On the run again from the authorities, Jack steals a car in the hospital parking garage. A handy laptop was just lying there, fully charged, and waiting. Jack is able to upload the information from the ‘borrowed’ security disk onto the computer, and finds an image of his assailant – and Burnett’s assassin. Jack forwards the picture to Renee, trying to earn her trust, yet again. He tells her the same thing he told Larry, that he was set up and the game is not over.
In other news, Hodges’ second-in-command dude actually has a name, Seaton. They discuss the potential plan for setting off “weapons” at various “targets.” Hodges professes his great displeasure at having to hurt anyone for their cause. We can’t tell if that rings true or not, we just want to tell him “Oh boo-F-ing-hoo!” Seriously! Maybe he’d cry real tears if he knew that Renee just told Jack that the Mighty Quinn is connected to Starkwood (Hodges’ defense consulting empire) as a black ops sorta dude.
At the White House, Allison Taylor – fearless leader – has changed clothes. This does not happen in the 24-verse that often. What’s next? She’ll order Chinese? Oh, these times, they are a-changing. Of course, Jack has changed clothes more than once since his day began, but, well, he’s Jack! So, in fresh duds, Allison and Olivia discuss strategies as is befitting Olivia’s shiny new position as Special Advisor to the President. Ethan joins them, delivering the unsettling news about the Bauer/Burnett Debacle. The President is mightily pissed off, and poor Ethan slinks away.
Of course, the Bauer/Burnett Debacle is front page news at the FBI. Morris O’Brian has come to collect Chloe but is told instead that she is under arrest for – all together now – “Helping Jack!” Poor dear Chloe, all she ever does is help Jack, and what does she get in return? (Besides a world rid of one less terrorist) She gets “jack-shi*t.” Besides Morris raising hell about Chloe, the office is “jacked”-up looking for Jack. It’s a real man-hunt now, and a woman-hunt evidently, as Janis is spying on Renee, reporting her every move back to Larry. As Renee tries to leave the building, she too is arrested. You all know why.
Janis suggests to Larry that although she personally cannot crack the computer encryption that Renee used to send Jack information, Chloe certainly can. And failing that (after all Chloe is a supposed no-goodnick), her husband Morris is also handy with a computer. Larry asks Morris for help; Morris hesitates, and then sets a deal for Chloe, a clean record and immunity. And then, he works his hacking and cracking mojo, and within a minute he has the information they need. They realize Jack’s next move, and they alert all sorts of TAC teams and the D.C. police. Not surprisingly, Chloe is a bit pissy when she realizes that Morris compromised Jack’s situation just to get her out of trouble.
One of the juicy tidbits of intel that Renee had passed on to Jack regarding Starkwood and the Mighty Quinn, was that Senator “Red” Mayer had his own suspicions about Starkwood and had been investigating the organization. This is Jack’s engraved invitation to pay a visit to his favorite Capitol Hill pal.
Oh, and what a visit! After Red discovers Jack in his home, Jack explains that he just wanted to go down to the basement and hang with the kids, maybe have a Popsicle, maybe sit in the circle, trade jokes with Hyde, and perhaps help Fez with some INS matters.
“Oh you’re a dumb-ass”
“But – but…”
“Now look, you’re going to pick up all this mess, why are you running my printer anyway? You’re going to clean this up and then go fill up my car out of your OWN POCKET!”
“But – but – look, Red…”
“It’s my boot against your ass in about two seconds!!”
Finally Jack explains why he’s there, and asks Mayer to look through his findings on Starkwood. Together they make a connection between Juma, Starkwood, and horrid bio-weapon trials that resulted in nasty deaths in Sangala. Surprisingly and somewhat pleasingly, Jack and Mayer have a conversation about duty and regret. No yelling, no posturing, no thigh-shooting. The 24-verse smiles upon these two for a moment.
Then there’s a knock at the door. “Lemme in, it’s Kelso!” Neither move.
Jack and Mayer ignore the greeting.
Still, Jack and Mayer do not open the door.
Jack and Mayer salute each other with popsicles and continue working.
Oops, that does it. Jack is ready to bolt, but Mayer convinces him that perhaps he should not run, that Mayer has the clout to protect him and they can further investigate Starkwood together. They agree on this, and Mayer goes to answer the door. At this point we’re hoping that the whole thing was not a ploy of Mayer’s to betray Jack. The heart-to-heart of two minutes ago seemed deep and real, but hey…this is 24.
And because it is 24, we do not expect Mayer to open the door to the Mighty Quinn, be gunned down and leave a sickening smear of blood on the wall as he sinks to the floor – dead. Again, Jack is on the run, with Quinn giving chase.
Within running distance there is a convenient empty construction site. Quinn follows a trail of blood (Jack had cut his arm during the melee at Mayer’s house) to an office trailer at the site, and nearly empties his automatic weapon into whatever closets or hiding spaces he imagines Jack to be cornered in. Then suddenly he loses his balance as the whole trailer begins to move and as the camera pans out we see what we’ve already guessed, Jack is in the cab of a bulldozer and is tipping the trailer over! Soon Jack is out and scuffling with Quinn. It’s quite a fight. Then, when there’s some distance between them, Jack grabs a convenient screwdriver and throws it on target at Quinn’s chest.
Not so Mighty now, Quinn is coughing up blood from the fatal wound. Jack advises him that he’s dying, and might as well give up the ETA of the weapons. With a last gasp, Quinn tells him that weapons are “already here.” After Quinn dies, Jack finds Quinn's cell phone and a convenient message on it: “Port of Alexandria.” After a quick call to Tony to set up a rendezvous, Jack is on the run again, all thoughts of popsicles melted away as he races to keep the world safe for democracy once more.