Summary | Production | Transcript | Fan Reviews

The crew organize a desperate rescue mission after a predatory creature attacks an offworld team and takes two people captive.

WRITTEN BY: Joseph Mallozzi & Paul Mullie
DIRECTED BY: Andy Mikita
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Transcript by Callie Sullivan

FOREST PLANET. In a forest on an alien world, a team from Destiny has set up a temporary camp. Matthew Scott, Lisa Park, Ronald Greer and Vanessa James are standing together not far away, looking at a group of creatures grazing nearby. A Kino is flying above their heads and giving them a better view of what the creatures look like.

SCOTT: Wow. Space deer!

PARK: They're beautiful.

GREER: And they're gonna look even more beautiful slow-roasted and served up with a side of Becker's mash.

PARK: You're not serious!

GREER: Uh, and how exactly would you cook 'em?

PARK (indignantly): I wouldn't! I'm a vegetarian!

GREER (shocked): No!

JAMES: For the past ten months we have all been vegetarian! I am dyin' for a steak!

SCOTT: I could use a steak.

PARK: No, you guys can't kill those creatures - and this has nothing to do with being a vegetarian. I mean, we don't know anything about them. They could be intelligent.

SCOTT: Ah, we just saw one of 'em eat its own vomit. How smart can they be?!

(Tamara Johansen walks over and calls out to them.)

JOHANSEN: Guys! I could use some help over here!

(Greer turns to Lisa.)

GREER: All right, look. I'll tell you what.

(He points towards the deer.)

GREER: If they can give me one good reason why I shouldn't eat them, I won't.

(Matt and Vanessa grin at each other.)

GREER (to Lisa): But it'd better be a good one, because I am mighty hungry.

(He turns to Matt.)

GREER: Lieutenant?

SCOTT: Let's do it.

(They stroll away as Vanessa laughs. Lisa watches them go with a sour look on her face.)

PARK: Not cool.

(The boys creep forward until they're closer to the deer, then stop, kneel down and brace their rifles on a fallen tree. Greer looks through his telescopic sight at one of the creatures. They do look a lot like deer on Earth, although their hides are a piebald grey and orange colour and there are small bony ridges along their spines. Greer has a clear shot at one of them, but after a moment he raises his head away from the rifle. Scott looks round at him, assuming that he doesn't have a good shot.)

SCOTT: What me to take it?

GREER: No, no. I got it.

(He lowers his head to the rifle and looks through the sight again. Just then the deer's heads come up and, startled by something, they gallop away.)

GREER: Damn!

SCOTT: The heck happened?

GREER: Somethin' must have spooked 'em.

SCOTT: We've got plenty of time. Wanna go after 'em?

GREER: Hell yeah.

(They both stand up and begin to move forward, but stop again as something roars ominously from very close by.)

GREER: What was that?

SCOTT: Hang on.

(He pulls the remote out of his pocket and activates the Kino to send it off to look around. Watching the Kino footage, he continues to walk forward. On the screen, something large and grey jumps up in front of the Kino and knocks it, sending it spinning. By fluke, its camera turns towards Scott just as the large grey something crashes into him and sends him flying to crash to the ground several feet away. Nearby, Greer raises his rifle and aims at the something as it turns towards him.)

SCOTT: Shoot! Shoot it!

(Greer aims right towards the something's face but again hesitates. That is all that the something needs and it charges forward, knocks the marine aside and rushes onwards.)

DESTINY. Some time later, Scott and Greer are showing the footage from the Kino to Everett Young and Chloe Armstrong. The something large and grey jumps up in front of the Kino and knocks it, sending it spinning. When the camera settles, it shows Greer aiming towards the creature offscreen and then hesitating rather than firing. The something roars and Scott - also offscreen - calls out.

SCOTT: Shoot it!

(The something continues to roar, then bumps into the Kino which is nudged away and so misses the attack on Greer but just catches him tumbling to the ground. Again Scott calls out.)

SCOTT: It's headin' for the camp!

(The footage is switched off and Greer turns to Young.)

GREER: By the time we got there, it was gone.

ARMSTRONG: Was anybody hurt?

SCOTT: No fatalities, but plenty of injuries - and two missing: Reynolds and T.J.

CORRIDOR. Shortly afterwards, Scott and Greer are following their commander along the corridor.

SCOTT: Permission to go after them, sir.

YOUNG: Permission denied.

SCOTT: Sir, I know things may look bad, but there is still a chance that T.J. and Reynolds could be alive down there.

YOUNG: Which is why we need to find them as fast as possible. I'm gonna need you here, Lieutenant. While I'm gone, you're in charge. You got a problem with that?

SCOTT (sighing unhappily): No, sir.

STORE ROOM. Eli Wallace is looking around the room and has found a crate which he appears to find interesting. He goes over to it and pulls the lid off, revealing what appear to be Ancient spare parts inside. As he looks down at them, Adam Brody comes to the doorway.

BRODY: Hey! What are you doin'?

WALLACE: Checking to see what's inside. Why? What does it look like I'm doin'?

(Adam jerks his head back towards the corridor.)

BRODY: Come on.

(Eli follows him out.)

WALLACE: I thought the whole point of exploring unexplored sections of the ship was to ... well, explore them.

BRODY: We are.

WALLACE: Not really.

BRODY: Well, what can I say? Rush wants us to take a cautious approach.

WALLACE: Who cares what Rush thinks? He's not our boss.

BRODY (snorting): You tell him that.

WALLACE: I will!

BRODY: No you won't.

WALLACE: I'm not afraid of him.

RUSH: Afraid of whom?

(Eli and Adam have just turned a corner and Nicholas Rush is standing a few yards down it, tinkering with the components inside a wall panel.)

WALLACE: "Who." I think it's "who." "Afraid of who."

(Nick looks round at him flatly.)

RUSH: Afraid not.

(Eli frowns, mouthing to himself. Adam shines his flashlight at the nearby closed doors.)

BRODY: Hey, what have we got here?

RUSH: This is one of the last rooms in this section.

(He fits the cover back over the wall panel.)

WALLACE (looking bored): I'm guessing more Ancient containers.

