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Ghost in the Machine
Air Date August 6, 2007
Written by Eric Bress & J. Mackye Gruber
Director Guy Norman Bee
Episode number 209
Next episode House of Cards


After the attack, Lori wants to go on a scary expedition to test her courage. The group gets larger, and the experience gets worse, for everyone.

Synopsis


Kyle arrives at the warehouse to see that Tom Foss has returned. Kyle confronts him about the warning he left for Declan. Tom insists that while he did threaten Declan with her picture, he did not attack her. Tom refuses to say where he went, and Kyle refuses to continue training.

A flashback to fifteen years ago shows Zzyzx, where Adam Baylin is in his office looking at a monitor showing the experimental fetus. Brian Taylor enters, and Adam tells him that he will discontinue the project if this one fails to survive extraction. Brian tells him it will be their salvation, and asks him not to give up. They go to check the situation, where William Kern is standing with security guards. William refuses Adam access, because his emotions towards the subject have ruined his judgment. When Adam protests, Kern tells him that he is no longer in charge of Zzyzx.

Declan explains to Kyle his distrust of Tom Foss, while saying that Lori plans to go to the woods near Victor Falls, right next to the ruins of Zzyzx. Kyle tries to convince everyone not to go, but Andy is going with Josh, Jessi arrives reprogrammed to be attached to Kyle, so Amanda has to go too. Exasperated, Lory says "And then, there were seven."

They arrive at the campsite where the hunter was killed, with Lori already drunk from cans she is emptying. Jessi begins to have flashbacks to the day she was there, and Declan does not understand why she is suddenly ignoring him. Amanda announces that Lori just went into a large pipe that leads underground. Kyle secretly tells Declan that it is a way into Zzyzx, but he doesn't know how he knows that. They go in to find Lori, who is taunting them from the depths.

Declan admits he's claustrophobic. Kyle sees Adam rush by and has a flashback. Kyle watches as Adam rushes to his office and puts a box in a hidden wall safe. Kern finds him and has the guards take him and Brian to the main hall. Brian helps Adam escape.

Above ground, the remaining kids compare themselves with Scooby-Doo characters. Jessi is left out, never having seen the series, and she decides to go in after Kyle. To keep her from being with Kyle, Amanda follows too.

Kyle has another flashback and follows Foss as a security guard checking on the big tank for 781227. Tom starts to play a tape of classical music, but Kern enters and peavishly shuts it off. He tells Tom to prepare for a “data input retention test". Tom tells him "You know, one of these days, he's going to tell you what you can do with your tests." Kern orders him "Do your job."

Josh fails to get a fire started by rubbing sticks. Andy complains that he brought Sour Patch candy, but no matches. Andy and Josh have an awkward conversation, with Andy saying he plays too much G-Force. She tells him that fear is a waste of time. She is becoming cold.

Lori is lost and afraid. Jessi asks Amanda about her blond hair and why Kyle likes her, which becomes an argument. As Jessi is loudly and threateningly saying that she has a special connection with Kyle, an earth tremor activates the security doors. Lori thinks she is trapped, and Declan thinks so too. Sounds come from behind her that turn out to be Amanda. Kyle has another flashback. William Kern and a technician are doing tests that seem to be failing. Tom watches as Kern makes a phone call about the malfunctioning of 781227.

Josh tries making jokes, then suggests going back to the car, but Andy says she's not cold, despite shivering under multiple coats. Jessi wanders alone into a large room, where she sees flames all around, with the Zzyzx symbol on the wall as she had drawn it for Nicole in therapy.

Kyle and Declan, and Lori and Amanda suddenly meet in a hallway. They find out that Jessi is still wandering alone. The floor cracks open in the room where Jessi is, and gas comes hissing up. Terrified, she has further flashbacks of flames around her as she sits beside a large broken tank, looking at her own hand and arm covered with pink goo.

Methane gas is also leaking where the others are standing, and Kyle doesn't know how long they have to live. Declan asks Kyle to ask the ghosts to show him the way out. Kyle suddenly sees a map showing an exit for them, but he goes in search of Jessi. Kyle has another flashback. William Kern is told that 781227 had just downloaded the Zzyzx computer's entire database. William orders the termination of 781227, but Tom says that he won't let him do it.

Josh is with Andy in the car. Andy asks what is up with Josh's attitude, and Josh asks what's up with her no tolerance for his jokes. Josh suggests counting to three and each say what's on their minds. Josh says that he likes her, while Andy says she has cancer. Their conversation is cut short by calls from Lori, and they go to help them.

Kyle continues to search for Jessi, finding her huddled against the wall in the room. He extends a hand down to her, and she takes it with relief. He carries her out, but returns to Adam's office to open his safe and remove the box he had seen in the flashback. He sees Adam nodding approval as he leaves. Kyle stumbles to escape the gas and has another flashback. Tom has the body of 781227 on a stretcher, trying desperately to revive him. Kyle makes it outside only to pass out, and Amanda manages to revive him first with mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, then kissing him as he does breathe again. Jessi is huddling in a blanket, heartbroken.

Back at The Rack, Lori apologizes to them, and Kyle says it's okay. Kyle leaves as Declan joins her and they joke about the healing power of song. Kyle finds Jessi out back, waiting alone. She tells him that she saw strange things and believes she caused bad things to happen there. Kyle tells her it was "just the gas, messing with all our minds." Jessi tells him that when he reached out for her, it was the first time she didn't feel alone, and thanks him for saving her life.

Andy tells Josh to forget about what she said, and orders him not to tell anyone. Kyle talks with Amanda, saying that he almost died going back in and he didn't get the box. Amanda tells him that she took care of the box, because it seemed important to him, and gives it to him. Kyle takes it to Foss at the warehouse, where he is still trying to figure out Baylin's coded message and how someone changed it. Kyle sees the same tape player that Tom had at Zzyzx, and tells him that now he knows that Tom has always been there for him.

Kyle returns to the flashback of Kern expelling Adam from Zzyzx. He sees that Brian was only pretending for Adam, that he was part of the plot. Kern says that one day they will have to get rid of Adam altogether. Kyle realizes that the flashbacks were from the information he as 781227 had downloaded, and that it must have been Brian who changed the message to make him distrust Foss.

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