As Willie Nelson sings us through "Crazy," we check in with the East River diner in Brooklyn, where a perky waitress takes an order from a completely bald (no eyebrows, either) gentleman in a dark suit. He wants roast beef, as raw as possible, on a roll, with room temperature water and no ice. The waitress is unfazed, but seems briefly surprised when Baldy orders a side dish of eleven jalapenos. "You got it," she says, widening her eyes slightly at another waitress when she turns around.
Baldy's interested in the construction going on nearby, and takes out a notebook and starts scribbling in it, never once glancing at the page. After flipping open a pocket watch to check the time -- almost 3:15, which is almost 4:20! Woo! -- he whips out a pair of snap-case binoculars and scans the construction workers; the viewfinder seems to have a yellow overlay with targeting and some sort of data analysis -- not that we can make anything out.
The waitress comes back, already with his meal. Maybe it's actually the diner special. She asks about the language he's writing in, as we now see it's an incomprehensible mess of symbols. Also, he's writing right to left. "Is that, like, Korean or something?" she asks. "No," is the entirety of his reply, embarrassing her into babbling about how she was worried about missing something in her Asian studies at CUNY, which is probably code for "I never should have slept with that Takahashi -- he never called me back." He stares at her a moment longer until she leaves, and then he unscrews the pepper shaker and dumps it all out onto his raw roast beef, and soaks the entire mess with Tabasco sauce, and then adds the jalapeno peppers. He plows into the -- I don't know if this is actually recognizable as a sandwich -- creation with the gusto of a man who hasn't eaten in weeks, while the waitresses look on with increasingly undisguised disgust.
Then it's back to the construction watching and cryptic note-taking.
The ground starts to tremble. The sandwich gods are angry at the consumption of such an abomination! Or, it's an earthquake. As the other non-disgusting patrons of the East River diner start to file out, Baldy calmly gulps his water. Outside, an explosion rocks the construction site, and the massive crane totters and then falls. Chaos is erupting, but the waitress will be pleased to find Baldy at least left money on the table for his meal. He calmly puts on his hat and sunglasses, and strolls outside, towards the construction site, carrying a briefcase, to the edge of the crater. He takes out a phone. "It has arrived," he says.
Over in Boston, Peter futilely tries to sleep on the couch while his dad drowsily mutters some chemical formula. At least he's in bed this time. Peter starts angrily shouting at his dad, which only gets his dad talking about making root beer in the lab because he hasn't had one in ages, and Peter stomps off to sleep in the tub instead of telling his dad to buy a damn bottle in the store like a normal person.
Peter stomps through the federal building while some ineffective lackey tries to tell him he's not allowed to walk unescorted, but since she's escorting him, I'm not sure what the huge deal is. Olivia greets him, which is nice for the lackey, because now Peter can start acting like a douchebag in someone else's general direction.
He whines about his dad -- who's still asleep back at the hotel, having been awake until five a.m. inventorying the composition of his favorite beverages -- who also lectured Peter on wasting his intellect and education, and doing it naked. Instead of telling him to quit crying, Olivia tells Peter that the living arrangements are only temporary, since they're finding him an apartment. He tells her not to bother: all these weird things going on are all the result of Walter's work, and Peter's just a babysitter. Olivia says Peter's able to translate what Walter's saying. "Anyone can do that. There's nothing special about me," he says. Olivia cocks her head. "You're his son," she says sweetly. Aw. Part of what she means is that Walter's made it clear that if Peter doesn't stick around, he won't co-operate with the investigation: "He would rather go back to St. Claire's than work here without you. He said that more than once," she says. "Was he wearing clothes at the time?" asks Peter. Note Olivia doesn't say yes.
Over now to a warehouse in Chelsea, Mass., where the Fringe crew gets out of their cars, with Walter cheerily saying "hello" to the federal agents and guards like a politician at a campaign rally.
Broyles leads the gang inside while he tells them about the explosion and crane collapse in Brooklyn, which was attributed to a gas main explosion, which was technically true. "It's what caused the explosion that I want you to see," he says.
What caused the explosion is a two-foot high bullet-shaped metallic object, with a groove that spirals around the thing from base to tip, with a light blue light pulsating in it. "It fell from the sky?" asks Olivia. Broyles tells her it came from underground, blasting through an unused subway tunnel and into a gas main, and came to rest on the surface. It's also vibrating, at two megahertz and four megahertz. Walter's got some idea what it is, but says he won't share it with the rest of them, because it's too early. Surprisingly, no one points out that it's kind of his JOB now to tell them what's going on.
Broyles says this isn't the first time one of these has appeared; it happened in Quantico, where a colonel Jacobson led the investigation. Olivia happens to know the guy, which is awfully convenient, plotwise. Broyles says Jacobson is looking forward to a visit with her, so she goes to leave, checking in to see what Peter wants to do. "What kind of man would take off on you the minute a can of magic space soup appears out of nowhere?" He leans in close to tell her that this is the last one, and then he's gone. Olivia says OK, but doesn't look like she actually believes him. She leaves which means she misses Walter throw a temper tantrum when Broyles is reluctant to move the giant vibrator to Walter's lab at Harvard.
In Roseville, Va., Jacobson, played by That Guy! stalwart Nestor Serrano, greets Olivia with a hug on his front walkway. Inside, he talks about his wife dying last year, and says she took care of everything, and apologizes for the weak coffee. Olivia says it's fine. I mean, what else is she going to say? "I'm sorry your wife died, but that's no excuse for CRAPPY COFFEE"? Of course, this serves as a reminder to Olivia of John's death, which Jacobson knows about. Olivia gets all stone-faced at the mention of John's name, and asks him about what happened in Quantico.
Same basic idea -- a guard at the base noticed the motion sensors going nuts, and found an object. Jacobson shows her a picture of an object identical to the one that surfaced in Brooklyn. Jacobson's surprised when Olivia knows the object in Quantico was vibrating at two and four megahertz. "There's another?" he asks. She asks him if the other one is still at Quantico. Nope! Forty-eight hours after it appeared, there was an explosion unlike any he'd ever seen, and the object went down through the basement. "It exploded down, and was gone," he says, adding that Olivia can have his files, but if this shizznit is happening again, he advises her, as a friend, to get as far away as possible.
Back at the lab, Astrid is getting no further in getting any information out of Walter about what the giant vibrator is. Walter bangs a tuning fork on the table and lets it ring, while the vibrating whine gets louder. Astrid backs away. Yeah, that's a good move. You should see where that takes you.
Over at the warehouse where the -- wait a minute, the vibrator isn't there anymore? What exactly are they guarding? Well, they're not doing such a great job guarding the warehouse, so it's lucky the giant vibrator isn't there anymore. I mean, I'm no FBI agent, but if I'm posted outside some sort of top-secret operation, and some mean-looking s