Synopsis by Josh Ralske
The nuclear bomb is detonated, out in the desert. Kim (Elisha Cuthbert) sees the blast and, assuming Jack (Kiefer Sutherland) is dead, sits by the roadside and cries. Eventually she makes her way to a closed convenience store, where she asks the owner to let her in so she can use the bathroom. Kim gets caught in the middle when a panicked local man (Lombardo Boyar) comes to the store to get supplies after seeing the explosion. Jack gets picked up by chopper and taken back to CTU. Michelle (Reiko Aylesworth) interrogates a confused Syed Ali (Francesco Quinn) about the incriminating recording, which he convincingly insists is a fake. But Tony (Carlos Bernard) questions Michelle's experience, telling her their experts have verified its authenticity. Palmer (Dennis Haysbert) meets with the Joint Chiefs, and plans to address Congress to ask for a declaration of war. When Jack arrives, Michelle tells him she thinks someone is trying to trick Palmer into starting a war in the Middle East. As Ali is being taken away, Jack goes to question him. Just after telling Jack the recording is a fake, Ali is shot dead by a sniper. When Jack tells Tony that Ali might have been telling the truth, Tony feels that Jack is trying to usurp his authority. Jack calls Palmer directly to tell him about his suspicions, and Palmer says he'll have a few hours to find evidence before the invasion begins. Mike (Jude Ciccolella) isn't happy about Palmer's decision to delay the invasion. Jack gets a mysterious phone call from someone claiming they have proof that the tape's a fake, and demanding that Jack turn over Kate (Sarah Wynter) in exchange for the evidence. He convinces Michelle to help him sneak Kate out of CTU.