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311 Collateral Damage

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311 Collateral Damage

[MLM-311 (3ABC11)]

Written by Michael R. Perry

Directed by Thomas J Wright

Edited by James Coblentz

Air Date: January 22, 1999

[Transcribed by Libby]

[A bowling alley - a strike. The blonde girl striker and her team jump for joy. They are all girls, wearing a cowboy hat with a pi symbol. The opposition are a team of boys wearing berets with a delta symbol. It's "Welcome to Greek Week", according to a banner. The girls sing a cheerleader-type chant, mocking the boys. The girl striker, Taylor, gestures to one of the opposing team players to step up.]

TAYLOR: Gentlemen.

[The boy, Nick, gets up. As he prepares to bowl, an announcement comes over the PA system.]

PA ANNOUNCER: Driver of the jeep license LY46757, your lights are on.

[Nick bowls - and it's a strike. The boys applaud. Nick sees Taylor putting on her jacket and picking up her bag.]

NICK: Where you going?

TAYLOR: I left my lights on.

[Nick checks with the rest of his team who all give him the OK to go with her.]


[Taylor walks into the car park. Nick catches up with her.]

NICK: Hey. You're a really good bowler, you know.

TAYLOR: Gee, thanks, That's like the nicest thing anyone's ever said to me.

[They stop and kiss. Then Taylor looks around.]

TAYLOR: Hey. Did you move my car?

[she runs off. Nick follows. She looks in her bag for her keys.]

TAYLOR: OK, great joke, Nick. Come on, where are my keys? Nick.

[Nick isn't anywhere to be seen.]


[He suddenly appears behind her.]

NICK: Boo!

[she laughs. Then yells in alarm.]


[A man grabs Nick from behind and tazers him. Taylor drops to the ground and slides underneath a car. Nick falls to the ground and lies still, eyes open. The masked assailant, his shoes covered in plastic sheeting, walks around, looking for Taylor. Taylor slides out from under the car and makes a run for it. The assailant catches her but she hits him. He fells and she runs to another man who is walking through the car park.]

TAYLOR: Help me! Some guy just attacked us!

MAN: Where?

TAYLOR: He's right there.

[she turns to point and the man grabs her round the neck and tazers her. He lowers her to the ground where she lies, twitching. The masked man comes over and the two men lift her and carry her away.]

[main titles]

[FBI briefing room. McClaren starts the briefing. There are many agents here, every seat is occupied and several agents stand against the wall. A video of Taylor is being shown - she's in a party hat, blowing out candles on a birthday cake, opening presents, etc.]

McCLAREN: This is the most recent footage of the victim, Taylor Watts. It was taken in August, just before she was getting ready to go off to college, William and Mary, where she was a well-liked freshman.

[He pauses the video showing Taylor's face.]

McCLAREN: Now I don't need to tell you that this one's different, people. This is family. Peter.

[Watts gets up to address the agents.]

WATTS: First, I know that you have all been pulled off pressing assignments. My wife and I thank you. A fellow student of Taylor's, Nick Carfagna, was the sole witness. He's been cleared of any involvement, but he was able to provide us with a description of the kidnapper. You'll find it on the last page of your fact sheets.

[Many agents turn over pages, but not Hollis who is watching Watts.]

WATTS: There's not much to go on. He was wearing a mask, probably of the type issued to the troops in Kuwait, now widely available at surplus. The crime scene was equally nonproductive. Slide, please.

[The slide shows a red car.]

WATTS: No useful prints were developed from the car. Fiber evidence was inconclusive. No footprints were developed. It's been sixteen hours since she was taken, we have not heard from the kidnappers. That's all I have.

[Watts turns around, looking at the stilled video of his daughter.]

McCLAREN: Let's get her back.

[Main office. Hollis walks towards her desk. McClaren exits the briefing room and calls to her.]

McCLAREN: Hollis.

[Hollis stops. McClaren talks quietly to her.]

McCLAREN: The man's daughter has been abducted.

HOLLIS: I understand that.

McCLAREN: But I don't appreciate your attitude.

HOLLIS: With all respect, I think it's naive to talk about Taylor Watts like she's just like some coed that got taken by chance.

McCLAREN: You know something about her that we don't?

HOLLIS: Sir, the Millennium Group was not mentioned in the briefing. [McClaren sighs.] Or the enemies they've made. Now…

McCLAREN: You and Frank…

HOLLIS: Where is Frank? If it were my daughter I'd want him on this case. Why doesn't Peter Watts?

