Steven Culp on "Longmire"
Episode: An Incredibly Beautiful Thing
Ellis Hinkley, bespectacled and balding, stocks cigarettes behind the counter at the gas station convenience store. SLAM! Bloodied hands hit the window by the cash register. A young woman with tangled blonde hair and wild eyes peers in at Ellis like a strange apparition. The bell over the door jangles as she wanders into the store in a mud-smeared sundress with scratched and bloody bare feet. Dazed and sobbing, she begs Ellis for help. They're coming! They followed her!!! She asks if Ellis has a gun. Kindly reassuring her that he'll get help, Ellis calls the Sheriff's office and asks Ruby, the dispatcher, to send Walt or a deputy. As if suddenly waking from a dream, the young woman inquires how much for milk? Before Ellis can answer there's the screech of brakes outside. Terrified, the woman runs out the door. Ellis looks out the window and scribbles numbers on a notepad on the counter, then hurries out the door.
A while later, the Sheriff's battered Bronco pulls up at the service station.
Sheriff Walt Longmire pauses in the doorway, calling Ellis' name, anybody here? No answer; the store is eerily empty. Walt notices something on the floor and draws his gun. He moves cautiously up the aisle to the cash register. Nothing.
Walt steps slowly out of the store gun in hand, and scans the service station. A dark storm is looming and the vast Wyoming sky is thick with clouds. Something catches Walt's eye, blood oozing out from under the tire rack. Thunder rumbles as Walt holsters his gun and pulls down tires from the pile - one after another - until he finds it: Ellis Hinkley's dead body with blood on his chest.
At the scene a while later, Deputy Victoria "Vic" Moretti grabs a kit from her truck and heads for the store passing Deputy Branch Connally snapping photos at the tire rack. Ruby arrives and bursts into tears when she spots the body. Sobbing, she apologizes to Walt; she had no idea Ellis was in danger! Walt gently points out that she is the closest they have to an eyewitness; what does she remember? Ruby tries to focus - Ellis told her there was a distraught young lady and he needed help. She might have heard the woman in the background asking him the price of milk. Ruby breaks down again. Ellis was a good man! She's so sorry! Walt assures her that she has nothing to be sorry for.
Inside the store, Vic swabs the floor for evidence. Walt enters, and Vic shows him the footprints she assumes belong to the woman. Walt can tell whoever made the prints was barefoot. Vic discovers that the cash register is filled with money; robbery wasn't the motive. Branch points out that it could have been a hold up that was interrupted. Walt spots a stuffed jackalope head on the wall and pulls a tiny surveillance camera out of its mouth. Bingo!
Minutes later, they play back the young woman's paranoid scene on the store monitor. In the video the girl runs out the door and Walt wonders what did she just see? Branch suggests they get a screen grab of the girl out to local news for identification. Walt agrees, then noticing that Ellis wrote something down, he looks on the counter. The sheet of paper Ellis tore off was not found on his body, but the pad is still there.
Later at the Sheriff's office, Vic etches the pad with a pencil for an impression of the numbers. 1-7-7-8 - part of a license plate number. 17 - means Cumberland County. Vic wonders if an angry boyfriend or husband killed Ellis for intervening in a domestic dispute. Branch suggests the crime is related to "that thing" in South Dakota. Walt is confused. Branch needles him about not reading the newspaper. There's been a string of robberies by a couple on a Bonnie and Clyde style rampage. Walt tells Branch to tap his contacts and find out what kind of car the couple is driving. The girl in the video is their only lead, and they have to find her now.
At the Red Pony bar shortly after, Walt finds Henry Standing Bear in the back room untangling a rat's nest of cables, looking for a better cable for the singer whose mic keeps cutting out. Walt jokes that Henry should take his time, the crowd never seemed happier. Henry nudges Walt, when will he play again? Walt's reply is chilly: when he feels like it. Walt gets down to business. When is the last time Henry tracked anyone? Henry stares at him. Seriously? Flashback to:
A dark rainy night; Henry is driving close behind another car.
The car pulls over and Henry watches a man get out. It's Walt!
In the present at The Red Pony, Henry asks who he'll be tracking this time. Walt fills him in on the possible murder suspect: a young woman in her early 20s, the last person to enter Ellis Hinkley's service station before he was shot dead. She left in a car, but arrived on foot, unstable, and possibly armed. Walt wants to send a deputy along with Henry, but he insists he works alone. Walt is adamant: not this time.
Walt returns to the station and Ruby stops him at the door to read a dry description of Ellis Hinkley: "beloved local businessman and good Samaritan who passed away before his time at the hands of an unknown assailant." Walt assumes she's writing for the Police Blotter. Ruby's face falls. She's trying to write Ellis' obituary. Walt gently points out that task usually falls to family members, but Ruby knows poor Ellis didn't have any. Walt puts his hand on Ruby's shoulder. It's a good start. Ruby promises to start over.
