The Real World
Transcript by Callie Sullivan
The camera pans over a bed to reveal Doctor Elizabeth Weir lying asleep, covered by a white sheet and blue blanket. She opens her eyes, looks around as if confused, and pushes the bedclothes down to reveal that she is wearing white hospital pyjamas. She sits up and looks around the room. It's a stark white hospital room with little furniture in it -- only the bed, a plastic chair and a drinking water fountain. Behind the bed, sunlight streams through the blinds of the window. Elizabeth gets out of bed and turns to the window as the sound of an ambulance siren can be heard in the distance. She walks to the window, reaches out and widens the gap between two of the slats in the blind to look outside. We can see little of what she sees but there is a red brick building opposite her room. Wherever she is, it definitely isn't Atlantis. As she lets go of the slats, she realises that she has a plastic medical bracelet around her wrist. She looks at the writing on it for a moment, then turns and looks around the room again. Walking across to the door, she tries to open it, only to find it locked. She looks through the window in the door and sees a long corridor. She bangs on the door.
(A man in a suit and a female nurse come around the corner at the far end of the corridor and walk briskly towards her room. As they reach the door, Elizabeth backs away from it as the man takes out a bunch of keys, unlocks the door and comes inside.)
FLETCHER: Good morning, Doctor Weir. I'm Doctor Adam Fletcher.
WEIR: Where am I?
FLETCHER: You're in the Acute Care Unit of Willoughby State Hospital.
(Elizabeth stares as she recognises the name.)
WEIR: Willoughby. That's, um, that's a psychiatric hospital.
FLETCHER: Outside D.C. Yes.
WEIR: I'm on Earth?
(Fletcher smiles and nods patiently.)
WEIR: When did I get back?
FLETCHER: You mean back to Earth? Doctor Weir, you never left.
LATER. Elizabeth and Fletcher have moved to his office -- which overlooks the hospital's Recreation Room -- and are sitting either side of his desk. Elizabeth is now wearing a blue bathrobe over her pyjamas.
FLETCHER: You had just begun mediating a treaty for the U.N. when you collapsed mid-speech. You've been under a tremendous amount of stress recently. The treaty negotiation was the final straw that triggered what is known as a brief reactive psychosis.
(Elizabeth looks down briefly, bewildered.)
FLETCHER: I know, you're confused. This type of disorder can be very frightening, but the good news is your condition is most likely transitory. These episodes usually pass within a number of days.
WEIR: I'm sorry, but how did I get here?
FLETCHER: You were transported by ambulance to a hospital in D.C., then ...
WEIR: No, I mean from Atlantis.
(Fletcher's eyes flicker. He clearly doesn't understand the question.)
WEIR: I-I don't remember coming back.
(Elizabeth narrows her eyes.)
WEIR: What's your security clearance?
FLETCHER: Did you want to talk to someone regarding the treaty?
(Now it's Elizabeth's turn to look confused.)
FLETCHER: The U.N. Accord -- non-nuclear proliferation in North Africa. That's what you were mediating when you collapsed.
WEIR: I negotiated that treaty well over two years ago.
FLETCHER: No ... three days ago. (Elizabeth stares at him.) Since then you've been here, in a severely depressed and near-catatonic state.
WEIR: No! No ... (she leans forward in her chair) I was in my office, and I was reading over a mission report, and ...
(She trails off as Fletcher's eyes flicker again and he looks uncomfortable. Elizabeth stands up, looking around at the chair and the desk.)
WEIR: This ... this can't be real.
FLETCHER: Doctor Weir, I assure you, it is real.
WEIR: OK. OK, then, yes, there is somebody I need to speak with regarding the treaty ... right away.
LATER. A pair of feet wearing highly-polished shoes walks along a corridor. We switch to a close-up of the man's shoulder -- he is wearing dress blues with two stars on the shoulder. He walks into the Rec Room of the hospital where Elizabeth is sitting on a sofa looking down at the floor. As the man approaches her, she looks up and gets to her feet, smiling.
WEIR: Oh, thank God.
(We see who the man is. It's none other than General Jack O'Neill.)
WEIR: General O'Neill.
[See, told you.]
O'NEILL (smiling at her): Doctor Weir.
WEIR: Thank you so much for coming. Hopefully you'll be able to help sort out this entire mess.
O'NEILL: Anything I can do to help.
(Elizabeth sighs in relief and smiles.)
O'NEILL: Would you like me to ...?
WEIR: Oh, please. (She gestures to a chair near the sofa.)
O'NEILL (smiling): ... sit?
(He sits down in the chair as Elizabeth sits back down on the sofa.)
WEIR: It is a relief just seeing a friendly face.
O'NEILL: Yeah, I was going for friendly.
WEIR: This is all very confusing for me.
(She looks around the room. Although none of the other patients are very close by, she leans forward and speaks quietly.)
WEIR: The last thing I remember, I was in Atlantis and everything was fine, and next thing I know, I wake up here.
O'NEILL (awkwardly): Everything was ... fine in ... Atlantis?
(Elizabeth doesn't notice his hesitation.)
WEIR: The problem is my memory. I have no memory of coming back. I don't know if I came through the Stargate, or aboard the Daedalus, or ... (She trails off, finally noticing the look of confusion on his face.) What?
(Jack shakes his head.)
O'NEILL: Oh, um ... Doctor Weir, I'm not quite sure I'm qualified to be in this conversation.
WEIR: Oh, please. You ran Stargate Command. You are probably the most qualified person on this planet.
O'NEILL (dubiously): Yeah ... OK.
WEIR: Why are you doing this?
O'NEILL: What? I'm not trying to do anything.
WEIR: If you don't know what I'm talking about, then you're not really Jack O'Neill.
O'NEILL: Oh, I'm Jack O'Neill alright. That's the one thing in this conversation I'm sure about. I met you a few months ago when we first approached you to help broker this non-proliferation treaty. I don't know anything about Atlantis ... except that it was a fairly mediocre Donovan song, not one of my favourites.
