Hiding out in a warehouse, Jack, Sloane, Vaughn, Lauren and Sydney form a plan to frame The Covenant for Sydney's extraction. They decide to offer to trade Sydney for the Rambaldi device, since that would be something The Covenant would ask for. Sloane suggests that Sydney contact Dr. Edward Brazzel, a researcher who has invented a non-invasive technique to treat long-term amnesia. Later, at the site of the coordinates that Sydney learned from Lindsey, Jack and Syd find a severed hand bearing a Rambaldi tattoo. Lauren returns to the CIA and tells Lindsey of The Covenant's "demand;" Lindsey is suspicious of Lauren's story, but he agrees to make the exchange. Jack, Syd, and Vaughn visit Dr. Brazzel, who explains that his technique involves using a mix of drugs to fool the brain into a lucid dream state from which memories can be accessed. Entering the dream state, Syd experiences a semi-random string of memories, which includes following the men who abducted her after her fight with the fake Francie. They take her to Room 47, but Lauren guides her away before she can explore further. Later, out of the dream state, Syd tells Jack and Vaughn of her dream that she cut off Lazarey's hand. Syd also reveals that Lauren strangled her in the dream, but Brazzel says it's unclear if it was Lauren, or simply a representation of someone else. Marshall examines the hand and learns that the person it belonged to was alive four months ago; Jack theorizes that it is Lazarey's hand, and that the video of Sydney murdering Lazarey was a fake. Using DNA from the Kremlin, Marshall learns that the hand is indeed Lazarey's, which means that Sydney didn't kill him. However, elsewhere Sloane meets with Lindsey to "confirm" that The Covenant extracted Sydney. Lindsey wants Sloane to arrange for Sydney to be assassinated during the exchange; Lindsey says ominously that he knows what Sloane is up to, and he hands Sloane an envelope containing his proof of Sloane's end game. Meanwhile, Sydney goes back under the therapy to see what happened to her. She again finds Lauren, who tells her to leave. Sydney refuses, and as they fight, Lauren becomes a double of Sydney. After a struggle, Sydney shoots the double and hurries to Room 47. Entering, she immediately stops, completely shocked by what she sees.
(Quotes in italics are from Sydney's dream.)
Sydney: I suppose I owe you a "thank you."
Sloane: Sydney, as long as you're alive, you'll never owe me a thing.
Sloane: My foundation gives grants to various researchers. One of these men has in development a non-invasive therapy for treating long-term severe amnesia.
Sydney: If this therapy works, why didn't you mention it before now?
Sloane: Well, Sydney, until now I didn't think you'd be willing to accept my help.
Lauren (to Sydney): So, I was an idiot. Michael tried to tell me about Lindsey, but I couldn't believe what he was saying. So ... so, I did what I always do. I followed the rules.
Sydney: What happens if what we're looking for isn't metal?
Jack: Then we're screwed; it isn't an unfamiliar situation.
Sydney: I've been through too much with him: I don't trust that man. I still can't believe that you don't feel the same.
Jack: What I'm feeling is irrelevant. In conspiring to save you from the NSC, Sloane's also given us all the ammunition we'd ever need to invalidate his pardon agreement. He's put his life in our hands.
Sydney: What are we saying they want?
Sloane: What about the Rambaldi device?
Sydney: You'd like that, wouldn't you.
Sloane: Sydney, I know what you're thinking. Why don't you ask yourself, if the device was so valuable to me why did I let it go?
Sydney: For your freedom. You traded it for your pardon. Here's your chance to get it back.
Jack: Once we make the exchange, the device will be destroyed. No one will have it.
Lauren: I know how hard this might be for you ...
(Syd punches her.)
Sydney: That was for turning me in to Lindsey.
Jack: I used to think you didn't have much of a spine.
Vaughn: And has that assessment changed?
(Jack smiles ever so slightly.)
Brazzel: I wasn't expecting you until Tuesday, and, um, uh . . . . then I realized that it is, it's Tuesday. You've come to me at a really awkward time . . .
Brazzel: I don't know anything about you, except that I'm not supposed to know anything about you.
Jack: Suffice to say there are people who are under the impression that my daughter has committed a crime. Her memories are the only things that can exonerate her.
Brazzel: Be aware that if you encounter a new memory, it might be traumatic.
Sydney: But it won't necessarily be real.
Brazzel: Oh, it will be to you.
Sydney: You don't have a wedding ring.
Vaughn: I thought we'd go to Santa Barbara first and see how that went . . .
Sydney: You're not married?
Vaughn: You really hit your head, didn't you?
Vaughn: She was knocked unconscious after the fight. How can she remember anything that happened after that?
Brazzel: Because unconsciously the mind can still establish transhistorical accounts of the real world.
Jack: Meaning even with her eyes closed, her other senses were alert?
Brazzel: Yes, thank you. And based upon those senses, her brain will construct an accurate but incomplete memory of the events that followed.
Kaya: I was in a tangent once.
Jack: How nice for you.
Brazzel: She's still in beta, but she's dreaming . . . that just doesn't happen.
Sydney: I can't help it, I just miss you. I do.
Vaughn: You know we can't do this.
Sydney: Give me a break, it's a dream - we can do whatever we want. At least, I can.
Jack: Forensic analysis leads Marshall to believe that whoever this hand belonged to was alive as recent as four months ago.
Sydney: It couldn't have been Lazarey because I killed him last year.
Jack: Unless, you didn't.
Lindsey: I plan on making the trade. During the exchange, I want Sydney Bristow taken out.
Sloane: Ah, I see. She has something on you.
Sloane: What guarantee do I have that this isn't some form of entrapment?
Lindsey: Because I know what you're up to, Mr. Sloane. I can see your big picture. I know your endgame. I even have proof.
Jack: You're sure the DNA matched Lazarey's?
Lauren: Yes. Which means that Sydney did not kill him - Lindsey has nothing on her. She can come home.
Sydney: I've never heard of a Saint Aidan.
Dixon: They're hard to find.
Weiss: Syd, you made it! I hope you're ready for an expensive lesson in the art of gambling--
Sydney: I'm looking for that building.
Weiss: Try the kitchen.
Sydney Double: You think it's an accident we don't remember anything?
Sydney: What happened to me?
Sydney Double: Trust Lazarey.
I gave up months ago trying to determine much about what's actually happening on this show, but I'm very glad that this episode wasn't what I expected from the preview. (Lately, I usually don't even watch the previews, but I made the mistake of watching this one.) When I saw that Syd finds Lauren in the dream state, I recalled that JJ assured us that the situation would not be as simple as Lauren being evil. However, we should have expected that her true allegiance would be questioned, probably more than once.
The new info about Lindsey - that Syd unknowingly has dirt on him - is a pleasant surprise. Not surprising for his character, but surprising that the Jerk In Power story actually has more to it. (Gasp!) Although, I'd expect an evil character to be more clever; the scene where ordered the people to check the location of the coordinates again bordered on pathetic.
I wonder how long it took the writers to think of this dreams/drugs way for Syd to try (key word: try) to regain her memory. Once again the writers prove they are masters of telling us nothing: anything learned in the dream may or may not be true. As the doctor so accurately stated, "It's unclear . . ." Sometimes I question whether they are trying to create a mystery, or if they simply have no idea what's going to happen next.
* Why did Syd have to be so far away from the others during the dream therapy? Why did the doctor have to communicate with her through headphones?
* What was the purpose of Kaya in this episode? Comic relief?
* "St. Aidan" was also written on the cake at Sydney's birthday party.