An elegantly dressed middle-aged couple hurries into the station and rush up to Walt. They introduce themselves as Johnson and Maureen Mace. Their daughter Evelyn disappeared two and a half years ago. They thought she was dead, but apparently Walt has evidence that she's alive. They show him a printout of the screen grab from the surveillance camera at Ellis' store.
In Walt's office, Johnson and Maureen tell Walt their story while Branch and Vic look on. Evelyn disappeared without a trace. They put out a reward and hired a private detective to no avail, until now. They're from Portland, but a friend in Jackson Hole saw Evelyn's picture on the local news and called them. They booked a jet and rushed to Durant. Walt is brutally honest: Evelyn is a person of interest in a homicide case. Does she have a history of mental illness or drug abuse? The two are shocked. No! Vic asks if she's ever been arrested. Maureen looks at the floor. Yes. For shoplifting, and Johnson admits there was also a check-forging charge. Evelyn was out on bail awaiting trial when she disappeared. Johnson and Maureen insist that their daughter might have been aimless, but she would never ever hurt anyone! Vic wonders if Evelyn had a boyfriend. Maureen and Johnson exchange a dark look. Yes. Teddy Brown, but it's impossible that Evelyn ran off with him because he still lives in Portland and they see him occasionally, usually coming out of a bar.
The next day, outside Ellis Hinckley's service station, Henry's face is a study in Cheyenne intensity as he crouches. examining stains on the service road leading to the highway. Deputy Feguson, "The Ferg," hovers over him chattering about the survival skills he picked up at Outward Bound. Rock-climbing...orienteering... Henry cuts him off. Does he realize tracking is a solitary journey? The Ferg's pod leader called it a conversation between man and nature. Henry grabs The Ferg to prevent him from stepping on the stain. Henry declares one of the stains is a toe print heading towards the front door. He points across the highway. She came from that direction. The Ferg is impressed!
At the Sheriff's station, Walt and Branch stare at the screen grab of the mysterious crazy woman. Branch suggests asking the Maces to put up a cash reward for information since no one else has come forward. Walt doesn't want to ask parents to put a bounty on their own daughter. Branch counters that they want to find her. Walt retorts that they don't want to send her to prison. Vic bursts in frazzled, but triumphant. She's been on the phone all morning with the DMV and found out the only license plate starting with 17-78 that could possibly have been at Ellis' station that day is leased to Newett Energy and Exploration LLC. Branch cocks an eyebrow, isn't that Vic's husband's company? It is. And he got them a sit-down with the supervisor. Branch congratulates Vic, with some envy. Walt asks Vic to thank her husband for him, but she'd rather not. She had to promise him that Walt wouldn't be involved before he would agree to help. Walt and Branch exchange a look.
Walt's Bronco pulls up to the Newett Energy drilling site, a cluster of metallic behemoths grinding against a bleak Wyoming sky.
Up in the control room overlooking the site, Walt asks the supervisor, Mason Vaughn, for a list of anyone who drove the vehicle with the plate numbers from the crime scene in the last three days. Vaughn is coolly polite, but not cooperating. Isn't Walt the Sheriff of Absaroka County? Well, since this is Cumberland County, Vaughn would feel better if Sheriff Wilkins was there. Releasing personal information about employees requires a subpoena. Walt takes measure of the man. Is that how he's going to play it? Walt suggests that the editor of the Durant newspaper might want the scoop that Newett Energy is stonewalling a homicide investigation. Vic clucks her tongue. Tough choice, whether a single employee's privacy is more important than the company paying Vaughn's salary. Vaughn snatches the paper with the license number as Walt winks at Vic. Vaughn grumbles he thought he left corruption and blackmail from the local police behind in Latin America where he used to work. He checks the license plate number against a list on his computer. The vehicle is a company car used by Leland Townes, who owns the property Newett Energy is drilling on.
Out in the woods amidst thick foliage, Henry is examining leaves while The Ferg reads a map. He spots something on the ground and picks it up - a small crystal. The Ferg calls to Henry to come look! Henry is annoyed, they're not collecting rocks. But The Ferg is excited because it's Herderite, a crystal that doesn't occur naturally in Wyoming. Now Henry is interested. Most Herderite comes from Brazil or Africa. Henry is impressed; young Ferg is full of surprises. The Ferg wonders why it would be there. Henry holds up the crystal and looks around. It's a breadcrumb. The Ferg grins. Cool!
Walt's Bronco pulls up at a large house on a sprawling ranch up in the tree-covered hills.
Leland Townes comes out to greet Walt and Vic. He looks like a 70s hipster in white linen pants and open shirt revealing a medallion hanging against his chest from a leather cord. Leland explains that he inherited the place five years ago from his dad, but he's a terrible rancher so he decided to lease some of the land to Newett Energy. Newett lends him the company car , a pretty nice one! Walt shows Leland a picture of Ellis Hinkley who he vaguely recognizes as the cashier at the gas station. Now Leland knows what this is about! That crazy woman! He went to get gas and he saw this young lady, probably homeless. She nearly jumped on his hood screaming that "they" were coming after her! Vic shows him the screen grab of Evelyn. Yup, that's her. She seemed unhinged and it scared Leland, he didn't want to get involve, so he drove off. Walt informs him that Ellis was shot to death. Leland is shocked. He should have called 911! When Walt asks, Leland recalls there was a black SUV that pulled in with an evergreen tree on the license plate.
