Day 5: 2:00 AM – 3:00 AM

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High Jack

It's 2:06:16, and a police car is patrolling outside a hotel. It totally misses Chloe, of course, because it doesn't have a rearview mirror or something, and once it's clear she heads inside the building. She quickly makes her way through the L.A. trendoid lobby and into the hotel bar, which is neither as abandoned nor as crowded as you might think at two in the morning. She finds a table and pulls out her laptop, with its Ethernet cable still attached to whatever she's got in her bag. An IOU from the prop department, probably. A guy up at the bar leers at her through his red-wine goggles, and Chloe barely takes notice of him. He should consider that a good thing. He won't. Chloe then gets out her cell phone to call Hayes and have her make sure that nobody looks for her at the hotel. Hayes asks what else Chloe needs, and Chloe requests the passenger manifest for Diplomatic Flight 520. Hayes pulls it up; we learn that the plane is bound for Frankfurt (not that it's going to get there), and Chloe asks her to put all 520-related info on the shared drive so Chloe can access it. Believe it or not, that's not going to send up any red flags in the office. At least not this hour.

Chloe next calls Kiefer, who is of course chilling in the dimly-lit cargo hold of Flight 520. I don't know how she's able to get through, because I'm pretty sure they make you turn off your cell phone before the plane takes off. Now that I know that that rule only applies to people in the passenger cabin, I may have to rethink my custom of asking for an exit row. Chloe says it's going to take her some time to cross-check the passenger list against Henderson, but she'll have the deets on the flight's Air Marshal in a couple of minutes. Kiefer asks what's up at CTU. Theoretically, that's where Audrey is, not that she's seen or mentioned this episode, even in the previouslies. Chloe says CTU is still trying to stop Kiefer, although Hayes is on their side now. "Openly?" Kiefer asks, surprised, and Chloe says, "No, but she's letting me help you. If there's proof against Logan, she wants it found." "The proof is on this plane," Kiefer reminds the slower viewers, and hangs up with a reminder for Chloe to get him the Air Marshal's seat number.

It's 2:08:32, and Red Wine Goggles Guy has managed to chase away the woman a few seats away from him at the bar. "You don't have to go all feminist on me," he carps at her as she goes past, then turns to the bartender to whine, "Did you see that? Twenty-first-century woman. We'd better get used to it." Okay, hairline issues or no, that guy was born late enough that he's had his whole adult life to "get used to it." Although I suppose it's possible that he's just visiting. From 1974. Chloe manages to drag her attention away from the minidrama across the room long enough to pull up the info about the Air Marshal on Kiefer's flight and call Kiefer. The Marshal's in seat 7A, name of George Avila, and nobody's sitting next to him. Kiefer hangs up, reminding her that her outstanding assignment is to find a passenger with a connection to Henderson. He unslings his man-purse and stands up, reaching for a hatch in the ceiling. He's not going to leave it behind, is he? He turns a handle in the hatch, and the next thing you know a panel in floor of the plane's aft galley cracks open. Kiefer peeks out from under it, silently cursing the fact that he was just a second too late to look up a flight attendant's skirt. Unnoticed by anyone, he hops up into the empty galley and shuts the hatch under him. I had no idea it was so easy to get from the luggage compartment to the cabin of an airliner. Now when I fly, in addition to everything else, I'm going to have to worry about the cabin being invaded by angry suitcases. As a woman in row 7 gets up to go to the bathroom, Kiefer comes out into the aisle, trying to look like he's been a legitimate passenger the whole time. Which, considering it's only the first ten minutes of the flight, should be a lot trickier than it seems here. Also, an awful lot of people are already asleep for this early after takeoff. Kiefer makes it to row 7, and asks George Avila -- sitting in a window seat, which doesn't seem like a good idea for an Air Marshal -- if the seat next to him is taken. Avila, who doesn't look much like an Air Marshal, and thus probably looks exactly like an Air Marshal, completely fails to become suspicious at this new passenger who's actually asking to sit in a middle seat. Kiefer spins some cock-and-bull story about wanting to change seats to get away from the galley so he could get some rest, as he steals 7C's pillow and tucks it into his lap. After taking a moment to make sure that the whole cabin crew is busy up in First Class, he knocks Avila unconscious with a quick elbow to the face. The great part is that he then tucks 7C's pillow in between Avila's head and the window. Wouldn't want the Air Marshal to wake up with a sore face and a stiff neck, would we? Kiefer takes Avila's badge out, and looks both relieved that he got the right guy and nervous that his habit of knocking out U.S. Marshals has increased to two per day. It's 2:10:28.

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