(Nick pushes the wall button and the doors slide open. The boys stand and stare at the sight which greets them, and anyone who has seen "Star Trek: The Next Generation" or "Star Trek: Voyager" promptly yells, "Borg alcoves!")

ARMOURY. Scott is watching as Young, James, Greer and Corporal Marsden are gearing up ready to go back to the planet.

JAMES: I wanna see them rescued as much as anyone, but we have to consider the possibility that they may already be dead.

SCOTT: We swept the area. If they were dead, why didn't we find the bodies?

JAMES: Maybe the creature dragged them away, took them somewhere it wouldn't be disturbed.

(She picks up a rifle and turns to the others again.)

JAMES: Neither of them are responding to radio communications.

SCOTT: Maybe they're unconscious, or the radios were lost or damaged. I don't know.

JAMES: All I'm sayin' is: we can hope for the best as long as we're prepared for the worst.

YOUNG: You're right. Why don't you guys meet us at the Gate?

(Vanessa, Marsden and Scott leave the room. Young waits until they're out of earshot before he turns to Greer.)

YOUNG: You mind, uh, telling me what happened back there on the planet? You had the shot; you didn't take it. Why not?

(Greer raises his eyes to him.)

GREER: I don't know.

YOUNG: If it's a moment of indecision, just one of those things, then you can drop it. But if there is a problem, you need to find out what it is and you need to fix it, fast.

GREER: Yes, sir.

(Holding his gaze for a moment, he then turns on his heel and walks briskly away.)

STASIS CHAMBER. Nick and Eli are walking around the room looking at the various open alcoves set into the wall.

WALLACE: Stasis pods?

RUSH: Yeah. Obviously designed for lengthy intergalactic journeys.

(Adam comes back into the room.)

BRODY: We've got multiple rooms exactly like this one going both ways.

RUSH: It's fascinating.

WALLACE: That's a bit of an understatement. This is huge!

RUSH (nodding): Agreed.

(He draws in a sharp breath.)

RUSH: OK, let's leave it for now. Let's go.

(The other two stare at him in surprise as he starts to leave the room.)

WALLACE: What?! You can't be serious!

RUSH (turning back to them): Well, given recent events, it might be wise to check over the ship's data on this compartment before proceeding.

(He turns and walks away. The other two look at each other as if to say, "OK, what did he do with the real Rush?")

FOREST. The retrieval team is making its way through the woods, looking carefully at the ground as they go. Young stops.

YOUNG: Sergeant, hold up. I think ... I think we lost its trail. We should double back.

GREER: We need to keep moving forward.

YOUNG: Well, not if we're headed the wrong way.

GREER (urgently): Back the way we came is the wrong way. If we keep moving forward, we'll pick up the trail again! Trust me!

(Young looks at him closely for a moment, then turns to James and Marsden.)

YOUNG: You guys check out the area; see if you can spot any tracks.

(As the two of them move off in different directions, he turns back towards Greer.)

YOUNG: Sergeant. What's up?

GREER: We're up against the clock here, sir.

YOUNG: Which is why we can't afford to make any more mistakes. Listen to me: I know this is tearing you apart, but what's done is done; and you let guilt start dictating your actions, you're just askin' for trouble. I don't know - maybe you needed more time to recuperate after surgery.

GREER: I'm fine, sir.

YOUNG: Then get your head on straight.

(He turns and walks away, calling the others to him.)

YOUNG: James. Marsden.

(Vanessa turns and looks with concern at Greer as he turns away from his commander, glaring out into the forest. She walks past him, following the other two as they head back the way they've just come, and after a while Greer unwillingly turns back himself.)

DESTINY MESS. Scott walks in. At one of the tables, Varro and his Lucian Alliance colleagues are sitting quietly, eating a meal. Varro watches Scott as he walks across the room, then gets up and goes over to him as he helps himself to a mug of water. They speak quietly so that the others in the room can't hear.

VARRO: Any updates from the planet?

SCOTT: They've, uh, lost the trail; they're doubling back.

VARRO: I'd like to volunteer to help with this rescue op.

SCOTT: Much appreciated, but Colonel Young and his team are more than capable of seeing this through.

VARRO: With all due respect, no, they're not. They have the training but they lack the necessary experience. Me and my people have been hunting most of our lives. We can track this animal for you. We could do it better, faster than anyone you've got down there on the ground right now.

(Scott looks thoughtful as he mulls it over.)

VARRO: When this is over, you're gonna wanna know that you did everything in your power to save them, right?

INFIRMARY. Chloe is sitting by Lisa's bedside.

PARK: Well, it happened so fast. One minute I was helping to catalogue plant samples, and the next I was on the ground and everyone was screaming.

(Dale Volker comes in and hurries over to Lisa's bed.)

VOLKER: Hey. I just heard.

(Doctor Morrison is lying on top of a bed nearby.)

MORRISON: Come to check up on us, huh?

(Dale turns awkwardly towards him.)

VOLKER: Yeah, yeah, I came to check up on you. Both. (He turns back towards Lisa.) How are you?

MORRISON (putting the back of his hand dramatically to his forehead): Ahh, I'm in constant pain. I think my ankle's broken. Every time I move ...

VOLKER (smiling falsely at him): Well, hang in there. (Again he turns to Lisa.) How 'bout you?

PARK: According to the medical scan, a cracked rib.

MORRISON (anguished): Ha! I should be so lucky!

VOLKER (trying to ignore him): How do you, uh ... how do you treat a cracked rib?

ARMSTRONG: You don't. Speaking from personal experience - snowboarding accident - you just take it easy; it'll heal itself in about a month.

VOLKER: A month?

(He looks at Lisa worriedly.)

VOLKER: OK. Is there anything you need? Anything I can do?

MORRISON: Yeah, could you take off my sock?

(Dale turns towards him furiously but keeps his voice low.)

VOLKER: Are you serious, dude?

MORRISON: My foot's swelling up!

ARMSTRONG: I'll get that for you.

(Standing up, she walks past Dale, patting his arm to calm him down, and heads towards Morrison's bedside. Dale walks closer to Lisa.)

PARK: Thanks for coming by.

(Dale sits down on the bedside, resting his hand against hers.)

VOLKER: Yeah, it was nothin'. Rush had me up on the Bridge running diagnostics.