(Elizabeth sits back, thoroughly confused.)
O'NEILL: Now, this Stargate programme I'm supposed to have run ...
WEIR: It's a facility inside Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado.
O'NEILL: That would be NORAD.
WEIR (leaning forward): It's underneath NORAD, yes.
O'NEILL: And the Stargate?
WEIR: It's a portal that allows intergalactic travel. The programme has been in operation over ten years. You started the whole thing when you first encountered ...
(She stops, staring in horror as -- for a few seconds -- Jack's head goes berserk, flicking rapidly around on his neck into all sorts of different positions so rapidly that it's a blur. During those few seconds it also changes briefly into what appears to be someone else's head -- perhaps Doctor Fletcher's -- before coming to rest again. As Elizabeth reels back in her seat, Jack looks at her as if nothing has happened and he doesn't understand her look of terror.)
(Elizabeth looks away, gasping.)
O'NEILL: Look, why don't I get Doctor Fletcher in here?
(He stands up. Elizabeth jumps up from the sofa and backs away from him.)
WEIR: No, just ... just leave. Please.
O'NEILL: Alright. Listen, for what it's worth, I hope you get better soon. We need you.
(He turns and walks away. Elizabeth watches him go, then looks around the room and sees a door to her left. She looks back over to the exit that Jack just went through. Standing there is an orderly watching her, smiling slightly. Elizabeth looks away, then turns to her left and walks towards the door, trying -- rather unconvincingly -- to look casual. As she gets nearer to the door, another orderly steps into her path. Elizabeth half turns as if to walk away, then turns back rapidly and punches him in the face. As he recoils from the punch, she pushes him aside and runs for the door but the man recovers and wraps his arms around her from behind her.)
WEIR: No! No, let me go! No! Please let me go!
(Grunting with the effort, the man hauls her off her feet and swings her away from the door. As she struggles to get free, Elizabeth's feet lash out, knocking a computer terminal off the desk nearby.)
WEIR: Let me go!
(She continues to struggle and the pair of them fall against a blackboard by the window, knocking it over. The other orderly runs over to help his colleague. Between them, they wrestle her to the floor. Doctor Fletcher runs in from his office, holding a syringe.)
WEIR: Let me go!
(As the orderlies hold her down on the floor, Fletcher kneels down, puts the syringe to her arm and injects her.)
WEIR: No! No! No!
HOSPITAL ROOM. Elizabeth is back in her room, sitting up in the bed with her head in her hands. We hear the sound of the door being unlocked and Fletcher walks in and comes over to her bedside.
FLETCHER: I've spoken with several people at the Pentagon.
(Elizabeth looks up at him.)
FLETCHER: They assure me there is no such thing as the Stargate programme ... (Elizabeth looks down) ... no Atlantis base in another galaxy, and no Department of Homeworld Security. I'm sorry.
WEIR: So you are telling me that I dreamt up the last two years of my life?
FLETCHER: Sometimes when a person experiences a significant emotional trauma, their mind just decides to shut down, to escape the pain.
WEIR: I have brokered dozens of treaties -- many of them very stressful, yes, but none of them bad enough to cause significant emotional trauma.
FLETCHER: The treaty negotiation was just the trigger point. We believe the actual trauma you suffered occurred three weeks ago. You were riding in a car with a man named Simon Wallace. (Elizabeth raises her head and looks up at him.) You remember Simon?
WEIR: Yes, of course I do. We're no longer in a relationship, but ...
FLETCHER: You were coming home from dinner. A car ran a red light and broadsided you, impacting the driver's side door. Simon was killed instantly.
(Elizabeth stares at him in shock.)
FLETCHER: You suffered only minor injuries in the crash, made a quick recovery, but in the days following Simon's funeral, several of your colleagues noticed your behaviour changing -- clear signs of depression, confusion.
WEIR (quietly): No.
FLETCHER: It culminated in your collapse at the negotiation.
WEIR: No. I'm sorry, I don't believe you.
FLETCHER: Sometimes the mind's only way to cope with tragedy is to completely erase it from memory ... and on rare occasions, supplant it with something else.
(Elizabeth's attention is suddenly distracted as she looks towards a window in the wall next to the door. The window is frosted but a figure can be seen through the glass. It's obviously a man wearing a black top but it's impossible to be sure who the man is. Elizabeth gazes at him as Fletcher continues talking.)
FLETCHER: In this case, something ...
(Noticing her gaze, he looks towards the window. There's no-one there. He looks back at Elizabeth.)
FLETCHER: You alright?
(Elizabeth continues to gaze toward the window.)
HOSPITAL GROUNDS. Fletcher escorts Elizabeth through the parkland towards an older woman waiting for them. He stops as they approach the woman and allows Elizabeth to walk on alone. The woman smiles at her with a mixture of happiness and concern. Elizabeth smiles back at her in delight.
MRS WEIR: Hello, sweetheart.
SHORTLY AFTERWARDS. Fletcher has left the two women alone and they walk deeper into the grounds arm in arm.
WEIR: I don't understand what's happening to me, mom. I feel as if ... as if I'm asleep or ... or I'm in a dream.
(Her mother stops and turns to her.)
MRS WEIR: Look at me. Do I look like a dream, hmm? (She reaches out and strokes Elizabeth's face.) My hand ... does it feel like a dream?
(Elizabeth takes her hand in both of her own and kisses it before holding it against her cheek again.)
WEIR: No ... but neither did the last two years of my life. (They start to walk again, still holding hands.) I just ... I can't believe it was all a figment of my imagination.
MRS WEIR: Give it time. (She stops again, patting Elizabeth's hand.) The doctors here will help you get through this. The accident ... (She hesitates, looking down in distress.) Getting that phonecall was the worst night of my life. (She gazes at Elizabeth.) We all miss Simon terribly, but ... I don't know what I'd do if I lost you.