[Watts has appeared from the briefing room without Hollis noticing.]

WATTS: Frank declined to become involved.

[Hollis looks awkward.]

HOLLIS: I'm sorry about your daughter.

[Later. Frank and Hollis are sat in her car.]

FRANK: I know Taylor Watts. It's a terrible thing.

HOLLIS: They told me you refused to help. Didn't sound like you. You believe she was actually kidnapped?

FRANK: Don't you?

HOLLIS: With Watts involved I honestly don't know what to believe.

FRANK: Well, they took her. They took her right from here.

HOLLIS: "They"? The witness described a single attacker.

FRANK: Doubtful. Not with Taylor Watts. It was planned. Precise operation.

HOLLIS: Do you think she's still alive?

FRANK: Well, considering the amount of energy they expended to get her, the one thing we can be sure of is that she's alive.

[Taylor is lying face down on a metal table, her head overhanging the end. She is very distressed.]

TAYLOR: Don't hurt me, please.

[The room looks like a morgue - metal table, cupboards, the walls are lined with metal, maybe stainless steel. A man is dressed in scrubs and a floor-length apron.]

TAYLOR: Please don't hurt me. What do you want? I can get money!

[The man doesn't reply. He pulls on rubber gloves. Taylor is fully clothed, hands and feet bound to the table.]

TAYLOR: [screams] Help me!

[The man picks up a pair of scissors. He's wearing surgical gear - mask, cap and eye protection. He cuts and pulls off Taylor's clothes as she screams. Then he sprays water all over her and rinses her hair.

TAYLOR: What are you doing to me?

[The man uses a brush to clean her as in decontamination fashion.]

TAYLOR: Ow! Please stop! Please! You're hurting me!

[The man pulls her head up by her hair.]

MAN: Please try to relax.

[He takes a polaroid photograph.]

[McClaren's office. Taylor's photograph in a year book.]

McCLAREN: This is kind of uncomfortable for me, but I'm going to have to ask you the same questions I'd ask any father in this situation. Everything OK at home?

WATTS: We're a very close family.

McCLAREN: What about boyfriends? Ex-boyfriends?

WATTS: Just as on the fact sheet. I interviewed them all personally. You're welcome to try that too.

McCLAREN: What about the Millennium Group? Cases that you've worked.

WATTS: The Group's investigating those possibilities.

McCLAREN: It would help if we had a list of members.

WATTS: I don't disagree with you, but, there are issues with that. You know, policy.

McCLAREN: You know, this is your daughter's life. Can't somebody make an exception?

[McClaren's phone rings. Watts looks uncomfortable. McClaren picks up the phone.]

McCLAREN: McClaren. [pause] OK, good.

[He puts phone down.]

McCLAREN: Highway Patrol found the car used in the abduction.

[A police photographer takes a photo of the car.]


[The trunk is opened. Hollis and Frank are there. Frank looks in the trunk. Vision: black and white images including a bomb explosion.]

HOLLIS: What's that smell?

FRANK: The odor of spectrumaldehyde. A spectracide disinfectant.

HOLLIS: Destroying genetic evidence.

FRANK: Maybe he was just trying to protect himself.

HOLLIS: From what?

[Frank looks up at a street light. The abandoned car is parked next to a boarded up wooden house. Frank walks off to an area of scrub where he sees tire marks.]

FRANK: They switched cars. The second vehicle was parked here away from the light. Here's a tire track. Boot print.

[A police car siren – another police car and unmarked car arrive.]

FRANK: The cavalry.

[McClaren and Watts get out of one of the cars. Watts and Frank look at each other – there's an air of antagonism in the situation. Frank gets into his jeep, Hollis standing by the door. Watts sits back in the car he arrived in.]

FRANK: Forget that it's Watts for a moment. Just think high-risk target. Difficult location. Elaborate planning. It's a textbook case.

HOLLIS: Kidnap for ransom.

FRANK: So what's missing?

HOLLIS: A ransom demand. Communication from the kidnappers.

FRANK: Oh, they've got communication. We just haven't seen it.

HOLLIS: What kind of father…

FRANK: You know what kind.

[Watts is sat in the car, looking at the polaroid of his daughter.]

[fade to black]

[polaroid fade up]

[Frank is looking at crime scene photographs pinned on the wall of the briefing room.]

McCLAREN: Frank? Are you planning to let me know what you make of all this?

FRANK: Sins of the father.