PARK (taking his hand): I really appreciate it.

VOLKER: Yeah, I, uh ...

(He looks round awkwardly. Chloe looks around and sees the two of them holding hands, and turns away again diplomatically.)

VOLKER: ... just wanted to make sure you were all right.

PLANET. At the edge of the forest is a mountain range, and partway up the hills is the entrance to a large cave. Inside the cave lies T.J., her face bloody. She is unconscious but begins to revive as she hears a man's voice.

REYNOLDS: Lieutenant. Lieutenant!

(She slowly opens her eyes and sees the young corporal staring down at her.)

REYNOLDS: Oh, thank God.

(Groaning, she raises her head and puts her fingers to a large wound on her forehead before looking around.)

JOHANSEN: Where are we?

REYNOLDS: I don't know.

JOHANSEN: How did we get here?

REYNOLDS: The thing that attacked the camp - it took us here. We must have lost our sidearms in the commotion; your radio too. I've got mine but it's damaged.

(He shows his radio to her. She gets out her flashlight and stands up, looking around.)

JOHANSEN: We have to get out of here.

(The young man tries to stand, but then groans.)

REYNOLDS: I can't put any weight on my leg. I think it might be broken.

(She turns back to him, kneels down beside him and gently puts her hands onto his leg. Instantly he cringes and grunts in pain.)

JOHANSEN: It could just be a fracture.

(She stands up and starts looking around the cave again.)

REYNOLDS: If this thing wanted to kill us, we'd be dead already, so I figured that's a good thing, right? It wants us alive.

(T.J. stops as she spots something unnerving in the beam of her flashlight. She steps closer and looks at the sight with dread.)

JOHANSEN: It's saving us.

REYNOLDS: Saving us? From what?

JOHANSEN (swallowing nervously): Not from anything.

(She gazes down at the pile of animal bones that have been chewed clean.)

JOHANSEN: It's saving us for later.

FOREST. Greer is pacing anxiously as he and the rest of Young's group wait.

GREER: I don't like it.

YOUNG: Yeah, well, you don't have to like it. Just pretend you do - at least until we get our people back.

JAMES: Here they come.

(They all turn and watch as Varro arrives with his Alliance colleagues. Greer calls out to them.)

GREER: It's about time!

VARRO: We just wanted to check out the campsite.

YOUNG: We appreciate your help.

VARRO: Don't mention it. We're all in this together, right?

(Greer glowers at him as if he couldn't disagree more. Varro looks at him for a moment, then looks around to his female colleague, Tasia, and jerks his head to indicate that she's in charge. She in turn gestures to her other colleagues and they spread out around the area.)

VARRO: The fact that there's no significant blood at the campsite is a good sign. It suggests the creature wanted them alive.


VARRO: Probably likes its meat fresh.

(He looks around to include the others.)

VARRO: Which means we've gotta move quickly. The sooner we locate them, the better, because this rescue op has the potential to turn into a recovery mission real fast.

(Young nods his agreement and understanding. Varro looks skywards, where the lighting levels indicate that the sun is beginning to set.)

VARRO: Looks like it's going to get dark soon.

TASIA: Here.

(Varro goes over to where Tasia has squatted down and is looking at the ground.)

TASIA: Partial print there ...

(She points to a spot nearby, then points a little further away,)

TASIA: ... and there, heading off in that direction.

(She stands up and walks off that way. Greer throws an unhappy look at James, but then they and the others follow the trackers.)

DESTINY. Eli and Adam are still exploring.

WALLACE: You know, we finally unseal a new section, make the biggest discovery aboard this ship since the Bridge, and now we're supposed to ignore it because Rush says so?

BRODY: Well, he wants to be cautious.

WALLACE (stopping): Since when is Rush cautious?

BRODY (turning back to him): Well, I guess having your consciousness trapped in a simulation'll do that to you.

WALLACE: Screw this.

(He turns and heads back the way they just came.)

BRODY: Where are you going?

WALLACE: To check out the stasis pods.

(He turns and walks backwards for a few yards, looking at Adam.)

WALLACE: And don't tell on me, all right?

(Adam turns back the way they were going and shines his flashlight down the corridor. Either he's tempted by Eli's idea or he's too chicken to go on alone, but he turns back and chases after Eli.)

BRODY: Wait for me.

PLANET. In the cave, Reynolds looks up at T.J. nervously as she heads towards the entrance.

REYNOLDS: Wait-wait-wait-wait, where are you going?

JOHANSEN: Relax, Corporal!

(She trots up to the entrance and out onto a ledge outside. Looking around, she can see that they're a long way above the forest, and it looks like it's a steep climb even to get down to the next level, let alone the ground. From inside the cave, Reynolds calls out to her.)

REYNOLDS: How's it look?

JOHANSEN: Not good.

(And then it looks even less not good as the creature comes into view, prowling around on a level patch of rock about thirty feet below her. It's obscured by trees and bushes in the way, but from what little can be seen, it seems to be a cross between a giant lizard and one of the big cats. It walks on all fours, is very muscular and has a massively long tail.)

JOHANSEN: That thing is still down there.

(She turns back into the cave and trots back to Reynolds as he tries to limp across the floor.)

JOHANSEN: It's guarding its lair. And you're in no condition to make a run for it.

(She goes across to him and helps him to sit down on the floor again. He grabs at her in panic.)

REYNOLDS: Lieutenant, please, I know you stand a better chance out there without me but I need ...


(He stops babbling and stares at her.)

JOHANSEN: I'm not leaving you behind. And when the time comes, I'm going to need your help, so I need you to calm down. You need to get it together, OK? Can you do that?

REYNOLDS: Yeah. Yeah.

(He wraps his arms around himself, trying to calm his breathing.)


(She picks up the broken radio and takes the back off it.)

DESTINY CONTROL INTERFACE ROOM. Dale checks the screen on a console and then walks across to another as Chloe comes in.

ARMSTRONG: Oh, hey. I'm just on my way to the Mess. Can I get you anything?

VOLKER: No, I'm good, thank you. Hey, how's the search going?

ARMSTRONG: Um, I don't know. I haven't heard anything since Varro and his team went down.

VOLKER: Let's hope they make the difference.