(Elizabeth wraps her arms around her and hugs her as her mother fights back tears. After a few moments, Mrs Weir pats Elizabeth and pulls back from the embrace.)
MRS WEIR: Oh. Oh, wait. I have something.
(She reaches into her handbag and takes out a silver pocket watch on a chain.)
MRS WEIR: Your father's watch. (She gives it to Elizabeth.) I found it a few months ago. He'd always meant to give it to you.
WEIR (looking down at the watch): I know. (She stumbles over to a park bench nearby and sinks down onto it, still staring at the watch.) I mean ... I mean, I took this with me ...
(She trails off and buries her head in her hands, weeping in distress and confusion. Her mother sits down beside her and puts a comforting hand on her back, then strokes her hair.)
MRS WEIR: It's alright, sweetheart. You're safe now. You'll be fine. (She pulls her daughter close.) I'll make certain of it.
NIGHT TIME. Elizabeth is back in her room and lying restlessly in bed, unable to sleep. Opening her eyes, she looks to the side and is startled to see that an opaque plastic curtain has been drawn across part of the room. Behind the curtain there is a bed. Sitting on the end of the bed and facing her is the shape of a man, backlit and distorted through the curtain.
(The man doesn't respond. Nervously, Elizabeth gets out of bed and walks slowly and hesitantly across to the curtain. The man stands up and moves closer to his side of the curtain. Elizabeth backs away again. The man leans forward and his face presses into the plastic of the curtain. As he steps further forward, his face pushing deeper into the curtain, Elizabeth shrieks in terror and runs to the door, pounding on it and screaming. Fletcher appears outside and unlocks the door quickly. As he opens it, Elizabeth throws herself into his arms, terrified and still screaming.)
FLETCHER: What's wrong? What's wrong?
(Elizabeth calms down a little.)
FLETCHER: What's wrong?
(Elizabeth turns in his arms to look back into the room. The curtain, the second bed and the man have disappeared.)
DAY TIME. FLETCHER'S OFFICE. Elizabeth is sitting curled up in the chair opposite Fletcher, wearing a bathrobe over her pyjamas. She is still obviously perturbed by last night's events.
FLETCHER: I'm going to prescribe some additional medications for you: a mood stabiliser, an anti-depressant, and also stronger anti-psychotic medications. These should help reduce the acute symptoms you're experiencing.
WEIR (lost in thought): Wipe out the last two years of my life.
FLETCHER: I talked with your mother. She told me how, as a child, you had a brief phase where you dreamed of being an astronaut. She and your father even bought you a telescope for your twelfth birthday.
WEIR (smiling at the memories): That's true.
FLETCHER: Sometimes childhood fantasies can offer a peaceful refuge from the harsh realities of adult life.
WEIR: So you're saying when Simon died, my mind shut down and went to another galaxy?
FLETCHER: It travelled as far as it could to escape the pain.
WEIR: And in a matter of three days, I managed to live out an entire two years of my life?
FLETCHER: Time is relative in the dream state. People live out entire lifetimes in the blink of an eye. Imagine you were in my position, listening to your story. Travelling to another galaxy through a Stargate, leading an expedition to the lost city of Atlantis ... would you believe it?
(Elizabeth has no answer for him.)
REC ROOM. Elizabeth is typing on the computer. She calls up a news item with the headline, “Georgetown doctor killed in accident.” Underneath the heading is a photograph of firefighters working round an open-topped sports car lying on its side.
NURSE: Doctor Weir?
(Elizabeth looks up at a female nurse who is holding out a small plastic cup with some pills in it.)
NURSE: Your medications.
(Elizabeth takes the cup.)
(The nurse moves on. Elizabeth watches her go, then looks at the cup thoughtfully.)
BATHROOM. Elizabeth walks into the bathroom and, once the door has closed behind her, spits her pills into the toilet and flushes it.
GROUP THERAPY ROOM. Elizabeth and Fletcher and five other patients are sitting in a circle. Elizabeth looks bored. Fletcher addresses an elderly lady who, when she speaks, has an English accent.
FLETCHER: Have you gone out to the garden today?
ENID: No. I was going to, but they're out there, so I decided it would be better to wait.
FLETCHER: The others?
ENID: Yes. Four of them.
FLETCHER: Did they see you?
ENID: Of course. They were waiting for me. (She smiles around the circle.)
FLETCHER: Did you speak to them?
ENID: Yes. I told them what you told me to say: that my blood isn't theirs for the taking.
FLETCHER (smiling at her): Good for you, Enid. That was very brave.
(Enid smiles in delight. Elizabeth sits up in her chair, taking notice for the first time.)
WEIR (to Enid): Excuse me. What others?
ENID: The invaders, dear, from one of the moons of Saturn. They're cold-blooded, you see, so they need our warm blood for theirs. You have to be very careful.
(Elizabeth smiles at her politely.)
ENID: Doctor Fletcher doesn't think they're real, but I know the truth.
(Elizabeth and Fletcher exchange glances for a moment.)
FLETCHER: Doctor Weir, would you like to speak next? Perhaps you can tell the group about your experience in Atlantis.
(Enid's mouth drops open in amazement.)
FLETCHER: Sometimes when we share these experiences ...
WEIR: I said ... no.
HOSPITAL ROOM. An orderly unlocks the door to Elizabeth's room and stands aside to let her in. As she walks inside, he locks the door again. Elizabeth watches him walk away, then turns towards her bed. The surface of the bed contorts as if something is lying inside the mattress and struggling to get out. She stares in shock, then hesitantly walks towards the bed as the something continues to struggle. Nervously, she reaches out, takes hold of the top of the sheet and blanket, then rips them down the bed, jumping back at the same time. The sheet covering the mattress is flat and unmoving.