McCLAREN: Based on what? There is not one single fact that points in that direction.

FRANK: Peter didn't ask you in on this, did he? You didn't hear about it from him.

McCLAREN: We were notified originally by the local PD. So what?

FRANK: He didn't ask for our help because he doesn't want it.

McCLAREN: Now look, Frank. I was very happy that you were working on this on your own. But you got to tell me, are you in or are you out, because I can't have you sniping from the sidelines.

FRANK: You're looking for possibly two men. Military or police training. High IQ. They feel they're on a mission. At war, even. And that warrants a high degree of personal risk.

McCLAREN: What kind of mission?

FRANK: I don't know yet.

McCLAREN: Well, you're right about the military part. That tire tread you pointed us to? It's only sold at military PXs. So was the boot. I've got agents digging through receipts at forty-two bases trying to make a match.

FRANK: I think we can narrow your search down further.


FRANK: They bought a large quantity of a disinfectant known as spectrumaldehyde.

[A darkened room with shelving covered in plastic sheeting. Containers of liquid on the shelves. The door bursts open and SWAT team enters. They search upstairs, breaking down a door. A man is sat on a bed, facing away from them.]

SWAT AGENT: FBI! Put up your hands! Put up your hands and turn around! Now!

[The man doesn't move. One of the agents sees blood running down from behind the man's ear. He pushes the man who falls onto the floor. He is clearly dead.]


[There is an electrical lead clamped to the man's thumbs. His thumb nails are bloody.]

WATTS: David Cougar. Golf war vet. Fifth special forces group. He was one of the abductors. The boots match. He was tortured, electrical shock, fingernails removed, both corneas ruptured.

HOLLIS: Execution wound, point blank to the back of the head. We've seen this before.

[Hollis waits, but doesn't get any response from Watts. She goes over to the door, pausing to look back at Watts, then leaves.]


McCLAREN: Now look, the dead guy in there, David Cougar, fits your profile to a T. He's military, Desert Storm, spent time in a psych ward when he got back. But his partner's the sick one. He got Cougar to help him grab the Watts girl then rewarded him like that.

FRANK: I'm not sure the other kidnapper did this. Excuse me.

[Hollis has left the house and Franks walks over to her.]

HOLLIS: Shot point blank to the back of the head. Just like the skulls in Maine.

FRANK: It's a Millennium Group execution.

HOLLIS: The head shot's kind of gratuitous given everything else they did to him.

FRANK: It's a sign for members who arrive - behave accordingly.

HOLLIS: Think we'll find anything in there?

FRANK: No evidence. That scene is severe by anyone's standards. I think the Group is getting desperate about it, whatever it is.

[Hollis moves away. Frank sees Watts standing in the doorway. Frank walks away.]

[The metal table, now empty. The walls of this room are stainless steel. Taylor is now bound to a metal chair, dressed in orange scrubs. The door opens. The man Swan comes in, still dressed in blue scrubs and surgical mask. A tear falls down Taylor's face.]

TAYLOR: Please. My father'll do whatever you want, just call him, please. He'll pay anything, I know it.

SWAN: He already said no. [pause – Taylor is disbelieving] I'm sorry, but that's what happened.

TAYLOR: What do you mean?

SWAN: He said no. [pause] He's your father, maybe you understand it.

TAYLOR: I don't.

[More tears run down her face.]

TAYLOR: Who are you?

[He throws down a bag on a nearby table. Then he takes off his surgical cap, glasses and mask.]

TAYLOR: Let me talk to him. He'll listen to me. He'll pay it, I know he will.

SWAN: I don't want money. I want the truth. About what he does, about the people he works with.

TAYLOR: What are you talking about?

SWAN: You wouldn't believe it unless you heard it from his mouth. No-one would. Which unfortunately makes all of this necessary.

TAYLOR: Please. I don't understand.

[swan moves over and kneels down in front of her. He tries to move her hair away from her face but she recoils from him. Nevertheless, he gently moves her hair and touches her face. She bites his hands. He yells and eventually pulls his hand away. He slaps her across the face. Angrily, he goes over to the table and starts unpacking the bag.]

SWAN: I never thought it would go this far.

[He takes out a metal container.]

SWAN: That a father could do this.

[He takes out a gas mask.]

SWAN: I never wanted to kill anyone.

[He has his back to Taylor. He puts on the gas mask. He turns round to face her. She starts crying. He presses a switch on the metal container and gas is released. Taylor holds her breath. Swan leaves the room. The gas continues to be released. Taylor can't hold her breath any longer and gasps.]