(She looks at him thoughtfully, wondering how to say what she clearly wants to say.)

ARMSTRONG: Yeah. It's times like these that really make you appreciate what you have ... who you have.

VOLKER (absently): Yeah, for sure.

(Chloe tries to press her point as she sits down on one of the wall benches behind him.)

ARMSTRONG: Its like, um, well, uh, having Matt has made such a difference, knowing he's there for me no matter what. You're really lucky to have that someone.

(Dale really isn't listening to her. She looks at him for a long moment, then presses on.)

ARMSTRONG: So, does Lisa know?

VOLKER (looking round at her): Know what?

ARMSTRONG: How you feel about her?

(His eyes widen. She stands up and walks closer.)

ARMSTRONG: I know it's probably none of my business, but I saw the way you two were together and ...

VOLKER: "We were ..." No, no, no; Lisa ... Lisa and I, we're just ... it's strictly praton ... professional, platonic, professionally platonic. We're not ...

ARMSTRONG: Um, sorry, I totally misread ...

VOLKER: Oh, no, no, it's a simple mistake. No, that-that happens, you know ... the ... sometimes.

(He looks down awkwardly. There's a long embarrassed silence.)

VOLKER: So you're going to the Mess Hall?



ARMSTRONG: It's where I'm going!


(She turns and leaves the room.)

VOLKER: Thank you!

STASIS CHAMBER. Eli is tinkering with one of the panels in between the stasis pods. Adam has gone into an open pod and is looking at a panel in there.

WALLACE: I'm just saying recent events have made me put things in perspective, like who made him de facto leader?

BRODY: He did. He was lead scientist on Icarus.

WALLACE: Yet I'm the one who solved the mystery of the ninth chevron.

BRODY: Yeah. Thanks for that(!)

(He smiles sarcastically at Eli, who gives him a wry grin.)

BRIDGE. On the Bridge, Nicholas is sitting in the command chair. There's nobody else around. As he works the console bleeps and he looks at it with interest, then calls up a particular screen which shows that there is activity in part of the Stasis Chamber. Watching the readouts, Nick smiles quirkily and sits back in his seat thoughtfully.

STASIS CHAMBER. Unaware of this, the boys in the chamber continue their investigating as they chat.

BRODY: So what are you saying? You wanna be lead scientist?

WALLACE: Nooooo! I just ... I think it's time that we all had more of a say in the decisions that are being made. I'm tired of him deciding what's best for us.

(Just then, a door begins to slide down at the front of the pod, shutting Adam inside.)

BRODY: Whoa-whoa-whoa-whoa-whoa!

WALLACE: Whoa, hold on! I ... I ...

BRODY: Hey, hey!

(The glass-fronted door reaches the ground. Adam glares out at Eli.)

BRODY: Thanks. Great. What did you do?

WALLACE: I didn't do anything. What did you ...?

BRODY: You accidentally pressed something. Now hit the "open" button.

WALLACE: Oh, 'cause there's a ...

(Looking at the panels he has been working on, he tries to see if there is an "open" button, but almost immediately there's a loud hissing sound from inside the pod. Adam looks up in horror as white mist begins to flood in from above his head.)

BRODY: Whoa-whoa-whoa-whoa-whoa!

WALLACE: I can't ...

(He looks up and sees the mist.)

WALLACE: Oh, that can't ... Not cool.

(He stares at the panel in panic as Adam throws himself against the door.)

BRODY: Hey, hey, Eli, get me out!

WALLACE: Hold on, hold on! Crap! I got it!

BRODY: Eli, what are you ...

WALLACE: Uh, uh, maybe, can we ...

(As Adam goes silent, Eli looks up and stares in horror. Adam has frozen in place in mid-sentence. Eli looks around the room awkwardly, as if expecting help to materialise out of nowhere. Somewhat surprisingly, it doesn't come.)

FOREST. NIGHT TIME. Tasia is leading the team along.

VARRO: You guys do much hunting back on Earth?

YOUNG: Not unless you count fishing.

VARRO: Well, growing up, my brother and I, we learned from my father how to hunt, kill - but the most important thing he taught us was respect for the wild.

GREER: Ain't nothin' noble about this thing. It's a monster.

VARRO: Yeah, but unlike us, animals don't know hate. All they know is fear and hunger.

TASIA: Hey, I got something here!

(She stops and looks around as Young moves forward towards her.)

TASIA: The tracks, uh ... they just stop.

(She raises her light and shines it around the nearby bushes.)

TASIA: OK, there's been a lot of movement here.

(Everybody looks around cautiously. Suddenly something bursts out of the trees nearby and charges straight at Tasia. Chaos reigns as we see mostly from the creature's point of view as it takes her down, then rapidly whirls around, grabbing, clawing and biting at the others. Someone cries out, "Get down, get down!" as one of the team fires wildly with his or her rifle. All around claws and teeth lash out and people scream as they fall to the ground. Vanessa is thrown across the clearing. As Greer turns at the sound of her cry, he too is thrown to the ground and the creature instantly turns and slams Marsden against a tree and then turns and gallops away. The entire attack has lasted about fifteen seconds and there isn't a member of the team left standing.)

(Greer raises his head and stares in shock at the sight of one of the Alliance men lying dead nearby, his throat ripped out. Nearby the creature roars and Ronald leaps to his feet, firing his rifle repeatedly in the direction of the sound for a few seconds before chasing off into the forest. He runs for a while and then trips and falls to the ground. Scrambling up, he spins around as he hears the creature roar again, but the sound is further away now. A moment later Varro makes him leap out of his skin as he grabs the sergeant from behind, spins him around and slams his back against a tree, glaring at him furiously.)

VARRO: Stop!

GREER: Get off me! We've got it on the run! Now's our chance!

(He tries to push Varro off him but the Alliance man shoves him back against the tree again.)

VARRO: The hell we do! It'll draw you out, separate you from the group, then pick you off. What the hell d'you think happened back there? It led us to that spot. It waited for us. It's smart. All this time we've been hunting it, it's been hunting us.

(Glaring at Greer to make sure that he's got the point, he turns and heads back towards the others.)

