Back to the alternate universe, which is in Hoboken, New Jersey. A street sign promises cheap beer and live music, and any good Canadian beer drinker recognizes the logo as Keith's, which comes from Nova Scotia. Mmmm. Some guy who looks like Ethan Hawke's older, uglier brother watches a woman bring sunshine and smiles to everyone she meets as she walks down the street. He takes in the street scene, then balances a pen on a mailbox. The traffic rumbles the pen off the mailbox, a man stoops to pick it up, a cyclist swerves to avoid him … there are more steps to this series of events, but let's just skip ahead to the woman getting hit by a bus.
So Olivia is back to work in her new Fauxlivia identity at Fringe division. Walternate tells Broyles that they need to learn how Olivia switches between universes without consequence, and the only way they find out is if they run tests on her as a willing subject, which she won't do unless she actually thinks she's Fauxlivia. Olivia, by the way, isn't faking the Fauxlivia stuff; she really thinks she's Fauxlivia, but Olivia's bleeding through: she spots Peter (well, her memory of Peter) on the street. She spots Walter elsewhere.
The Fringe team's investigating the death-by-bus, because the same thing happened the day before, making it a real statistical anomaly. Agent Lincoln Lee's the one who picks up on the common thread of a Rube Goldbergian chain of events that killed the victims, because of the presence of a ballpoint pen on the scene in both cases – pens apparently rare to the point of being practically non-existent in this universe. Meanwhile, Alt-Charlie, meanwhile, wonders if Fauxlivia might not actually be Fauxlivia.
At the scene of a third accident that unfolds even as the Fringe team is there, Olivia spots the guy responsible (identifying him due to sexy-agent intuition or something), but he escapes via the roof of a passing truck.
The Fringe team eventually finds out the guy, Milo, used to have an IQ in the 50s but has had several Flowers for Algernon-esque intelligence-boosting treatments, and he's killing the people who want to cut off the medication that's making him smarter. They track him down, and he sets in motion a trap that ends with Olivia getting crushed under a forklift-load of cinderblock, but Olivia avoids it because of her actual unfamiliarity with this world, something that Milo couldn't possibly have predicted. Olivia doesn't realize this at the time, though. She needs a hallucination of Peter to explain it to her.
Tonight's episode is number three, an odd number, which means either we're in the alt-Fringe universe or it's one of the crappy Star Trek movies. We're in Hoboken, N.J., and there's a guy who looks like Ethan Hawke's homelier older brother standing on the sidewalk, incessantly tapping his thumb to his ring finger, a tic that is TV shorthand for "mental disorder." Across the way, he watches a woman stroll down the street. Watching her, it seems like the song "Sunshine and Lollipops" should be playing. She cheerfully gives money to a homeless man, literally stops to smell the flowers outside a grocer's, and then there are cartoon bluebirds landing on her shoulders and serenading her, and then this -- is that a fucking elk? -- animal wanders by and stoops so she can ride him down the street of this mystical Hoboken, scattering rose petals as she goes.
After the woman goes inside the grocery to buy a bouquet, the man watches a stoplight change from red to green. He sees a man who for all the world looks like Jeff Bridges reading at a table outside a café. He sees a downtown bus making its way down the street, and he sees a mailbox rattle with the passing traffic.
So: he crosses the street, heedless of the traffic -- he merely points at a car that honks at him. Reaching the mailbox, he smiles as he balances a ballpoint pen on its end on top of it, as a cyclist comes racing around a nearby corner.
The woman comes out of the grocer's, and he starts following her, only to pass her as she stops at the intersection to cross the street.
As the bike asshole slaloms his way around pedestrians instead of being on the street, a passing car splashes the mailbox, and the pen rolls off, onto the sidewalk. Jeff Bridges (who looks slightly less like Jeff Bridges when we see his full face) spies the pen, and he gets up to pick it up, grinning a little more than you'd expect someone to be smiling at the thought of merely getting a free crappy capless ballpoint pen, but the reason for that will become clear later on.
The cyclist swerves to avoid Not-Jeff Bridges -- that's why you should be on the street, you moron! -- but knocks him into the mailbox, which tips over into the street, and he goes flying into the grocer's sidewalk display of flowers and fruit. You see what happens when you bump a stranger in the ass?
The fruit goes spilling across the sidewalk, and I guess the homeless guy, having left the fruit alone up until now, figures it's fair game now that it's street fruit, and he starts gathering it up.