(Just as she is sighing with relief, there is a growling sound behind her. Elizabeth spins around and sees the shape of the man in the black top walking past the frosted window beside the door. He is heading towards the door. Elizabeth turns to look at the window in the door. The man's shoulder appears in the window, and he starts to rattle the doorknob. Elizabeth backs away from the door, shaking her head in fear.)
WEIR (quietly): Go away.
(The man moves away from the door and back to the frosted window, looking through it. The glass is distorted in such a way that it looks as if his face is completely blank of all features. The growling sound comes again, and there is a rattling sound as if he is trying to tug the glass out of the wall. Elizabeth, still backing away in fear, reaches the far wall and now sinks down to the floor, her hands covering her ears as the man continues trying to tug the glass free.)
WEIR (shouting): Go away!
(She closes her eyes in terror.)
NEXT DAY. Elizabeth, holding a cup of pills in one hand and a larger paper cup in the other, walks over to a water dispenser, leans down and pours some water into the larger cup. Straightening up, she looks at the pills for a moment, then tosses them into her mouth and drinks some water to help her swallow them.
HOSPITAL GROUNDS. Elizabeth is sitting on the park bench as Doctor Fletcher walks over. She smiles up at him.
(He gestures to the bench, silently asking if he can sit down.)
WEIR: Oh. (She indicates that he should sit.) Please.
(Fletcher sits down beside her.)
WEIR: Will I ever remember the accident?
FLETCHER: I don't know. Often in cases like this, the memory of the trauma never returns. Maybe it's the mind protecting itself.
WEIR: I suppose that's a good thing, really. I mean, there's pain enough, even without remembering it.
(She looks away, lost in thought for a moment, then looks back at Fletcher to see that he is smiling at her.)
FLETCHER: It's just you're doing great. I'm impressed. You're sleeping well?
WEIR: Yes. I'm sleeping better than I can remember.
FLETCHER: Good. I think you're ready.
OUTSIDE A HOUSE. A car draws up outside a house. Fletcher, who was driving, and Elizabeth, now dressed in street clothes, get out and she gazes at the house.
FLETCHER: Well, is it how you remember it?
WEIR: It's exactly how I remember it.
(She smiles at him and walks toward the house. The front door opens and a white dog runs out to greet her, whining happily. Elizabeth bends down to greet her.)
WEIR: Oh, Sedgewick! Hey, sweetie! Hey!
(Elizabeth's mother comes out of the house, smiling at her tearfully but happily.)
MRS WEIR: Welcome home, sweetheart.
(Elizabeth stands up and runs to her and they embrace.)
LATER. Elizabeth is sitting in the back yard reading a newspaper. She looks up at the sound of a voice.
O'NEILL: Hello, hello.
(Jack is standing at the gate wearing casual clothes.)
WEIR: General. (She smiles and stands up.)
O'NEILL: Enough with the “General,” OK? It's Jack.
WEIR (mischievously): Ah, but which Jack is it?
WEIR: I'm sorry. I was just trying to have some fun at my own expense. Too soon, maybe.
O'NEILL: So, y'all settled back in?
WEIR: Getting there.
O'NEILL: So I hear you're going back to teaching.
WEIR: Yeah, my poli-sci class at Georgetown. They're holding it open for me for the fall.
O'NEILL: Have you given any thought to coming back to the negotiating table? That non-proliferation treaty ... you kind of left us hanging mid-sentence there. Sure be nice to hear the punchline some day.
(Elizabeth turns away, thinking about it, then turns back to him.)
WEIR: And the U.N. would be OK with that?
O'NEILL: Not just OK -- they're insisting.
O'NEILL: When you're the best, you're the best, even if you've had a little ... (he pauses for a bit) ... setback, so to speak ... (he pauses for a longer moment, then continues uncomfortably) ... he said awkwardly.
(Elizabeth looks down, uncertain.)
O'NEILL: It's only if you feel you're ready to go back.
(Elizabeth walks towards him.)
WEIR: Well, actually, yeah. I think I am.
NIGHT TIME. Elizabeth walks into her bedroom, taking some pills and drinking some water to help her swallow them. She turns off the bedside light and climbs onto the bed. Sedgewick jumps up onto the bed beside her. Elizabeth reaches out and strokes her.
WEIR: Hey. It's good to be home.
(She lies down, gives Sedgewick a last scratch and pat, then settles down to sleep. The camera closes in on her face as she falls asleep. After a few seconds, the steady beeping of a heart monitor can be heard. The picture segues into ...
... an identical shot of Elizabeth lying on a bed with her eyes closed, but now she is wearing a nasal canula. A green light passes downwards across her face. The camera pulls back and we see that the light is coming from a scanner which is running down the length of the bed. The bed and a small area surrounding it are sealed inside a clear isolation tent in the Atlantis Infirmary. A medic in a Hazmat suit is standing near the bed looking at a screen. Outside the tent, Lieutenant Colonel John Sheppard walks over and looks in at Elizabeth. Behind him, Doctor Rodney McKay and Doctor Carson Beckett are looking at another screen.)
SHEPPARD: What've you got, Doc?
(Carson glances round at him before turning back to the screen.)
BECKETT: It's gettin' worse. It's not just her brain any more. They're spreading throughout her body.
(He turns to face John.)
BECKETT: We're losing her.
ATLANTIS. LATER. Teyla Emmagan and Ronon Dex are looking at the screen which shows the images from the scanner. The screen shows Elizabeth's skeleton and lots of small red dots. The dots are all through her body, but a larger number is clustered in her brain.
TEYLA: Those are all nanites?
BECKETT: Aye. They've spread throughout her entire body.
DEX: How'd they get inside her?
McKAY: Niam ...
(There's a brief flashback to “Progeny” when Niam tried to strangle Elizabeth in the Puddle Jumper.)
McKAY: ... when he attacked her in the Puddle Jumper. In that one brief moment of contact, he managed to infect her with nanites that began replicating immediately. Now they're multiplying exponentially, consuming her.