LATER. Varro finishes checking on Young, who is sitting with his back braced against a fallen tree. As he moves on to check someone else, Tasia, with a large wound on her head, paces around. At least three Alliance men are lying motionless on the ground.

(Nearby, Greer reaches down and takes a firm hold of Vanessa's hand with both of his and stares down at her.)

GREER: Are you ready?

(With her face crumpled in agony, she grits her teeth.)

JAMES: Do it!

(He twists her arm roughly, popping her shoulder back into its socket. She yelps in pain, then breathes noisily as he helps her to sit up.)

GREER: Got it?

JAMES: Yeah.

(He sits down next to her as she holds her arm gingerly and gets her breath back. He takes his cap off and looks at the blood on it while she looks around the rest of the area, then looks pointedly back at him. Finally he meets her gaze.)

GREER: What?

JAMES: Why didn't you pull that trigger? There's no predicting how someone's gonna react in a pressure situation. Panic sets in, people freeze. It happens - but not to you.

(Ron stares off into the distance.)

JAMES (softly): Something got inside your head. What?

(Finally he turns to her and answers rather reluctantly.)

GREER: I think I died.

(He widens his eyes at her as if to say, "Yes, I know that's crazy." She frowns but keeps her eyes on him, waiting. He looks away again, his face full of pain at the memory.)

GREER: After the kidney surgery, during the recovery, there was a point where I woke up ... to nothing. Couldn't hear, couldn't see, couldn't move. I was trapped in this darkness, you know, like nothing I had ever known.

JAMES (sympathetically): You were scared. That's a normal reaction.

GREER: I've done some crazy things in my day; risked my life without even giving it a second thought. No fear!

(He looks down again, then grimaces as he looks at Vanessa again.)

GREER: But now ... all I know is that darkness, and the fact that I don't ever wanna go back.

JAMES: T.J. had you under some pretty heavy sedatives for that operation. They shut you down. Your brain was probably the first thing to wake up and it just took the rest of your body a little while to catch up.

GREER: You think that's what it was.

JAMES: I can't claim to know for sure what death is, but I know in my heart it isn't that.

ELSEWHERE. Nearby, Varro is finishing stitching up a large wound just below Young's neck. The colonel gasps, his face full of shock as Varro rips the end of the suture off, then takes a few steadying breaths.

VARRO: This should do 'til you get back to the ship.

YOUNG: I'm not going back. I'm not giving up on my people.

VARRO: No-one's giving up. You've just gotta think this through. It won't take much for those stitches to open up. If you start bleeding out, then what? Sorry, but in your condition, you're a liability to us.

(Young grimaces, clearly in a great deal of pain.)

VARRO: At best, you'll just slow us down. At worst, you die. I'll get her back. You have my word.

TASIA: We need to get moving.

(She walks closer to Varro.)

TASIA: We can come back, bury the bodies later.

(Young growls in agony as Varro hauls him to his feet. He bends down to retrieve something from his pack, then straightens up and turns to Varro again.)

YOUNG: You listen to me. You bring her back safe.

(He hands him his pistol. Varro takes it and nods. Young bends and picks up his pack.)

YOUNG: All right.

(He walks towards James.)

YOUNG: Let's, uh, let's go.

DESTINY BRIDGE. Nicholas opens the doors to the Bridge and walks in. Seeing that there's nobody there, he activates his radio.

RUSH: Hello, Eli, come in?

(In the stasis chamber, Eli is still working on trying to get Adam out. He has apparently been there all night. Now he snatches his radio out of his bag, clears his throat and tries to sound nonchalant as he answers.)


RUSH: Good morning. Is Mr. Brody with you?

(Eli laughs ironically as he looks across to the frozen form of his colleague nearby.)


(Nick sits down in the command chair and calls up the schematics of the Stasis Chamber which show that one of the pods is still active.)

RUSH (into radio): You two are supposed to be in the Control Interface Room running diagnostics. Where are you?

WALLACE: We're just grabbing something to eat.

RUSH: Yeah, well, hurry up. I know it's not the most glamorous work, but it needs to be done.

WALLACE (casually): We'll finish up, be on our way.

(Deactivating his radio, he stares despairingly at Adam's frozen form. On the Bridge, Nick smiles wickedly.)

PLANET. DAYTIME. Tasia and Varro lead Greer and Marsden along. She stops at a small relatively open space.

TASIA: Here?

VARRO: This is good.

GREER: Good for what? Why are we stopping?

VARRO: We've already established this creature is smart. It sees us as a threat, so it's stalking us, and sooner or later it's gonna try to ambush us again, but this time we'll be ready for it.

(While he has been speaking, Tasia has been rummaging through her shoulder bag and now hands him one of the Lucian Alliance bombs - similar to the one that Simeon attached to Lisa's back in "Malice". Grinning at Greer, she gets another one out of her bag and they move off to position them.)

CAVE. T.J. has gathered some twigs and built them into a very small fire which she has lit.

JOHANSEN: Here we go.

(Reynolds, who has been sitting nearby staring despairingly at the floor, drags himself up onto the nearby rock ledge to get closer to the fire, manipulating his injured leg into a comfortable position. T.J. looks at her watch.)

REYNOLDS: How're we doing for time?

JOHANSEN: We've got six hours 'til Destiny jumps.

REYNOLDS: They wouldn't abandon us.

JOHANSEN: No. Not unless they think we're dead.

(She goes over to where she had left the dismantled radio and picks it up to bring it closer to the fire.)

JOHANSEN: Which is why I really need to get this radio working.

(Sitting down again, she picks up a knife and starts poking around in the back of the radio.)

DESTINY INFIRMARY. Lisa is lying asleep in bed. Dale walks in with a small bowl of fruit and stands at the foot of her bed watching her, uncertain whether to wake her or not. After a while she perhaps senses that she's being watched and wakes up. He smiles at her but she looks a bit awkward.

PARK: Were you watching me sleep?

VOLKER: No, no! No, I, no, I was just checking to see if you were ... if you were awake, which you seemed not to be, but then now ... then you are now.

(He grins. She looks at him, still a little uncomfortable.)

VOLKER: I brought you something to eat.

(He puts the bowl down on her bedside table.)

PARK: Oh, that was sweet of you.

RUSH (strolling in): Doctor Park. How're you feeling?