[briefing room. Photograph of the dead man, David Cougar.]

McCLAREN: Sergeant David Cougar was one of two kidnappers who abducted Taylor Watts. We identified and located Cougar too late, after he had been tortured and killed by his partner. Now there's a profile of that partner in your briefing packets, supplied by the Millennium Group. He's impulsive but intelligent. He has periods of lucidity interrupted by psychotic breaks. Presumably it was during one such break…

FRANK: He didn't kill his partner.

McCLAREN: Who did then?

FRANK: Ask that man. Ask Peter Watts.

McCLAREN: All right, that's enough, Frank.

FRANK: The Millennium Group got there before us. Anything you think you learned from that crime scene, they planted there.

McCLAREN: I said, that's enough.

[Frank looks at Watts, who looks away. Frank walks towards the door and Hollis gets up to follow.]

McCLAREN: Hollis.

[Frank leaves. Hollis stays where she is.]

[street. Day. Frank goes into a building. Inside, he talks to a military doctor.]

DOCTOR: David Cougar. I can't believe he was murdered. After everything he went through.

FRANK: In Desert Storm?

DOCTOR: Oh, and afterwards. Each war has its own syndrome. World War II it was shellshock, Vietnam was post traumatic stress disorder. The Gulf War gave us paranoia, I guess. Veterans are obsessed with germs and disease. They thought they were being poisoned.

FRANK: Had they?

DOCTOR: Who knows? It's a psych ward. But a lot of them thought so.

FRANK: Other than Cougar.

DOCTOR: He was mild compared to some in his group. And he got better, he stopped coming, even for outpatients, about a year ago. I can't believe that he took that girl.

FRANK: Quite likely he was involved with someone from his group. Do you have any files?

DOCTOR: We're the government. Of course we have files.

[The Doctor and Frank look through files.]

DOCTOR: What are you looking for exactly?

FRANK: High intelligence, special training. He wouldn't be infantry.

[The Doctor picks up a folder – it's empty.]

DOCTOR: Oh, this isn't checked out. All the records are just gone.

[The folder has the number #17598 and the name Eric Swan.

FRANK: Eric Swan. Do you know him?

DOCTOR: Oh, yeah. He's the talk show king. He ran up a major phone bill here in the office, telling everybody in the country the truth about Desert Storm.

FRANK: Do you have an address on him?

DOCTOR: It should be there.

[Frank leaves the building. Across the street on a grassy area stands Peter Watts. Frank sees him and hesitates, as if to walk on, then goes over to Watts.]

FRANK: She's your daughter, Peter. You know, they don't even have a name for what you're doing.

WATTS: I'm doing everything I can to get her back. Do you think we're not trying? The Group took a big hit when you left.

FRANK: Don't flatter me.

WATTS: That's the truth.

FRANK: You don't even know the truth anymore. What do they want? How many times have you talked to them?

WATTS: It's immaterial. Their demands are never going to be met.

FRANK: Never be met by you? Her father?

WATTS: Not by me, by the Group.

FRANK: Desert Storm. Is that what this is about?

[Watts doesn't answer.]

FRANK: What's the Group's involvement?

WATTS: Group intelligence helped the US keep casualties down to a hundred and forty-seven.

FRANK: Another lie.

WATTS: Then stop asking me questions you know I can't answer! You know I can't.

[Watts now is almost crying.]

WATTS: Will you help me find her?

FRANK: That's what I've been doing.

WATTS: But I'm asking you. They can't know about it, the Group can't know. Will you help me?

FRANK: Yes, I will.

WATTS: I got two photographs. This came yesterday. I was heartened she looked OK. This came today.

[A polaroid of Taylor bound to the chair. Her skin now is blotchy.]

FRANK: What's this? What's this canister?

WATTS: Judging from her condition, she has no more than thirty six hours to live.

[fade to black]

[polaroid fade up]

[McClaren's office. Swan's Army ID.]

McCLAREN: So this is our guy, huh?

FRANK: He worked closely with Cougar, the man we found murdered. They spent time together in a psych ward at Walter Reed.

HOLLIS: They both were obsessed by biological agents they said were used in Desert Storm. Swan wrote letters, called into radio talk shows.

FRANK: Then he stopped talking.

[Frank hands McClaren the polaroid of Taylor.]

McCLAREN: Good god. What did he do to her?

FRANK: She's been infected by some kind of biological agent. I don't think we have much time.