SHEPPARD: How much time does she have?
BECKETT: I don't think their intention's to kill her. If that were the case, they could have easily done it already. I don't think there's enough of ‘em to survive on their own. They need Elizabeth's body as raw material.
McKAY: So they're attempting to assimilate her -- to transform her into one of them?
BECKETT: Until they can reach sufficient numbers to form a viable independent entity, I would say so, yes.
TEYLA: This is how they replicate?
BECKETT: I doubt it's their normal way. It may well be a last-ditch attempt to survive.
DEX: How do we stop them?
SHEPPARD: E.M.P. Maybe we can hit ‘em with the electromagnetic pulse like we did last time.
BECKETT: I'm afraid we're well beyond that possibility now, Colonel. Looking at the scan, the nanites have literally bonded to neurons and other cells throughout her central nervous system. If we attempt to disable them, we'll likely end up killing her along with them.
TEYLA: Then how do we help her?
BECKETT: In a Petri dish, her white blood cells attacked individual nanites as though they were a bacterium or a virus, quite successfully, but for some reason inside her body, there's almost no immune response whatsoever. It's as if the nanites themselves have convinced her immune system that they pose no threat.
SHEPPARD: How do they do that?
BECKETT: I have no idea. I've begun administering drugs to help boost her immunities.
SHEPPARD (looking at the scan): Doesn't seem to be working.
BECKETT: Not yet. I've just increased the dosage. For the moment, we're losing this battle.
SOMEWHERE IN WASHINGTON D.C. (presumably). A car pulls up outside a building. Elizabeth gets out from the back seat, wearing a trouser suit. As she walks towards the building, Jack O'Neill, wearing dress blues, trots out to greet her.
O'NEILL: Hey! Right on time. You all set?
WEIR: I think so.
O'NEILL: Did you get some sleep?
WEIR: Yes. But still, I've been really tired lately.
O'NEILL: Well, maybe you've got to work yourself back into playing shape -- spend a little time doing some short shifts before you jump up to the first line.
WEIR: I'm sorry. I don't know a thing about football.
(She walks towards the building. Jack turns and follows her.)
O'NEILL: Nor hockey, apparently.
(A doorman holds the door open for them.)
(They walk into the foyer.)
WEIR: It's strange, Jack. I'm ... I feel kind of numb.
O'NEILL: You know, I feel like that all the time.
WEIR: I'm serious.
O'NEILL: Did you talk to Doctor Fletcher about it?
WEIR: Yes. He said it's probably just my medications. He's gonna adjust the doses, dial them back, see if that helps.
O'NEILL: Probably just a matter of balance, then, eh?
(Elizabeth smiles at him.)
O'NEILL: Alright. (They start to walk towards some stairs.) Now, just to be sure we're on the same page, we're against the proliferation of nuclear weapons, right?
WEIR: Got it!
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. As the scanner continues to roll back and forth above Elizabeth, John stands outside the isolation tent watching her. Carson and Rodney are nearby.
SHEPPARD: D'you think she's aware we're here?
McKAY: How can she be? She's unconscious.
(Carson walks over to John.)
BECKETT: You may be right. You could try talking to her -- tell her to keep fighting.
McKAY: And that will help exactly how?
BECKETT: In a coma, one's sense of hearing is the last thing to go and the first thing to return. There are many cases where patients were actually able to hear others talking to them in their rooms.
(Rodney looks sceptical.)
McKAY: And were these comas also caused by nanites invading people's bodies, hmm?
BECKETT: No, Rodney, but there are indications that she's thinking.
SHEPPARD: You mean dreaming.
BECKETT: More than that. Her mind is extremely active for someone in a coma. Her E.E.G. reads almost as if she were going about her daily life, which suggests she may well be able to hear us.
(John looks down at Elizabeth.)
SHEPPARD: What the hell are they doing to her?
BECKETT: I wish I knew. The immune-boosting drugs are having no effect.
SHEPPARD: Aggressive little bastards.
(Carson, who was looking at a screen, suddenly turns his head and gazes at nothing as if lost in thought. Rodney notices this.)
BECKETT (snapping out of it): What?
McKAY: Well, it's that look. That's the same look I get when I have a brilliant idea.
SHEPPARD: How would you know how you looked?
McKAY: ‘Cause it's happened more than once in front of a mirror, OK? (He turns back to Carson.) Carson, what is it?
BECKETT: I don't know about brilliant, but it just might ... Excuse me.
(He hurries away.)
McKAY: What are you doing?
(He hurries after him. John waits until they're out of the room and he's alone with Elizabeth, then turns to her.)
SHEPPARD: You know, if Carson's right and you can hear me, I suppose I should say something profound. (He pauses for a long time.) OK, I'm not so good at profound, but you should know we're doing everything we can to get you through this.
ELIZABETH'S HOUSE. Elizabeth walks into her bathroom, opens a bottle of pills and shakes a couple out into her hand. She looks up into the mirror, only to find that the reflection of her face is completely blank and featureless. Her eyes are just shallow depressions with skin over them, her eyebrows are gone, her nostrils are covered with skin and her mouth is missing altogether. She backs away in horror, putting her hands over her eyes and dropping the bottle of pills at the same time. The pills spill out all over the tiled floor. Gasping in terror, she reluctantly moves her hands, opens her eyes and looks into the mirror. Her face is back to normal.
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. John continues talking to Elizabeth.
SHEPPARD: These, these nanites, I don't know what they're putting you through, I don't know what they're doing to you, but ... don't let ‘em get to you.
ELIZABETH'S BATHROOM. Still breathing quickly from her fright, Elizabeth bends down to the floor to start picking up the pills.
SHEPPARD: We're doing everything we can to bring you back, but you've got to do your part. You've gotta fight this.
ELIZABETH'S BATHROOM. Elizabeth picks up the pills and tosses them down the toilet. She opens a second bottle of pills, empties the contents into the toilet, then flushes it.