PARK: Uh ...

(Automatically she tries to sit up, then grimaces and puts her hand to her side, her face screwed up in pain.)

PARK: Fine, thanks.

RUSH: How're you getting on with those calculations?

PARK: Oh, yeah, I finished them.

(She hands him a notebook from the table.)

RUSH: Right.

VOLKER: I can't believe this. You're making her work? She's injured.

RUSH: Yes, her ribs, not her brain.

PARK: Dale, I asked him to give me something to do. I'm going stir crazy just sitting here.

RUSH (looking through the notebook): Good, good. See you back on the Bridge.

(He turns and strolls away.)

VOLKER: Yeah, I'm just gonna finish up with my visit and then ...

RUSH: Hey, take your time.

(He throws an amused glance over his shoulder, then leaves. Dale and Lisa look at each other awkwardly.)

PLANET. Varro places and primes the last of the explosives. Keeping watch of the surrounding area, Greer actives his radio.

GREER: Anything?

MARSDEN (over radio): Nothing.

TASIA (over radio): Not yet.

(Ronald growls suspiciously as he slowly straightens up, trying to look everywhere. He calls out to Varro.)

GREER: I got a bad feeling that this is a mistake. And while we're sitting here, that thing is putting as much distance between us as possible.

VARRO: No, the creature knows we're hunting it, so it needs to protect its lair. To do that, it has to make sure we never reach it.

GREER: Makes sense, you know, but if you're wrong about this, don't count on making it back to the ship.

VARRO: You don't think I wanna save them?

GREER: Yeah ...

(He chuckles sarcastically.)

GREER: ... I'm sure you do.

(Varro turns and looks at him.)

VARRO: You look like you've got more to say.

GREER: Well, whatever you have in mind for you and T.J., you can forget about it, you know? 'Cause that's not happening.

VARRO: Why don't we let her decide that?

(He turns and walks away as his radio activates.)

TASIA (over radio): Varro.

VARRO (into radio): Go ahead, Tasia.

TASIA: It's on the move and headed your way.

GREER: Here we go.

(He tilts his head to either side, loosening up his neck muscles as he and Varro move into positions. Nearby, the creature roars. Both of the men raise their weapons, ready.)

GREER: Come on.

(The creature growls again.)

GREER: Come on. I'm right here.

(He starts to work himself into a frenzy.)

GREER (yelling out): I'm right here!

(As the growling continues, Varro and Greer finally work out which direction it's coming from and turn to face the same way, aiming their weapons, and at last the creature comes into view over a nearby rise. It stops, roaring and watching them for a moment, then races forward. Almost immediately it triggers one of the bombs and Greer and Varro duck down as the device explodes. As the debris settles, they hurry forward just as Tasia runs into view.)

TASIA: Did you get it?

GREER: Oh yeah.

TASIA: All right. We should get moving. In a few hours it's gonna start to get dark ...

(And something grabs her from behind and hauls her rapidly out of sight. Before the men can even react to her scream, Marsden - standing a short distance to their right - is also seized and dragged away. Greer and Varro turn back to back and look around as more roaring can be heard. Varro puts in his bid for the title of this week's Mr. Obvious.)

VARRO: There are more of them out there.

LATER. The two men are making their way through the forest. Greer looks around suspiciously.

GREER: Following their trail's gotten way too easy. It's almost as if they're daring us to come after them.

VARRO: They're luring us in to finish us off.

GREER: The thing that attacked us back at the camp is bigger than the ones we're tracking now.

VARRO: These tracks are smaller. These are the babies. We're getting close to their lair. The fact that we're dealing with more than one of these things reduces our chances of finding our people alive.

GREER: Are you saying you're having second thoughts? 'Cause, you know, I can do this on my own.

VARRO: Oh no you can't. Hell, I don't even think we can do this together, but I'm gonna see this through. Besides, this close to the nest, we're past the point of no return.

CAVE. Reynolds is carving a point onto the end of a sturdy stick.

REYNOLDS: The thing's too big, too strong. I can't stand the thought of being eaten alive.

(T.J. stares at him.)

REYNOLDS: When the time comes, if I don't have the guts to do it myself ...

JOHANSEN: What are you saying, Corporal?

REYNOLDS (angrily): I'm saying I don't wanna die like that. I want you to finish me off first.

(Furious, T.J. storms over to him and grabs him by the lapels of his jacket.)

JOHANSEN: Hey, hey. You listen to me.

(She glares down into his eyes.)

JOHANSEN: Now, you have two choices. You can suck it up and walk back on the Destiny with your head held high, or you can force me to save your sorry ass and live with the shame. Is that understood?

REYNOLDS: Yes, ma'am.

(She shoves him away angrily and walks back to the fire. Picking up the radio and fixing the back onto it, she switches it on. It beeps and then starts to hiss static. She and Reynolds stare at it in amazement for a moment, then T.J. presses the Talk switch.)

JOHANSEN: Uh, this is, this is Lieutenant Johansen, over.

(She releases the button and the radio hisses static again.)

JOHANSEN (into radio): Is there anyone out there?

ELSEWHERE. Some distance away, Varro and Greer are progressing onwards.

VARRO: You remind me of someone I used to run ops with. First one into a firefight, last one to leave enemy territory. He was fearless. He ended up volunteering for what you'd call a suicide mission. He wasn't afraid. Turns out he should have been. He was wrong. In those situations when the odds are stacked against you and you're looking death in the face, it's fear that keeps you and the people around you alive.

(T.J.'s distorted voice comes over the radio.)

JOHANSEN: This is Lieutenant Johansen.

(They stop, and Greer activates his radio.)

GREER: This is Greer, over.

JOHANSEN: Sergeant?

GREER: Lieutenant! What's your situation?

JOHANSEN (running to the cave door to get better reception): Uh, Corporal Reynolds and I are in a cave on the side of a hill overlooking a ravine somewhere north of camp. The creature that attacked us - it brought us here and it appears to be guarding its territory, so approach with extreme caution. The corporal is injured and in no condition to make a run for it.

GREER: Hang tight, Lieutenant. We're coming for you.

JOHANSEN (laughing with delight): Copy.

