11:00 pm to 12:00 am

We open with the mushroom cloud. Everyone at CTU watches the screen. The room is silent. Multiple images flash across the screen. The president watches from Airforce One. Lynne joins Palmer. Palmer is grim. Kim watches the blast and cries. She sits on a curb in the dark and continues crying.

Jack lights flares to mark his position in the desert. A chopper comes to get him. Jack gets on the chopper. The pilot confirms that Jack is returning to CTU. He asks the pilot to contact Tony and tell him he survived and to get in touch with his daughter. The pilot tells him that radio transmissions are a no go. He’ll have to wait until he gets there.

Back at CTU, Tony thanks the troops for their hard work and reminds them of the sacrifice George made. Tony says that millions of lives were saved and that’s no small sacrifices. He knows they are tired, but they have to decipher the Cyprus recording. Yusef asks Tony about the investigation. He needs to report to his office and has nothing to report except that he has been excluded. Auda reminds Tony that his people helped raid Ali’s apartment.

Michelle questions Ali about the recording from the hard drive of his computer. The men he met with are high-ranking officials from 3 Arab countries. The recording proves that he conspired with them to detonate a nuclear weapon on US soil. Michelle tells him that if he doesn’t answer their questions now an interrogator will do it at Guantanimo. Ali says he wasn’t in Cyprus in April. Ali asks why he would lie about this when he told the truth about the bomb. Michelle says to protect his country. Ali says the bomb was a second wave opportunity. He did not meet with those men.

An expert gives Tony the results of an analysis of the recording. The voices are legitimate. Tony asks about pieces of recordings. The expert says that this process leaves traces, mismatches. The expert says that it is an actual recording. Michelle comes in and tells them that Ali didn’t meet with the men. He was in Berlin on the day in question – not Cypress. Tony says that he thinks they killed one of his sons. Michelle thinks he may be telling the truth. Carrie doesn’t trust Michelle’s expertise as an interrogator. Tony is going to pass on to Palmer what Ali says and the expert’s findings.

The Chief of Staff tells the president that CTU managed to detonate the bomb within a few yards of the expected target. Palmer wants to give Bauer’s daughter his condolences. Palmer is told that Jack is alive. Lynne comes in with news that the recording is real. She tells him that Ali is denying the recording (but leaves out the fact that Ali says he was in Berlin). Palmer is ready to make a decision. He is going to issue a statement that there was a nuclear weapon but there were no casualties. He is going to call an emergency session of congress at which time he will ask for a declaration of war.

Tony goes to Michelle. He wants a report before she sends it to the hill. Tony asks if she’s all right – referring to her and Carrie. Michelle says she is fine. Tony says he shouldn’t have put her in that position. She doesn’t have enough experience.

Palmer meets with the Joint Chiefs about military options and first strikes. Palmer asks if the first strikes can be under way by the time he addresses the nation in the morning. Lynne tells Palmer that a prime minister is calling – it is the second time since the bomb was detonated. If he doesn’t take the call he may read between the lines. He doesn’t know that his country is about to be invaded.

The primer minister tells him that the leader of his country wishes to express his horror of the bomb and is grateful the bomb was found in time. They are going to cooperate in prosecuting Ali. They are going to punish Second Wave. The Deputy Prime Minister urges Palmer not to take rush action.

Ali is moved. Jack arrives back at CTU. They cross in the hall. Ali becomes violent when he sees Jack. Jack wants to get in touch with Kim. Tony gives Jack the number of someone who is going to Jack’s sister’s house and will contact him when Kim arrives. Jack calls the number. Michelle watches Jack as he makes the call. Carrie watches Michelle. Michelle tells Jack she’s glad he’s back. Michelle tells Jack that Palmer is planning military action based on the recording that may be a fake. Jack wants to talk to Kim. Michelle tells Jack that he can read Ali better than anyone – he broke Ali. Jack tells Michelle to get in touch with Sergeant Griggs.

Jack goes to talk to Ali. Ali is taken to the transport vehicle. Jack makes it in time. Jack tells him they didn’t kill his son. They staged it. Jack needs to know if the Cypress recording is a fake. Ali says what he told the woman is true. Shots are fired. Ali is on the ground. He has been shot. Someone is on one of the roofs.

