Season 1 Episode 16

The Garden of Forking Paths

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Apr 22, 2010 on ABC

Episode Recap

March 15, 2010 Demetri is in a warehouse, fastened to a chair with a laser targeting site focused on his chest. Nearby, an elaborate mechanism holds Mark's gun, pointed at Demetri's head. Behind Demetri, a wall is covered with an elaborate flowchart showing lines of probability with hundreds of different events and corresponding dates. Olivia brings Charlie to FBI headquarters so that Mark and Janis can question her about her meeting with Dyson Frost at the carnival. Charlie talks about how she and Frost talked about Dr. Seuss, with Frost saying that One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish is his favorite book. Frost then claimed he worked with Mark and gave Charlie a photo of painting. On the back, Mark has written Union Station and an invitation to meet him on that day. Once they're done, Mark accompanies Olivia and Charlie to the elevator. Stan distracts Charlie while Mark talks to Olivia and suggests that they have Charlie meet with a FBI therapist. Olivia insists that their daughter needs stability, not therapy, particularly after seeing Mark die in her flashforward. They start arguing but stop when Charlie returns with Stan. In prison, Alda Herzog meets with Zoey. Zoey demands to know what Alda knows about Demetri's death since it's March 15, the day he's supposed to die. Alda claims that she has already told Zoey everything she knows, but finally admits that she knows more. However, she won't reveal it unless Zoey expedites her hearing so that it takes place immediately. Zoey insists it's possible but Alda tells her that she'd better find a way. As Mark and Stan organize a team to run surveillance at Union Station, Vreede confirms that the painting in Frost's photo is Oedipus and the Sphinx, by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. The painting concerns Oedipus inadvertently bringing about the death of his mother, the very fate he was trying to avoid, and they wonder if what they're doing may very well cause Demetri's death. However, Mark insists on going ahead, remembering his promise to keep Demetri alive. As Demetri starts to move, he notices the mechanism start to trigger the gun and hastily freezes. There's a six-hour timer on the gun that will trigger the mechanism in any case. Six Months Before the Blackout Lucas Hellinger brings Alda Herzog to the warehouse to see Frost. He tells her that they need Frost alive because he's the only one who understands how to create a blackout and generate flashforwards, but they want Alda to dispose of Frost if he becomes unmanageable. Alda is glad to help. They enter the warehouse and find the floor covered with rows of dominoes. Frost is at work and Lucas introduces him to Alda. Lucas explains that Frost was responsible for the Raven River project and is one of the only ones involved who is still alive. Frost informs Lucas that the Blackout is still on track for October 6 and that he's created the first QED device, contained within a simple ring. Frost then plays back a tape he made from a few minutes ago of them approaching the warehouse and discussing his murder, and warns that he'll always be six steps ahead of them. Lucas says that they should all hope it never comes to that, and Frost imperiously tells them to go. As they leave, Alda asks about the dominoes. Frost explains that the single row of white dominoes represents his escape route. He knocks over the dominoes and they watch as the white line threads it's way between the conflicting black lines. Now Frost arrives at the warehouse and advises Demetri not to move. He then explains that the chalk lines on the board are his "Garden of Forking Paths," and each one represents the branch point of possible futures at key decision points. Ever since Raven River, he's charted thousands of them based on the flashforwards that he's engineered. Frost explains that they are at the point where both of them are supposed to die. Demetri wonders why Frost doesn't kill him now, and the scientist explains that he's trying to match his flashforward as closely as possible for fear of inadvertently changing some other factor. If he kills Demetri prematurely, it might not stop his own death. And he hopes that there's still a chance they might both live. Frost explains that he also needs Demetri alive to negotiate his surrender to Mark. Demetri tells him to just negotiate it now, but Frost insists that by the end of the day, one of them will probably be dead. At Union Station, Janis and her team tap into the CCTVs while Mark waits for Frost. At the hospital, Olivia and Bryce finish surgery and she asks the anesthesiologist, Maneesh, about halothane. He explains that it is an older anesthetic that almost no one uses any more. Bruce wonders why she's interested in halothane and Olivia mentions Lloyd. Bryce picks up on the fact that she's seeing Lloyd again, despite the fact she was trying to avoid him, and Olivia insists that they're just discussing things professionally. Zoey manages to get Alda a hearing by having her fake appendicitis. As they go in, Alda covertly exchanges glances with the two window washers outside. Vreede follows up on the death of the man at the homeless shelter and comes to see Olivia. When she wonders how she's involved, Vreede explains that the man had a disposable cell phone that he used to send her a text message. Olivia confirms that it was the message telling her that Mark was drinking in his flashforward. Vreede asks her to come to the morgue and see if she recognizes the man. At the station, a young boy finally approaches Mark and tells him that a man paid him $50 to give Mark a backpack. Inside it, there's a photo of Demetri with 423 written on it, and a cell phone. Frost calls and tells Mark to listen, and explains that his former associates plan to stop him before he can work with Mark to stop the next Blackout. Mark interrupts and Frost snaps at him, then tells him to say a street name. Stan and Janis hear the name and start tracking the location, while Frost figures that he's distracted them. He then gives Mark