DESTINY BRIDGE. As Nicholas sits in the centre chair, Dale hurries in, raising an apologetic hand as he makes his way to one of the front consoles.

VOLKER: Sorry. Lost track of time.

RUSH: Yeah, well, I'm not surprised. You two obviously enjoy each other's company.

VOLKER: I'm not sure if you meant anything by that, but you should know there's nothing going on between me and Park.

(Nick grins.)

RUSH: Of course not.

(Dale turns around in his seat to face him.)

VOLKER: What do you mean, "Of course not"? You ... you say it like it could never happen.

RUSH (shrugging): Well, it couldn't.

VOLKER: OK, I get it: because she's so ... (he laughs) ... attractive and I'm ... I'm not?

RUSH: No, no-no-no-no-no. Let's just say that you don't seem like the romantic type.

VOLKER: Oh, really? OK, well then, uh, what type am I?

RUSH: The good friend type, obviously. The trusted confidante. The guy who's always there with the, uh ...

(He thinks for a moment, then shrugs again.)

RUSH: ... the shoulder to cry on.

(He gets up and strolls over towards one of the side consoles.)

RUSH: And that's just life, my friend. We all have our pre-destined roles. But, you know, on the bright side, a life free of romantic entanglement ... well, it certainly benefits the pursuit of science.

(He throws a cheery grin at Dale, who smiles bitterly at him and turns back around to his own console.)

CORRIDOR. Eli is hurrying along, followed by Chloe.

ARMSTRONG: Seriously, Eli, I don't have time for this. They need me in the Infirmary. Colonel Young and Lieutenant James just got back. They're injured.

(Not slowing down, Eli leads her into the Stasis Chamber and stops just past the pod holding Adam. She stops and stares in amazement.)

ARMSTRONG: What did you do?!

WALLACE: I didn't do anything. He did this to himself. He was just in there pushing buttons ...


WALLACE: Yes. According to the monitoring system, he's fine; just ... frozen.

ARMSTRONG: Did you tell Rush?

WALLACE: Oh, no-no-no-no, and we're not going to - not yet, anyway. Just for once, I'd like to solve a problem without his help.

ARMSTRONG (looking into the pod): Eli, you have to get him out of there.

WALLACE: I know! Which is why you're here. You still have some of that residual alien knowledge, right?


WALLACE: Just do me a favour. Take a look, see if anything jumps out at you.

(He gestures her towards the panels and reluctantly she bends down and looks at them.)


PLANET. Varro and Greer reach the top of a rise and look at the mountain range at the edge of the forest, with the cave mouth very visible.

VARRO: That's gotta be it.

(They look at the cave for a long moment, then Greer turns and trots back down the rise, Varro following him. Reaching the bottom, Greer pulls his cap off and puts his hand to his head, trying to work out how to go about the rescue mission. Varro waits for a while, then makes his own suggestion while checking the magazine of his pistol.)

VARRO: I'll go first, scout out the area. If it's clear, I'll radio back.

GREER: I don't think so.

(He looks across at Varro who is carefully keeping his back turned to him.)

GREER: If you've got something to say, say it.

VARRO (turning to face him): I don't think you're up for this.

GREER (dangerously): You calling me a coward?

VARRO: No, you're not a coward, but you're second-guessing yourself and that's a problem. We don't have time for you to sort through whatever issues you're dealing with. So I'm going.

GREER (determinedly): No, I'm going.

(He steps closer, opens one of the pockets in his vest and takes something out. Varro looks as he offers him a block of C4.)

GREER: And I'm gonna need you to create a little diversion for me.

CAVE. Reynolds is still carving his stick into a point.

JOHANSEN: We're gonna be OK. They're almost here.

(He looks up at her and smiles. Just then there's a low growl from outside the cave. T.J. picks up her own stick and Reynolds struggles to his feet as a large shadow fills the opening. Slowly the creature steps down into the cave. If this is one of the babies, then we really don't want to meet the parents, so hopefully it's one of the adults. Over five feet tall even crouching low as it is here, it has six legs rather than four and really big teeth. It looks back and forth between Tamara and Reynolds as it slowly approaches them. They hold up their stakes in readiness.)

JOHANSEN: You ready, Corporal?

REYNOLDS: Yes, ma'am.

JOHANSEN: Aim for its eyes.

(The creature slowly steps closer, its large eyes watching the pair of them carefully, but then its gaze drifts between them and to the fire. T.J. frowns as it adjusts its position to keep them both in view but doesn't move any closer. Suddenly there's a large explosion outside and the creature turns towards the entrance and snarls.)

(In the forest, Greer takes his cue and chases off. Elsewhere, Varro is also running as the creature's kids roar nearby. Their cries appear to be coming from all directions and Varro stops and gets his - and their - bearings before racing off again.)

(In the cave, the adult glares towards the entrance, then turns back towards T.J. and Reynolds, but again its attention is more focussed on the fire. Tamara tilts her head as she thinks about this, but then Greer arrives in the entrance and aims his rifle into the cave.)

GREER: Lieutenant!

(The creature turns towards him and snarls.)

JOHANSEN: Don't shoot!

GREER: What?!

JOHANSEN: I don't think it wants to hurt us.

GREER (cautiously stepping closer): I've got the shot, ma'am.

JOHANSEN: No, the fire. It recognises intelligence.

GREER: Didn't stop it from trying to kill us.

JOHANSEN: That's because you were a threat to it and its family.

GREER: It recognises the threat and goes after it. That's what I was counting on out there to buy us some time, so I suggest that You. Start. Moving.

(The creature continues to growl, its eyes flicking back and forth between T.J. and Reynolds on one side of it and Greer on the other.)

GREER: Slowly.

(Lowering her stake, T.J. reaches out her hand to Reynolds.)

JOHANSEN: Let's go.

(Reynolds hobbles over to her and she slings his arm over her shoulder and supports him as they carefully make their way past Greer and out of the cave. Greer's gaze never moves from the creature as he aims between its eyes, but now he takes a step closer to it as it watches him, growling.)

GREER: If it's intelligent, smart enough to know that I can cause it a world of hurt, maybe even kill it ...

(T.J. and Reynolds turn back to watch the confrontation. Greer's voice trembles slightly as he stares the creature in the eye.)

