Isabella is dreaming. She awakens to find the small private jet flying quietly somewhere over the Atlantic, most of its passengers missing. Burnes lies dead nearby, his body riddled with the bullets that mysteriously disappeared prior to takeoff. Further in the cabin, she finds Elsa tossing and turning as if caught up in a nightmare of her own. The only other occupant seems to be an old, kindly-looking black lady, knitting a gun from fuzzy black yarn. The lady engages Isabella in light conversation, suggesting that they would be important to each other in the days ahead.
In the waking world, the team’s plane eventually lands at an air strip in Atlanta, where they are greeted by an ExCorp security team under the command of Victor Gedding. Gedding arranges a debriefing and provides the captain with her new orders, to proceed immediately by air to Amarillo, Texas, then by helicopter to a company facility outside of Wheeler. She is expected to take command of units on site and organize a containment mission into the underground bunker beneath the facility. Isabella attempts to give Elsa and her sister into the care of local operatives, but soon discovers that she is unable to part from Elsa by more than a couple hundred meters without becoming violently ill. Ila remains in Keating’s care, since he still has a bullet wound in his left shoulder, and Elsa and her mother remain with the team as they depart for northern Texas.
In the airport, Isabella also encounters Miss Rhianna, the woman from her dream, who demostrates a small degree of knowledge regarding the team’s current disposition and provides her with a mysterious phone number.
In Chicago, Ethan and Athena visit Cal‘s apartment to search for a series of files he remembers seeing labeled with the mysterious symbol from the glass disc. Cal, whose home turns out to be a computer hacker’s paradise, is unable to locate the files, however, and insists that he can retrieve them from the Pegasus Group‘s internal system if they sneak into the lab. Since the lab will be occupied until after noon, the trio then devide to visit Athena’s scheduled interview with one of the individuals she was studying for her book, a woman named Irena Hayes who mysteriously survived an automobile accident that killed her husband and teenage son about ten years ago. When Irena returned to her life after recovery, she noticed that many things were different – including evidence that her son was actually the wrong gender! Believing that her sanity was slipping, it was several years before she spoke about it to anyone at all, and Athena was quick to recognize parallels to a certain event from her own murky past. During the interview, she also discovered that Irena had visited with Miss Rhianna Baerns, her own presumably deceased grandmother.
In Wheeler, Sunny and Dr. Barnes are stopped by the local sheriff on the way into town and detained until ExCorp field units arrive to escort them to the facility. The pair of them are held in custody until Isabella’s eventual arrival, at which point they join the command team and assembled assets inside the building. While Greta and Elliot greet each other as old friends, Isabella begins to assemble the story of their common background, and she and Elsa and Sunny all discover that they visited this very facility when they were very young. Before the group can launch its immediate mission, however, Isabella’s father – Dr. Noah Reid – arrives to inocculate the group against potentially hazardous airborne agents in the underground lab. Isabella confronts her father, and he explains that Project Cronos was an attempt to utilize a unique mutogenic enzyme from her own biochemistry to treat terminally ill children. The project was decommissioned in 1992, but the lab was apparently still in use. He warns them that genetically mutated test subjects may have been stored on site and that one or more of them may have escaped into the rest of the bunker.