McCLAREN: Where'd you get this?

FRANK: It was delivered to Walter Reed.

[Hollis looks at Frank as if she's not believing this explanation.]

McCLAREN: So what does he want? Somebody to tell his story?

FRANK: No. He's told his story, no-one listened. I think he wants a confession from the people responsible.

McCLAREN: Responsible for what? Some figment of his imagination?

FRANK: No, the same people who killed his partner. There's a reason he chose Taylor Watts.

McCLAREN: So what do you suggest we do?

HOLLIS: He used to call in to Art Bell's radio talk show. It's conspiracy stuff, a forum for people like Swan. We think he called in dozens of times under the name Thomas Paine.

FRANK: If he's still listening, I think we can get him to talk, to call in.

McCLAREN: And then trace it?

FRANK: We don't have much else to go on now.

McCLAREN: Peter Watts is her father. He stays in the loop.

[Frank leans back, folding his arms, not happy.]

HOLLIS: Watts can work the trace van with me.

[McClaren nods.]

[Trace van. Watts listens in to Art Bell's radio show.]

ART BELL: From the high desert in the great American south west, I'm Art Bell and this is Coast to Coast AM live. Where you never know what's going to happen next. Except, perhaps, right now.

[Radio studio. Frank sits opposite Art Bell.]

STUDIO MAN: And you're clear.

[Art switches off his mic and pulls off his headphones.]

ART BELL: Mr. Black. You know, a lot of my listeners consider you the enemy.


ART BELL: FBI, NSA, CIA. Government. I let them talk, that doesn't mean I agree with them.

FRANK: Well, sometimes I agree with them.

STUDIO MAN: Back in five, Art.

[both Art and Frank put on headphones.]

ART BELL: Well, hello. I see in the news that Saddam is back. And before the war machine of the Great Satan, that would be us, begins rolling and mowing down Iraqis –

[swan in the metal room.]

ART BELL: – I'd like to take, I think, a moment to think about what happened last time.

[Watts in the trace van.]

ART BELL: Our guys, you remember our guys, sick, poisoned, victims of chemical warfare, biotoxins. A lot of people say our own, or were they?

[Taylor, blotched face, semi-comatose.]

ART BELL: I want to hear from you. Triple eight, triple five, zero one one one.

[swan looking at Taylor through door flap whilst listening to the radio.]

ART BELL: Call toll-free from anywhere in the greatest country in the world. Chuck, from Cincinnati, you're on the air.

[Radio studio. "Chuck" can be seen in an adjoining studio.]

CHUCK: Huh, yeah, hey, listen. I was an MP in Kuwait and I've heard all this flap about Gulf War syndrome, but you know what? It seems like it always comes from someone with their hand out. You ever notice that?

[swan is listening to the radio – not happy with what he's just heard. He has a cellphone to his ear.]

ART BELL: Are you saying nothing happened?

CHUCK: Oh, yeah, something happened. Some greedy yahoo figured out free money and started whining.

ART BELL: All right. Let's hear what some other listeners have to say. Line four, Thomas Paine, you're on the air.

SWAN: Some of us never asked for a cent.

ART BELL: Good to have you back with us, Thomas. It's been a while and I've been wondering what happened.

SWAN: I've been pretty busy. OK, a lot of guys never saw anything weird in Desert Storm --

[inside trace van.]

AGENT: It's a mobile phone in the DC area. I have cell information. Covers an area of around eleven square miles.

[Trace van moves off.]

ART BELL: What do you know?

[swan's hideout.]

SWAN: February 25th 1991. Ground war's well under way. We're on some kind of mop-up assignment. Not supposed to be a lot of Saddam's armor left, so who do we fire on?

ART BELL: Friendly fire accidents are well documented, Thomas.

SWAN: This is not some accident. This is not some mistake. This was premeditated. Totally, totally deliberate.

[inside trace van.]

HOLLIS: How far?

AGENT: We're in the cell, I'm tracking radio strengths.

[swan's hideout.]

SWAN: …make biological weapons, we say we don't. Does anybody actually believe that? And these weapons we supposedly don't make, after you finish taking out a bunch of half-starved Iraqis, aren't you gonna want to test them on some real soldiers? Fully inoculated, wearing state-of-the-art gear? The best fighting force in the world? Under actual combat conditions. That's what they had in Desert Storm and that's what they did.

ART BELL: Who did?

SWAN: I did! OK? The co-ordinates came in and an order to fire. I loaded the shell, I launched it.