GREER: ... it's smart enough to know that I'm choosing ...

(Ever so slowly, he lowers his rifle.)

GREER: ... not to.

(The creature growls softly and leans its head closer to the man facing it. It takes a slow step forward, growling again as Greer stands his ground and gazes resolutely into its eyes. Behind him, T.J. suppresses a gasp as the creature moves ever closer, and still Ronald refuses to back away. The creature pushes its head forward one last time, sniffing at him, then quietly growls and withdraws its head, taking one single step back. Ron keeps absolutely still, his eyes still locked on it, and now the creature takes a second step back, and then a third, signifying its intention not to attack. Fighting to stop himself smiling with relief, Ron slowly backs towards the exit as T.J. turns and helps Reynolds away.)

GREER (softly): Let's go.

(He stops at the bottom of the slope out of the cave until the other two are clear, then finally turns and trots away.)

DESTINY BRIDGE. Nicholas is sitting in the command chair watching the schematics of the Stasis Chamber. Smiling ruefully, he leans forward.

RUSH: Ah well.

(He flicks a couple of switches and the schematics shut off. In the Stasis Chamber, Eli is pacing nervously as Chloe looks at the control panel.)


ARMSTRONG: I don't know. I'm not seeing ...

(Just then the lights inside the pod containing Adam go out and the door begins to slide upwards. As the door raises above his head, he comes abruptly back to life.)

BRODY: ... doing?!

(The other two stare at him in surprise. He steps out of the pod, looks back into it for a moment, then turns to the others looking bewildered.)

BRODY: What the hell?

(Chloe and Eli sigh in relief. On the Bridge, Nick sits back in his seat and watches as new information scrolls across his console.)

RUSH: That's that, then.

VOLKER: What's what?

RUSH: Oh, I've just completed a thorough diagnostic of one of the stasis pods. Very informative.

(Dale looks round and frowns at Nick's expression, then turns back to his own console. Nick gazes at his screen thoughtfully.)

FOREST. T.J. and Greer have Reynolds' arms slung around their shoulders and are helping him to hobble along. Suddenly Greer snatches out his pistol and aims it to the side as he senses movement. Varro comes into view and holds up his hands placatingly.

GREER: How many of those things'd you take down?

VARRO (limping closer): About none. But I managed to lose 'em and circle back. I feel like I could sleep for a week.

(They all begin to walk forward again but Greer holds out his hand to stop them.)

GREER: Whoa-whoa. Whoa-whoa.

(They halt again and he steps out from under Reynolds' arm and takes a cautious pace forward. One of the piebald deer has walked into view just in front of them. It stops and looks up at them curiously. Ron tilts his head, locks his gaze onto its eyes and looks at it thoughtfully.)

DESTINY. SOME TIME LATER. Varro goes to the doors of his quarters in response to a knock from outside. He opens them and finds T.J. standing outside smiling at him. He gestures for her to come in.

JOHANSEN (walking in): Congratulations. I hear you're a free man.

VARRO (closing the doors again): Apparently someone put in a good word for me with Colonel Young.

JOHANSEN: As much as I'd like to take credit, I really haven't had any time.

VARRO: I ... no, it was Sergeant Greer.


VARRO: Mmm! (He laughs.) I'd love to thank him, but I get the feeling he'll claim he doesn't know what I'm talking about.

JOHANSEN: Yeah, probably!

(There's a brief awkward pause.)

JOHANSEN: Listen, I just wanted to come by and say I'm sorry about your people. And even though you may feel like you're alone ...

(She gazes into his eyes.)

JOHANSEN: ... you're not.

VARRO (softly): I know.

(He gazes back at her as she lowers her eyes and bites her lip. Stepping forward, he puts a hand gently onto the side of her neck as she smiles, welcoming his touch. He leans closer and they are just about to kiss when there's a knock on the doors. Gosh, I wonder who that could possibly be. T.J. smiles ruefully as Varro looks at the doors in exasperation, then walks across and thumps the wall panel. The doors slide open and - surprise! - it's Colonel Young, with his arm in a sling. He smiles at Varro, then his smile fades as he realises that T.J. is standing nearby.)

VARRO: Come in.

(T.J. looks at Young awkwardly as he steps into the room.)

YOUNG: Ewert said you wanted to lend your expertise to tonight's dinner. Becker's ready.

(He forces another smile at him. Varro smiles back awkwardly, glances at Tamara and then walks away. With his back to T.J., Young closes his eyes in pain for a moment, then turns and grins falsely at her.)

YOUNG: You, uh ... you OK?

JOHANSEN: I'm good.

YOUNG: Good.

(He turns and walks away. Tamara watches him go, then sinks down to sit on the nearby table, gazing into the distance thoughtfully.)

BRIDGE. Nick shuts down his console, stands and strolls towards the exit. Eli and Adam are working on a console at the front of the room.

RUSH: That completes this round of diagnostics. Now we can move on to the fun part.

WALLACE: "Fun part"?

RUSH: Yeah, well, it's time to go and check out the Stasis Chambers now.

BRODY (swinging around on his chair): Whoa, uh ... whoa. Uh, not so fast.

(Nick turns and looks at him.)

WALLACE: Let's ... finish going through the data on that section before we start ... headin' in there and pushin' buttons.

RUSH: Yeah, of course. You're right. Proceed with caution.

(Eli and Adam nod their agreement and turn back to the console. Nick leaves the Bridge with a smug smile on his face.)

CORRIDOR. Clutching a small posy of flowers that he has presumably picked in Hydroponics, Dale walks nervously towards the Infirmary. He has done his best to smarten himself up and is wearing his waistcoat over his shirt. He walks to the doorway and stops at the sight of Greer sitting on the side of Lisa's bed and leaning over her as she strokes his face. They talk and giggle quietly and comfortably and their affection for each other is obvious. Dale watches for a moment, his face filling with pain, then he turns and slowly walks away.

MESS. In the Mess, a piece of wood has been hung over one of the water tanks and has the words "BECKER'S BBQ" chalked on it. Chloe, Eli and Vanessa clink mugs and laugh happily at one of the tables. Nearby, a spit has been set up and Varro and Becker are carving pieces of meat off a large roast and handing them out to a queue of happy crew members.