Jack tells Tony that LAPD has set up a perimeter. Tony wants to know how they knew. Jack says after this – he believes that Ali was telling the truth. Jack and Tony bicker over this fact. Jack says that Palmer will be making very serious decisions based on this information. Tony tells Jack that with him going against the grade is some kind of virtue. Tony tells Jack it’s time to go get his daughter and to let them handle this.

Sniveling/crying Kim reaches a closed liquor store. She uses a pay phone. All circuits are busy. A man approaches in the dark. She asks to use the bathroom. She says she’ll be quick. He lets her in the store. The man locks the door and tells Kim the bathroom is in the back.

The President’s Military briefing continues. A five-week simultaneous ground assault will result in 5 to 10,000 American Casualties. China and Russian intervention are considered. Jack calls. Palmer takes the call. Jack tells him that Ali was assassinated while they were transporting him. Jack tells him that he doesn’t believe that the recording was made. Jack tells him that Ali says he was in Berlin. He tells him that authentication is never 100%. Jack believes he was assassinated because he was telling the truth. Palmer doesn’t want to base a military action on faulty information but he needs a better reason to stop it. Palmer tells Jack to come up with better refuting information.

Michelle receives a call from Jack. Jack tells her that Palmer won’t stop the action but he needs more proof. Michelle tells Jack about Auda and that Tony didn’t want him talking to anyone. Jack is going to check Auda out. Kate sees Jack. They talk (I thought you weren’t coming back yada yada).

The Chief of Staff tells Palmer that the Joint Chiefs are cutting down their material list. Palmer needs a few more minutes. He tells him that the conversation with Bauer is running through his head. He worries that they are moving too fast. He doesn’t want to make a mistake that their children will have to pay for. The Chief of staff says that every military expert is saying this is the right thing to do. Palmer counters with except Jack Bauer. Palmer doesn’t want to do this to satisfy someone’s bloodlust. The Chief of Staff says he’ll tell the General he’ll call when he’s ready.

Jack goes into the men’s room to talk to Auda. Jack wants to ask question about the evidence found in Ali’s apartment. Jack wants to know if the evidence was compromised before it arrived at CTU. Auda wants to know what was found. He doesn’t cooperate and leaves. Jack receives a call from someone saying that he is the only one who can prove that Ali wasn’t in Cypress. He killed Ali so that he would have to deal with him. The man wants Kate Warner. He says to get Kate Warner out of CTU and bring her to a warehouse. Jack says his access to CTU is limited. Thirty minutes isn’t enough time.

Kim finishes up in the bathroom. An altercation between 2 men can be heard. Kim creeps behind a row of shelves. A man wants into the store. The man inside says the store is closed. The man persists. The man inside picks up the phone and calls 911. The man outside leaves. Kim says it is starting. The man asks what she means. Kim says nothing. The man outside crashes through the door. The two men fight. Kim pulls a gun – tells the attacker to let go of him and get out. The attacker says I’m just trying to get to the mountains. He turns to Kim and asks for the gun. Kim keeps the gun pointed to him. She tells him to go. The man grabs a cart and loads it with things.

Michelle receives a call from Jack. Auda has trust issues. Jack tells her there is another way to prove it. But he needs her help – but she has to trust him.

At the liquor store the man says his wife is 7 months pregnant. They can’t stay there. He insists on paying. He asks for the TV to be turned on. The news report states that there may have been a nuclear explosion. The police arrive. The police talk to the man’s wife. He and the storeowner have an altercation. The gun is fired. The owner falls shot. The attacker grabs Kim.

Kate is being debriefed. Michelle goes into the room. She asks Baker if she can get a copy of a missing page from a report he filed. She insists it’s important. Jack sneaks in to get Kate. He tells her it is urgent. Kate thought everything was over. Jack says it’s not. Carrie calls Tony. She tells him that Jack is trying to remove Kate from CTU.

Kim tries to help the shot storeowner. Kate and Jack try to leave and are stopped by Tony. Tony pulls a gun. Jack says to put the gun down. Tony won't until he tells him what he is doing. Jack punches Tony. Jack and Kate run.