[inside trace van.]

AGENT: We're getting close.

[swan's hideout.]

SWAN: The next day they denied anything ever happened. But I found them. A whole platoon dead in a medical tent. Then they said the Iraqis did it. But I know. I was nineteen. They gave me the co-ordinates and I followed orders.

[Frank listens, somberly.]

ART BELL: Thomas Paine, are you there?

SWAN: I pulled the trigger. So don't anybody tell me it didn't happen.

[inside trace van.]

HOLLIS: Frank. We're closing in, but you've got to keep him on the air.

[Radio studio. Frank grabs the microphone.]

FRANK: Thomas. I believe you.

ART BELL: In the studio I have Frank Black.

SWAN: Who are you?

FRANK: They did the same thing in this country.

SWAN: I'm talking about something that actually happened in Kuwait to American soldiers.

FRANK: And I'm talking about the death of my wife. Yellowing skin, purple lesions, bleeding out in the northwest last year. With seventy other people, OK? So don't tell me that never happened. Because I'm tired of it, I'm tired. I'm tired of not knowing what killed her.

[Trace van. Watts listening.]

[swan's hideout. He pauses, then responds.]

SWAN: Microplasma flavivirus. That's what they call it.

[Radio Studio.]

FRANK: They'll screw you up with denials, Thomas. Don't let them push you into doing something you shouldn't do, because if you do, they've got you right where they want you. Now, we're listening.

[swan's hideout.]

SWAN: I'm done talking.

FRANK: Thomas, are you there?

[swan goes over and looks through the door window again at Taylor.]

FRANK: Thomas?

SWAN: Now they have to talk. They have to. They have to admit what they've done.

FRANK: Who? The army?

SWAN: That's who I thought at first. That wasn't them.


SWAN: Who does what the government can't do? They know who they are.

[Trace van. Hollis and Watts listening intently.]

SWAN: And they'll admit it. If they're human, they'll admit it.

[swan opens the door. Taylor whimpers.]

FRANK: You can't count on others. You know that. I can hear in your voice you're a decent man.

[swan opens a refrigerator. Metal containers and some glass containers with liquids.]

FRANK: What you say you did.

SWAN: What I did.

FRANK: What you did in Kuwait, that doesn't make you a killer.

[swan picks up a plastic bag containing a hypodermic syringe labelled "Marburg Variant".]

FRANK: Don't do this.

SWAN: They have the antidote now.

FRANK: How do you know?

SWAN: I just know. Believe me, I know.

[Trace van. Beeping is faster.]

SWAN: I'm in trouble.

FRANK: Then you can stop this. You have the truth on your side, Thomas. That's not everything, we both know that. But it's something.

[swan looks at Taylor.]

[Trace van. Beeping very fast.]

AGENT: Right here. We got him.

[The trace van stops outside a building. Watts and Hollis get out, guns in hand.]

[swan looks at Taylor, who is shivering.]

FRANK: Don't let them win, Thomas. Don't let them win.

[swan looks at the syringe.]

[Watts kicks in the front door.]

[There's a squealing sound and Frank and Art Bell react, quickly snatching off their headphones.]

[Watts and Hollis search the house. Hollis' flashlight illuminates something on the floor - two cellphones taped together, wires leading to a connector on the wall.]

HOLLIS: A relay. The call was forwarded.

[she pulls on a wire - attached to it is a small circular pad.]

HOLLIS: We lost him when we opened the door.

[she looks at Watts.]

HOLLIS: I'm sorry.

[she walks off, leaving Watts alone in the empty room.]

[fade to black]

[polaroid fade up]

[Evidence bag containing the cellphones.]

HOLLIS: He wasn't about to let that call be traced. It was re-transmitted four times, finally by CB radio found in Silver Spring.

FRANK: How large an area would this reach?

HOLLIS: Virginia, Maryland, millions of homes. They're trying to narrow it down but it'll take days.

FRANK: We don't have days.

HOLLIS: I was with Peter Watts when we got to that house and his daughter wasn't there. This is destroying him.

FRANK: I know.

HOLLIS: So why won't he talk?

FRANK: The Millennium Group. We have no idea what he's going through.

HOLLIS: He's her father.

FRANK: Swan wanted to talk. As long as Taylor's alive, I've got to believe that we can reach him. His toxin, he called it microplasma flavivirus.

HOLLIS: I already checked it out by a guy who says it doesn't exist.

