Fringe

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Maybe All I Need is a Shot in the Arm
ips and falls in VandenKemp's blood. Meanwhile, the receptionist runs off down the hall and launches herself right through a window and plummets 16 storeys onto the windshield of a CDC van.

Up in the office, Olivia arrives in the lobby and is stunned to see Peter with VandenKemp's blood on him. She says his name, and they look at each other some more, and then he runs off while Olivia answers her phone. It's Broyles, understandably wanting to know why people are hurling themselves out of office windows. In the background, CDC guys hose down the corpse and van with some kind of foamy white material.

In the bathroom, Peter frantically scrubs at the blood on his arms, and Olivia comes in and tells him to be careful. Peter looks thoughtful for a moment, and looks at Olivia, who looks like she's doing her best to appear optimistic.

But Peter has other ideas, because the next thing Olivia knows, he's rifling through VandenKemps pockets, much to her horror. The way Peter sees it: "I got his blood on me. If I wasn't infected before, I probably am now." She says this is insane, and he says, "They're down here, and we're up here. And they're not sending anybody else up. This is our last chance to figure out whatever it was that he came here to try and sell." He finally comes up with what he was looking for in the dead man's pockets: rental car keys. As Peter says: "Never take anything into a negotiation that can land you in jail. Always leave it in neutral territory." Yeah, great deduction, Peter, although I'd like to point out that I think A) it's odd that the FBI hasn't managed to consider that a guy flying in from Dubai might need a rental car, and B) if they didn't maybe you should have just called them and suggested it, because once they know what car to look for, they're not going to actually need the keys, so you didn't need to expose yourself again.

Anyway, we watch as a CDC team opens the trunk of a car and removes a briefcase, and then Walter's arriving at the scene again, telling Broyles about his hypothesis as to how the virus behaves: "This virus has to spread itself, but in order to do so, it needs other organisms to infect," Walter "explains," even though what he's saying amounts to "It has to spread, but in order to do so, it needs to spread." Walter says it wasn't until VandenKemp was in an office full of people that he sprayed. "But having successfully infected other people, I believe that the virus now senses that it's contained within the building, and ... and it wants to get outside to continue spreading." Broyles is all, "The virus wants to get outside? Doesn't that strike even you as a bit far-fetched?" Walter points out the courier only spewed as he approached the outside doors, and then the receptionist hurled herself outside before she sprayed. "The virus compelled her to leave the building. It wanted to get outside." "You're saying the virus made her jump," says Broyles, and Walter's all, bingo! They could call the virus Kris Kross!

Then they go into a tent, where we watch some video feed of CDC techs poking around at a cylinder of material they found in VandenKemp's briefcase. "Among other things in the briefcase, we found a drill core sample from an exploratory dig." Microscopic shots of black stuff and red stuff! "This is our virus," he says.

After the commercial break, we learn that the sample was stolen from Solum Oil Corp., and should have been stored in an airtight, protective case, and it came from 10 miles below the surface. "In that case, I believe we're in the presence of a 75,000-year-old terror," says Walter. Always keeping things clinical, our Walter. He suspects this virus might have been responsible for wiping out the ice-age mammals. "Some things are meant to be left alone," he adds.

Broyles wants to know if he can find a cure for it. "Maybe, in time. But right now, we need to keep the safe people safe. Now that I have an isolated sample, I can produce a tox screen. At least we can identify who's been infected," he says.

In the office, Peter's watching old Lost in Space episodes (as opposed to new ones, I suppose) when the CDC guy who was helping Walter walks in with Walter and Astrid and another dude or two. He introduces himself to Olivia as Bill Hubert, and says they need the office to divide into two groups. Peter's standing by himself looking all surly in a grey tank top. Walter waves, but his smile fades, and Peter gives him a grim little nod.

Outside, McFadden says to another suit, "Call the State Department. Get approval for a Level Six eradication." My immediate response: "Oh, I don't like the sound of that 'level six'!" Which is then pretty much the assistant's response, too. "We don't know how to contain it. If anybody on the outside got infected..." says McFadden. He doesn't have to finish that sentence, because we've all seen 28 Weeks Later.

Back in the office, Peter's handing out bag lunches to people when he sees a couple of droplets of blood on a bag. He puts his finger to his nose, and it comes away bloody. This is his cue to start looking sinister in lots of close-ups with shadowy lighting.

And then it's on to the tox screen, where Olivia tells Peter they're just getting started. Aaron A. Aaronson, please come on down! Vincent Ames steps up and wonders how he'll know if he's infected. Is he worried the CDC guys wouldn't tell him? Walter explains that if he's infected, the solution will turn black. He gives Ames a swab for the inside of his cheek. Ames does it, and gives the sample back to Walter, who swirls it around in the tube. It turns amber, which means Ames is in the clear, at least virus-wise. Olivia-wise, he's not out of the woods yet: "We'll be in touch," Olivia tells him, just a bit of menace to her voice.

Then it's Peter, and then Olivia. They look at each other for a moment, and then Peter says, "Ladies first." So Olivia goes through the process first, and gets a clean bill of health from Walter. So Peter steps up for his turn, and takes the long cotton swab and swipes it in his mouth, and then surreptitiously flips the swab around, handing the clean end to Walter. Well, that's great. This virus could destroy humanity, but we'll let you provide your own samples.

Fear is etched on Walter's face as he swirls Peter's sample and holds it up, fingers trembling. Olivia watches from behind. The relief on Walter's face and his struggle to keep his voice from cracking as he tells Peter that he's OK almost made me cry, especially knowing that Peter's infected. Peter quickly orders a group to come downstairs with him.

Downstairs, the first group of uninfected (and Peter) file their way outside the doors guarded by CDC guys with guns. They check the names of each of the office workers as they walk outside, with Olivia just in front of Peter. She walks through, and then turns, smiling, to look at Peter just as one of the CDC thugs notices Peter's nosebleed. They grab him, as Peter's veins start to constrict and he lunges for the door, at Olivia. "I just have to get outside!" he yells.

Back upstairs, a man's sample turns black. "But I wasn't near anyone," he says. "Steve, you need to come with me," says Detective Kassel. Nice of him to show up. Where is he when people are throwing themselves out windows? Walter looks perturbed. He ain't seen nothing yet.

His son, downstairs, is pounding on the glass and yelling for Olivia to open the door. "Peter, I can't. You know that," she says. And Peter, looking like he's on heroin, tries to look as cheerful and normal as possible before he gets angry again, and runs off somewhere in the building.

After the commercial break, Det. Kassel is being cleared by Walter, and he's the last one. Astrid calls Olivia to tell her they finished the tox screens, and Olivia tells her about Peter: "The test was wrong. I, I don't know how, but... but he's bleeding from his nose and he's still in the building." Astrid's too shocked to say much more than "OK," and she hangs up and Walter asks, "What was that about Peter?" We don't get

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Fringe

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