HOSPITAL. FLETCHER'S OFFICE.
FLETCHER: I'm sure this is just a result of the adjustment I made to your medications. I think I may have dialled them back too far. It's all a question of balance.
(He writes on a notepad. Elizabeth, sitting on the other side of the desk and looking a little lost, now looks up at him sharply.)
WEIR: That's what General O'Neill said.
FLETCHER (looking up from his pad): Hmm? Yes, well, he's right. (He looks back down at his pad.) Don't worry. We'll get you back to normal.
NIGHT TIME. ELIZABETH'S HOUSE. Lying in bed, Elizabeth wakes up at the sound of John's voice.
SHEPPARD'S VOICE (echoing): Elizabeth.
(She sits up in bed. A male figure is silhouetted in the open doorway. Elizabeth gasps.)
WEIR: What do you want?
(The figure turns and walks away. Nervously, she gets out of bed and goes to investigate. She walks across the living room to a closed door on the other side. Hesitating for several seconds, she eventually reaches out and pulls the door open. The door is filled with the event horizon of an active wormhole. She stares at it, her face full of hope, then starts to walk towards it. Before she can reach it, however, a hand claps down onto her shoulder and the two orderlies from the hospital seize her.)
WEIR: No! Wait! No!
(The men wrestle her down onto the floor.)
WEIR: Let go of me! No!
(One of the orderlies pulls the cap off a syringe with his teeth and injects her in the arm. As the drug starts to take effect, Elizabeth stares at the event horizon in despair.)
HOSPITAL ROOM. Elizabeth regains consciousness and finds herself back in her hospital bed. She sighs.
O'NEILL (offscreen): Hey.
(Elizabeth looks round to see Jack, in his dress blues, leaning against the window ledge beside her. She sits up.)
O'NEILL: How're you feelin'?
WEIR: Why am I back here?
O'NEILL: They're worried. Frankly, so am I.
(Elizabeth slams her hand down on the bed in irritation.)
O'NEILL: Look, obviously, I've been pushing you a little hard on this treaty thing.
WEIR: No. I feel fine.
O'NEILL: Well, you're not. You're gonna be here until you get better. (He smiles at her sympathetically, then leaves the room.)
ATLANTIS. Carson and Rodney walk into the Infirmary where John, Teyla and Ronon are waiting.
McKAY: OK. We think we've found a way to uncouple the nanite cells from Elizabeth's cells.
BECKETT (indignantly): “We”?
McKAY: We create a distraction.
(He holds up a small cylinder, smiling smugly. Carson gingerly takes it from him and carefully puts it down on a nearby trolley.)
BECKETT: It finally occurred to me why I wasn't having any success ...
McKAY (talking over him): What were the nanites originally designed to do?
DEX: Fight the Wraith.
McKAY: Exactly. So that's what we'll get them to do now.
BECKETT: We think by implanting a small amount of Wraith tissue into Doctor Weir's body ...
McKAY: It's like a tumour.
BECKETT: Aye, a small tumour, yes -- the nanite cells will essentially ...
McKAY (talking over him again): ... will attack it. They have to -- it's what they are programmed to do, which will draw them away from Elizabeth's cells, effectively unbinding them.
BECKETT: It will only last a few seconds or so, mind you, before the nanites attack the Wraith tissue and return their focus to Doctor Weir's cells.
McKAY: Yeah, but that's all we need: momentary distraction to draw them away from her so we can zap ‘em with the E.M. pulse.
(John looks nervous.)
SHEPPARD: OK. Uh, let's do it.
(Rodney makes a pleased sound, snatches up the cylinder and heads off with it. Carson chases after him.)
BECKETT: Rodney, come here ...
HOSPITAL REC ROOM. Sitting alone at a table in her bathrobe, Elizabeth has just finished a game of Solitaire with a pack of playing cards. She gathers the cards up and starts to deal again. Turning the first card over, she lays it face up on the table, then stares at it in shock. Instead of a normal playing card face, it is a Stargate symbol. She turns over the next card in the deck. It's an ordinary six of spades. She lays it face down on the table next to the first card, then lays down the next five cards face down in the normal Solitaire layout. Going back to the left side of the cards, she turns over the next card and lays it face up on the second card. Again, it has a Stargate symbol. She deals the rest of that row face down, then turns over another card -- yet again it's a Stargate symbol. She continues to deal and each time the card which she turns face up has a Gate symbol on it until there are seven symbols showing. She turns over one more card and lays it below the others. It's the Earth Point of Origin symbol. Elizabeth puts the rest of the pack down and stares at the cards in amazement.
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. Inside the isolation tent, Carson -- wearing a Hazmat suit -- applies a dressing to a small wound in Elizabeth's lower leg where the Wraith tissue has been implanted. Outside the tent, Rodney is finishing connecting up an electromagnetic pulse generator.
SHEPPARD: Wait a minute. Aren't we supposed to turn off all Earth-based equipment in the room before we do this?
McKAY: The E.M. pulse will be directed through the scanner, so the other equipment should be fine.
FLETCHER'S OFFICE. Elizabeth is sitting at Fletcher's desk, drawing the eight Gate symbols on a notepad.
WEIR: I keep seeing these symbols -- eight of them.
(Fletcher is sitting on the other side of the desk and glances up briefly at Jack O'Neill who is standing near Elizabeth.)
FLETCHER (to Elizabeth): Do they mean something to you?
WEIR: This is the dialling sequence for the Stargate ... (she looks up at Jack) ... from Earth to Atlantis.
O'NEILL: Dialling sequence like a phone number?
(Elizabeth stands up.)
WEIR: Look, I know you think I'm delusional, but I can't shake the overpowering feeling that something, or someone, is trying to communicate with me.
FLETCHER: And what are they trying to say?
WEIR: That Atlantis is real, and that I have to get back there.