FRANK: For Swan it exists. And maybe for others.

[Taylor, still bound, but covered with a blanket. She is shaking much more, and her skin is worse. Swan looks through the window in the door. Taylor sees him.]

TAYLOR: Please talk to me.

[swan opens the door.]

TAYLOR: I heard what you said on the phone. Is it true?

SWAN: Yes.

TAYLOR: But it's not my father. It can't be.

SWAN: It is. The Millennium Group who he works with. It's what they did. It's what he did.

[Taylor shakes her head, repeatedly.]

TAYLOR: It's not.

[she starts crying. She looks at her arm - red blotches on her hand and a band of blood around her wrist from the strap. Swan leaves, shutting the door behind him. Taylor continues to look at her hands, seeing the visible signs of the toxin.]

[Computer screen showing "Conspiracy Central" website.]

HOLLIS: The Internet's Conspiracy Central. His posts as Thomas Paine stopped six months ago. About the time he stopped calling into Art Bell.

FRANK: You think he's still posting.

HOLLIS: Not publicly, but there are a number of private mailing lists devoted to conspiracy topics.

[Hollis types: "show listserv global search = "microplasma flavivirus".]

HOLLIS: Subscribers to every private mailing list that's discussed microplasma flavivirus.

[The system requires an Interagency Password. The screen then displays a list of names, a "current hotlist", including "Thomas Paine".]

HOLLIS: A lot of patriotic pseudonyms. More than one Thomas Paine.

[Frank points to the screen.]

FRANK: There.

[Highlighted is an email address: thomas_paine@compunet.srv and alt.desertstorm.syndrome.]

HOLLIS: Subscribes to lists on desert storm, germ warfare, black ops.

[Hollis types in a command and the result is: Eric Swan: 22 Edwel Rd. Indian Spring.]

HOLLIS: He's got a local address and telephone number in the range of the repeater.

FRANK: We've got to get there before the group does.

[McClaren's office. Watts' pager beeps - shows "2000".]


WATTS: Could be. Excuse me.

[Watts leaves. McClaren ponders.]

[swan has taken the antidote syringe out of the plastic bag and looks at it. Taylor watches him. Then a repeated buzzing sounds starts, and Taylor sighs as if losing hope. Swan puts the syringe back in the bag and puts it in the refrigerator. He leaves.]

[swan goes over to an alarm display showing a flashing red light next to "driveway". He punches buttons to switch off the alarm. He walks through plastic sheeting hung from the ceiling, and gets a handgun. He draws back a curtain and sees a car drive up. Outside, it is dark. The car stops. A telephone rings. Swan puts the gun in his waist belt and picks up the phone.]

SWAN: Stop right there or I'll kill her.

FRANK: It's Frank Black.

SWAN: Don't come any closer!

FRANK: Look, I can help you. I want to help you.

[Frank has got out of the car.]

SWAN: I don't need help. I need the truth.

[Frank and Hollis stand by the car.]

FRANK: Listen. I know what they'd do to you. I know other things they've done. But you don't want to kill that girl. You don't want her to die.

[swan has heard Taylor crying out. He looks back through the open door of the metal room. He walks quickly over to her. Taylor appears to be convulsing.]

FRANK: [on phone] Eric? Are you there?

SWAN: How do you know?

[He kneels in front of Taylor.]

SWAN: [into phone] How do you know? How do you know what they've done?

FRANK: [on phone] I know because I was once one of them, until I found out what they are.

[swan starts loosening the straps binding Taylor's hands.]

SWAN: [into phone] Why haven't you told anyone?

FRANK: [on phone] I've tried.

SWAN: No-one listens.

FRANK: We can make them. We can do it together. I'll protect you from them.

[swan has now loosened both straps.]

Frank: [on phone] I'm coming in.

SWAN: No! I got a gun!

[swan walks out of the room, slamming the door behind him, and looks out the window.]

FRANK: Look, I'm coming in.

[Frank starts walking towards the house.]

FRANK: I'm unarmed. You know I'm on your side. [sighs] I think we can make them talk.

HOLLIS: Frank. They'll be here soon.

FRANK: Listen…

[suddenly a shot rings out, showering Swan with broken glass.]

FRANK: Eric, are you all right?

[swan aims his gun.]

[Outside, Frank looks to where the gun was fired from.]

FRANK: Watts! Watts!

[Watts comes out from a wooded area. He's apparently unarmed.]

WATTS: We'll take it from here.

[Hollis has her gun aimed at Watts.]

