it does just the opposite of what we intended. Instead of generating electricity, it in inhibits it.”
And they demonstrate: Out sputters all the electronics in the room where Mr. Flynn stands. TVs, light bulbs, a toy robot, a neon ‘open’ sign and the cell phone he’s been speaking on all fall dark and dead. Mr. Flynn and Ben exchange a few meaningful looks, then Grace and Brad turn the room's power back on, and Ben lets his guest out of the room.
“Can this be replicated?” Mr. Flynn asks. Yes, is Ben’s answer. “On how large a scale?” Dun-dun-dunnn!
We don’t hear an answer to that question because that’s when Rachel walks in and interrupts. Ben introduces his wife to Mr. Flynn, and it turns out there’s a reason why he looks like a G-man: he’s Secretary Flynn from the Department of Defense. And he wants to offer Ben’s team a full contract.
Rachel puts on a smile, but it’s clearly put-on – she’s not too pleased about this man’s presence in her lab, so she pulls he husband aside. In private, she tells Ben how pissed she is that she wasn’t told about this earlier. Ben says he kept it from her because he knew she’d react this way, but they have to accept the government funding – their start-up isn’t going to last much longer. And then he says the irony-laced, “Another month, we won’t be able to keep the lights on.”
But that doesn’t matter to Rachel, because the DOD’s presence in their lab points to one probability: “What if they want to use it as a weapon?”
NEXT PAGE: In go children, out come soldiers