a series of directions, has him state a second street address, and tells him to set his watch to 4:23 so he knows how long he has until Demetri dies. Mark begins running, ignoring Janis and Stan on the radio headset. He goes to the bathroom, gets rid of his gun and his radio, and finds a hidden zoomcar access par. He then slips out through an air vent, runs through the steam tunnels, and gets outside to the zoomcar. He drives away before Janis can catch up to him. In the courtroom, Judge Sandoz dismisses Zoey's frivolous claim that Alda has appendicitis, and warns her that she could have actions taken against her. As they leave, Alda appears satisfied despite the fact that Zoey wasn't able to get her a hearing. She tells Zoey that all she knows from her flashforward that Demetri is found dead in "building seven." The guards escort her back through the hallway... and the windows explodes thanks to a hidden charge. Alda jumps out the window and makes her escape. 2:17 Mark drives out into the countryside, following Frost's directions, and then gets out of the borrowed vehicle and walks north into the mountains. Olivia and Vreede meet the coroner, Dewey, who tells them that someone removed all identifying marks from the victim, including burning off his fingertips. However, Dewey has removed the corpse's brain and explains that the development suggests that he was a savant. Olivia has never seen the dead man, and Vreede checks out an address book that the victim owned. 1:31 Mark arrives on a barren hillside. Frost, carrying a gun, approaches him and explains that it's time for them to save the world. He points the gun at Mark and explains that his associates want Mark dead, but Frost argued to keep him alive so he could get to March 15 in safety. Mark insists that it's safe now because they've captured the mole, but Frost tells him that he has no idea what's going on. He tells Mark to put on a pair of handcuffs, but Mark asks to take a drink of water first. When Frost agrees, Mark takes a swig of water... and then reveals it's gasoline and spits it in Frost's face. Mark disarms the man and demands to know where Demetri is. Stunned, Frost insists that things aren't going according to his flashforward. Zoey meets with Stan and Janis and tells them about building seven. Janis begins checking out any relevant building sevens. When Mark demands to know where Demetri is, Frost tells him that he gave Charlie what Mark needs to find his partner. He then tells Mark that the woman he sees every day will save him. As Frost starts to explain more, he spots a motorcycle parked in the distance. He tells Mark he was followed, and a shot rings out. Frost is hit in the chest and Mark gets him to cover. Alda, satisfied, refuses to kill Mark per her orders and leaves on the motorcycle. Mark tries to get the dying frost to answer his questions, but all Frost says before he dies is that he did what he did for a reason. Spotting Frost's case, Mark goes through it and finds photographs of men in old-fashioned diving suits and a blueprint for some device. He remembers that all of the items were on the Mosaic board in his flashforward. 1:18 Mark takes the papers and the keys to Frost's SUV and runs to find it. Demetri isn't in Frost's SUV and there are no cell towers within range. Mark checks the GPS unit in Frost's SUV and brings up a list of addresses. One of them is 423 Ingres St. Remembering the number on Demetri's photo and the name of the artist, Mark realizes that it's Demetri's location and programs the GPS to direct him there. Vreede confirms that the dead man's address book belonged to Dr. Julian Ebbing, a neuroscientist who works with savants. Vreede and Olivia talk to the doctor, who doesn't know the dead man and doesn't know why he had his address book. 0:04 Mark arrives at an abandoned arms depot at 423 Ingres St. Meanwhile, Janis has monitored Mark's GPS information request but can't pinpoint his location. Mark manages to get a clear cell phone transmission and calls headquarters, and they tell him about building seven. They realize the building numbers are on the roof and Janis uses satellite imagery to direct him to the proper building. Mark breaks in and finds Demetri strapped into the chair opposite Frost's gun-triggering device. With less than a minute left, Mark tries to disarm the device but realizes that he can't move the gun from its perch without setting off the motion sensors. As he grabs the gun and tries to carefully move it, Demetri realizes that he'll die as he was warned: with Mark holding his own gun as the murder weapon. However, Mark remembers what Frost told Charlie about Dr. Seuss. He starts to pull out the wires but hesitates, and Demetri tells him to do it. Mark carefully pulls out the first, second, red, and blue wires in the proper order, shutting off the motion sensor. He then manages to pull the gun out of line with Demetri's head just as the timer clicks to zero. The bullet plows into the wall behind Demetri. As Mark frees Demetri, he sets off a hidden trigger, and an acid spray wipes the board of Frost's probability calculations. Vreede and Olivia stop for coffee after meeting with Ebbing. A man comes up behind Olivia as she orders and recites her specific coffee order. When she wonders how he knows, the man, Gabriel McDow, explains that he's stood there before when she's ordered coffee. When Olivia points out that she's never been to that cart before, Gabriel insists that he's been there with her on this particular day many times in the past. He starts talking about Raven River and how his dead friend wanted to talk to her. Vreede tries to hold him, but Gabriel insists that nobody should touch him. He warns Olivia that the dominoes are falling, and then runs off before Vreede can stop him. Stan brings Zoey and a FBI team to the arms depot. Demetri and Zoey embrace while Mark tells Stan and Janis what happened. As they examined the board, Mark remembers a few of the things that were on the board based on his brief glimpse. The most ominous was the event at the end of all the probability lines: the words "The End," dated December 12, 2016.
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