HOLLIS: This is an FBI crime scene, I'm ordering you to leave.

WATTS: That's my daughter in there!

FRANK: [into phone] Eric, are you there?

SWAN: [on phone] What's happening?

FRANK: [to Watts] You missed.

[Watts looks back as two other men emerge from the wooded area - one of them is Mabius.]

SWAN: [on phone] That her father? Is it?

[swan checks out the window. Watts walks away from Frank.]

SWAN: [on phone] You tell him she's dying.

[Frank shouts at Mabius.]

FRANK: Get out of here! Leave!

[Mabius looks at Watts.]

SWAN: I got the antidote right here, but she's dying - got it?

[Mabius and Watts look at each other. They can hear Swan via Frank's phone.]

SWAN: It's up to him.

[Watts seems undecided. Then another vehicle comes up the driveway and Mabius disappears back into the woods. Watts takes the phone from Frank's hand.]

WATTS: [into phone] Vector 83.2, range 1200 yards. We delivered those co-ordinates to you through extra-military channels along with an order to fire. You challenged the order.

[swan is listening.]

WATTS: [on phone] That challenge was noted and recorded under Article 15, document number BX732, dated 25 February 1991.

[swan sits down.]

WATTS: [into phone] I want my daughter back.

[swan is sat on a bed. Outside, FBI agents get out of the car that's just arrived. McClaren and agents hurry towards the house. Watts hands Hollis the phone and follows them.]

[swan slowly opens the door to the metal room. He gasps when he sees the chair is empty. He looks around but can't see Taylor. The syringe is lying on the floor. As he walks over to it, he passes Taylor who is hiding behind the door. She puts her hand under his chin and, gritting her teeth and using all of her strength, she twists his head, breaking his neck. He falls to the ground, dead.]

[As Watts reaches the house, Taylor is walking towards the door. He opens the door and Taylor puts her arms round him, weeping. He picks her up and cradles her in his arms. He looks back over at Frank.]

WATTS: [voice over] Bless us, oh Lord, for these thy gifts which we are about to receive from thy bounty. And thank you, Lord, for Taylor, whom you returned to us safe and sound in answer to our prayers.

[Dining table. The Watts family - father, mother and all three daughters.]

WATTS: In these troubled times, please show us the way. And forgive us our many trespasses. Amen.


[The family begin their meal, smiles all round, except for Taylor.]

TAYLOR: Daddy? It's true, isn't it? What that man said.

[Watts looks at his daughter. Mrs Watts looks anxious. Taylor continues to look at him, but Watts doesn't, perhaps can't, reply. He can no longer look his daughter in the eye and turns his head, looking down. From outside, through the window, is what should be a happy family scene, but Watts can only clasp his hands together, up against his mouth, in silence.]

[Fade to black.]

Lance Henriksen (Frank Black)

Klea Scott (Emma Hollis)

Guest Starring:

James Marsters (Eric Swan)

Stephen E Miller (Andy McClaren)

Jacinda Barrett (Taylor Watts)

Art Bell (Himself)

Terry David Mulligan (Dr Harvey)


Terry O'Quinn (Peter Watts)


Brendan Fehr (Nick Carfagna)

Jessica Schreier (Mrs Watts)

Bob Wilde (Mabius)


Bill Marchant (David Cougar)

Kaare Anderson (Raid Agent)

Tony Alcantar (Chuck)

David Lewis (FBI Technician)

Laura Mennell (Sorority Sister #1)

Kea Wong (Sorority Sister #2)

Music by Mark Snow

Editor: James Coblentz

Production Designer: Mark Freeborn

Director of Photography: Robert McLachlan

Executive Story Editors: Kay Reindl and Erin Maher

Production Manager: Kathy Gilroy-Sereda

Associate Producer: Jon-Michael Preece

Executive Consultant: Michael Duggan

Co-Producer: Julie Herlocker

Co-Producer: Patrick Harbinson

Co-Producer: Laurence Andries

Co-Producer: Michael R Perry

Co-Producer: Kathy Gilroy-Sereda

Co-Producer: Paul Rabwin

Consulting Producer: Daniel Sackheim

Producer: Thomas J Wright

Co-Executive Producer: Frank Spotnitz

Co-Executive Producer: Ken Horton

Co-Executive Producer: John Peter Kousakis

Written by Michael R Perry

Directed by Thomas J Wright

Executive Producer: Chip Johannessen

Executive Producer: Chris Carter

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