O'NEILL: And ... so we're the fantasy?
(Elizabeth looks at him and then at Fletcher. Despite their sceptical expressions, she carries on resolutely.)
O'NEILL: Y'know, I don't mind being fantasised about occasionally, but c'mon. We're right here.
FLETCHER (pointing to the symbols on the notepad): How would you get there?
WEIR: Go to Stargate Command.
O'NEILL: So now you just wanna waltz into NORAD, is that it?
WEIR (angrily): I know what you told me! (More calmly) But I also know what I feel. (She leans down to Fletcher.) Atlantis is real, and I will get back there.
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. Carson, now out of the tent and with his Hazmat helmet removed, looks at a screen.
BECKETT: And it's working.
(John walks over to another screen and looks at it with Ronon. The screen shows the nanites swarming from all other parts of Elizabeth's body toward the Wraith tissue in her leg.)
DEX: They're moving fast.
BECKETT: Aye. Get ready with the E.M. pulse.
McKAY: I'm ready on your mark.
BECKETT (watching his screen): And ... now!
(Rodney activates the generator and a white pulse comes out of the scanner, which is over the area of Elizabeth's lower legs. The screens fritz and go black.)
SHEPPARD: I thought you said that, that ...
(The screens come back on again. The one showing Elizabeth's body now seems clear of red dots.)
TEYLA: It worked!
McKAY (smiling): Carson, you might be an absolute ...
BECKETT: Oh no.
(He is looking at his screen which shows a close-up scan of Elizabeth's brain. There are red dots all through the image.)
BECKETT: We didn't get them all.
TEYLA: How is that possible?
BECKETT: I don't bloody know.
McKAY: They've been using organic material to replicate, which has rendered them immune to the E.M. pulse.
DEX: So now what?
BECKETT: They've started replicating again.
(We see the brain scan screen. In the few seconds that have passed, the number of red dots has increased dramatically.)
HOSPITAL. Elizabeth comes out of the bathroom, only to find Fletcher and an orderly waiting outside for her.
FLETCHER: You spit out your pills again, didn't you?
(Elizabeth turns to go the other way down the corridor, only to find a second orderly blocking her path.)
FLETCHER: You disappoint me, Elizabeth.
WEIR (turning back to face him): The pills are not gonna help me.
FLETCHER: Not if you won't let them. You leave me no other choice.
(The orderlies seize her arms.)
WEIR: No -- what are you doing?
SHORTLY AFTERWARDS. The orderlies throw Elizabeth down on a gurney and strap her arms to the sides.
(The orderlies step away as Fletcher walks over and looks down at her.)
WEIR (pleading): Don't do this.
(Fletcher picks up two leads and a nurse walks over and squeezes gel onto them. Electricity whines into the leads. He looks down at Elizabeth.)
FLETCHER: This will hurt.
(Elizabeth gazes at the ceiling in despair, her lower lip trembling as she braces herself.)
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. The full body scan screen shows that the nanites have spread from Elizabeth's head down into her chest.
TEYLA: What do we do now?
SHEPPARD: Zap her again. Keep it up until they're gone.
BECKETT: A significant number of nanites have migrated into the arteries that supply blood flow to the higher functions of her brain.
DEX: They're telling us they can kill her if they want to.
BECKETT (turning to someone offscreen): Nurse, switch over to one hundred percent oxygen, stat, and start her on norepinephrine, five mics per minute. (He explains this to the others.) Reducing blood flow to those parts of her brain will put her into a state of cerebral hypoxia.
TEYLA: What will that do?
McKAY: Render her essentially brain dead, which makes no sense.
SHEPPARD (thoughtfully): Unless she's fighting it. (The others look at him, confused.) It's the only thing that makes sense. The Replicators see us as organic machines. They're trying to take control of the machine they're in.
BECKETT: You mean replace Elizabeth's consciousness?
SHEPPARD: Maybe when we zapped her with the E.M.P., we killed enough of them to even out the odds -- gave her a fighting chance to stop ‘em.
McKAY: Uh, reality check. There are microscopic robots in her brain. How does she fight that?
SHEPPARD (to Carson): You said her mind was active, like she was thinking, reacting, living her life. What if this was the only way they could get to her? What if they were trying to force her to give up?
TEYLA: A battle of wills.
BECKETT: Her neural activity supports Colonel Sheppard's hypothesis, Rodney.
McKAY: So, what, we can't do anything?
BECKETT: I can increase the oxygen levels in her blood, give her a little more time, but, yes -- she's on her own.
SHEPPARD: No. She's not. (He turns, walks over to the tent and looks in at Elizabeth.) You're not alone, Elizabeth. We're right here with you. You have to fight this.
HOSPITAL. Still strapped to the gurney, and now with a rubber bung in her mouth to stop her biting her tongue, Elizabeth sees the faceless man standing on the other side of a frosted window on the other side of the room. John's voice echoes in her head.
SHEPPARD'S VOICE (echoing): Fight this ... fight this.
(Whimpering with the effort, Elizabeth tears her hands free of the restraints. Sitting up quickly, she kicks out at the orderly at the foot of the bed, sending him crashing into the other one, then jumps up and races to the door. Looking down the corridor, she sees her mystery man standing at one end, silhouetted against a window behind him. She turns and runs towards him as he disappears around the corner. Reaching the end of the corridor and turning the corner, she sees him turn and walk into an elevator. She runs towards the elevator but stops just before she reaches it, afraid. Hearing running feet behind her, she turns and sees Fletcher and the orderlies running towards her. She backs up and runs into the elevator, only to find nobody inside. As the running feet draw closer, she presses a button on the panel and the doors begin to close. Fletcher and his men reach the elevator and grab for the doors, just too late to stop them closing completely. As the elevator begins to move, Elizabeth leans against the back wall and closes her eyes in relief.)
(The elevator stops and the doors open. Instead of the hospital, however, Elizabeth sees the corridors of Stargate Command. She steps out hesitantly, then looks to her left and starts to hurry along the corridor. She turns a few corners, then Jack O'Neill strolls into view behind her.)
O'NEILL: Doctor Weir.
(Elizabeth turns and looks at him.)
O'NEILL (walking slowly towards her): It's OK. You're safe now.
WEIR: Where am I?
O'NEILL: Stargate Command. It's OK. Follow me.
(He turns and starts to walk away. Elizabeth begins to follow him, but then John's voice speaks in her mind.)
SHEPPARD'S VOICE (echoing): Elizabeth.
(Elizabeth turns and looks down the corridor. Her mystery man is standing at the end, his face still not visible.)
SHEPPARD'S VOICE (echoing): Don't listen to them.
O'NEILL (turning back to face her): What's wrong?
(The man turns and walks away.)
SHEPPARD'S VOICE (echoing): This way.
(Elizabeth turns to look at Jack again as he slowly walks towards her.)
O'NEILL: I'm not going to hurt you.
WEIR: The hell you aren't.
(She turns and runs after the other man. Turning the corner, she sees that the man has disappeared again, but she keeps on running. Suddenly two SFs appear, blocking her way. They drop to one knee and aim their rifles at her. Elizabeth turns and starts to run back the way she just came, only for two more SFs to run around the corner and move towards her, also aiming their rifles at her.)
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. The team is looking at the screen showing the full body scan. Carson sighs and turns to the others.
BECKETT: They've begun to spread faster. We're losing her.
SHEPPARD: Not yet we're not.
(Too fast for anyone to stop him, he moves to the isolation tent and unzips it.)
McKAY: What're you doing?
(John hurries over to the bed and puts both his hands on Elizabeth's arm.)
McKAY: What, are you crazy? She could infect you!
STARGATE COMMAND CORRIDORS.
SHEPPARD'S VOICE (echoing): Elizabeth?
(Elizabeth turns back towards the kneeling SFs and sees John -- his face visible for the first time -- standing behind them.)
SHEPPARD: You've been infected by nanites. They're trying to take control of your mind and body.
(Back in the Atlantis Infirmary, John is speaking quietly to her.)
SHEPPARD: Don't let them do it.
(In the S.G.C. corridors, John continues talking.)
SHEPPARD: You have to fight ‘em. So fight.
(Behind her, Jack walks up behind the other two SFs.)
(Elizabeth turns to face him.)
O'NEILL: You have to come with us. I'm sorry.
SHEPPARD: You know which way you have to go.
(Elizabeth turns to face John again.)
SHEPPARD (quietly, firmly): Run.
(Elizabeth turns and glances at Jack for a moment, then turns and starts to run towards the kneeling SFs. John has disappeared. The SFs fire repeatedly at her but despite their point-blank range no bullets hit her. As she gets closer to them they rise off their knees but she barges straight through them, sending them both tumbling to the ground.)
ATLANTIS INFIRMARY. As John stands with his hands on Elizabeth's arm, a medic in Hazmat hurries into the tent.
BECKETT: Get him out of there!
(The medic pulls John away from the bed and bundles him out of the tent as Carson zips it up again.)
BECKETT: Put him into isolation and run a scan immediately.
S.G.C. Elizabeth runs into the Control Room and goes over to the front console. She puts her hand on the palm scanner, then starts to type. The Gate begins to dial, then kawhooshes. Elizabeth runs down into the Gateroom and starts to run up the ramp, only to stop as Jack appears as if from nowhere and steps into her path just in front of the event horizon.
O'NEILL: I can't let you go.
WEIR: You're not General O'Neill.
(Jack morphs into Doctor Fletcher.)
FLETCHER: Elizabeth, listen to me.
(Elizabeth points at the event horizon behind him.)
WEIR: You see that? That's the Stargate, and yes, leaving is exactly what I plan to do.
FLETCHER: I won't let you go.
WEIR: You can't stop me.
(Fletcher morphs again -- this time into Niam.)
NIAM: On the contrary. I already have. I made your friend disappear, haven't I? (Elizabeth stares at him.) That's right. He can't help you now. And you can't possibly get past me. So you see ... you've lost.
(Resolutely, Elizabeth braces herself, steps forward and walks straight through Niam, who disintegrates into tiny crystals that fall to the floor. She walks into the event horizon ...
... and opens her eyes to find herself lying in bed in the Atlantis Infirmary. She looks around and sees Carson, Ronon, Rodney and Teyla smiling at her outside the isolation tent.)
WEIR: Where am I?
TEYLA: The Infirmary. How are you feeling?
WEIR: I'm back in Atlantis.
(The others look puzzled.)
BECKETT (gently): You never left.
(Elizabeth smiles, gazing around the room in relief.)
NIGHT TIME. John walks into the Control Room and goes across to Elizabeth, who is standing with her back to him on the balcony facing the Gateroom, holding something in her hands.
SHEPPARD: Still up, huh?
(Elizabeth turns to face him.)
WEIR: Oh, hey. (She smiles.) Yeah, I wasn't all that keen to go back to sleep just yet.
WEIR: I'm glad to see you've been released from quarantine.
SHEPPARD: Yeah. Well, I guess the nanites were too focussed on you to spread to me.
WEIR: I now realise just how insidious they really are. (She shakes her head.) I mean, if such a small number of them could do that to me ...
SHEPPARD: Let's just take it as a win right now.
WEIR: Alright. Still, I can't believe I was only out for five hours.
SHEPPARD: Felt longer, huh?
WEIR: Yes. A lifetime.
SHEPPARD: Well, it's good to have you back in the real world. ... At least, I think it's the real world ... I could be infected right now, which makes me the one ...
WEIR: John ... don't.
(He smiles at her, then walks away. Elizabeth watches him go, then looks down at what she's holding, running her fingers over her father's pocket watch.)