Walt and Vic head down the side of the hill to the truck. Oregon plates: the SUV might belong to Evelyn's boyfriend Teddy Brown. Walt tells Vic to find out what kind of vehicle he drives. She can't believe it. The DMV again? Is she being punished or something? Walt chuckles. It's character building!
Walt returns to the Sheriff's station to find Sheriff Jim Wilkins from Cumberland County in his office. In a friendly tone he draws a line in the sand. He got a nasty call from the CEO of Newett Energy. They didn't like the 3rd degree, or the threats of going to the media. Jim hopes Walt will understand: these guys write big campaign checks! Doesn't entitle them to break the law, but it does entitle them to some respect. Jim adds that he's earned a little respect too, Newett energy is on his turf. Walt explains that he's on a homicide case and didn't have time to check in, but will from now on. The two Sheriffs shake hands.
Jim heads out of Walt's office as Branch comes in. Jim has seen Branch's campaign signs and warns Walt to watch out for this guy. Walt laughs. He already does... every day! Branch tells Walt he's researched the Bonnie and Clyde couple in South Dakota. They steal a different vehicle for every robbery. Branch has the list of all reported auto thefts, but it's huge, a needle in a haystack kind of search. With their limited resources, Branch believes they should let the Maces put up a reward. Walt warns Branch about the mass of fake leads people will try and sell them, but under the circumstances, Branch is right. Branch is stunned. Did Walt just say he's right?
Out in the woods, The Ferg and Henry are following the trail of crystals one by one to a small wooden shed. The Ferg pulls out his gun and the two men position themselves on either side of the door. On a signal The Ferg busts open the door and lunges inside pointing his gun... at a fuzzy white bunny in a cage. It's a rabbit hutch with multiple cages. But there is something in the last cage that isn't white and fuzzy. It's wrapped in a blanket, gurgling: a baby! Henry gently picks up the baby and looks into the tiny face. It's a two-month old bright-eyed boy neatly swaddled in blankets.
Back in Walt's office, Walt, The Ferg, and Walt's daughter Cady are whispering to each other huddled around the baby, asleep in a carrier on the desk. As a lawyer, Cady was able to convince Children's Services to let the Sheriff's office have custody until the social worker arrives. The hospital told Ferg the baby was a bit dehydrated, but otherwise just fine. He hands Walt a photo of Evelyn found in the swaddling . "I love you" is scrawled on the back. Is Evelyn the mother? Cady is disgusted. What kind of mother puts her baby in a rabbit hutch? The Ferg thinks she was trying to protect him. Or hide him, Walt adds. Cady has a darker view: maybe Evelyn just abandoned her baby. The Ferg disagrees because he found so many crystals along the path, left there like breadcrumbs to mark her way back. That reminds Walt of what Ruby said about the woman asking the price of milk. Maybe Evelyn went to the store to get milk for the baby and planned to return to him but something stopped her. With sudden urgency, Walt asks The Ferg to show him where to find the shed on the map. The Ferg and Cady must stay with the baby because if Evelyn was hiding this child, someone else may be looking for him too.
At the shed, a slender hooded figure with something lumpy under her jacket hurries towards the doorway. Walt lurks at the side of the shed peering in the window. Inside, the figure frantically searches from cage to cage, pulling out the hay in clumps. No baby!
As soon as the figure steps outside, Walt surprises her from behind. Is she looking for something? She gasps and tries to run, but Walt grabs her fast and pulls off the hood. A sultry dark-haired young woman glares up at him with a defiant "hi." It's not Evelyn.
Back at the Sheriff's station, Cady coos to the baby in her arms from inside the jail cell now decorated with a crib and toys, an oasis amidst a circus. The station is packed with every "concerned citizen" in Wyoming clamoring to claim the reward. At his desk, Branch thanks a white bearded cowboy for coming in, but the missing girl is not a redhead. The geezer wants to know if this means he doesn't get the $100,000. Vic takes a call at her desk. It's Walt, in his office, asking for the photo of Evelyn.
In Walt's office, Vic hands Walt the photo and fills him in that she found Evelyn's boyfriend, Teddy Brown. He claims he's been in Portland, but she hasn't confirmed his alibi. Suddenly, Vic notices the young woman in the corner just finishing a glass of water. She's beautiful but decidedly creepy in a baggy Victorian dress beneath a hooded jacket, holding a Baby Bjorn carrier. Walt introduces her as "October", a woman who went to the shed to look for the baby. October insists she was just out for a walk. Walt shows her the photo of Evelyn; does she know her? Of course she knows "April." Vic points out that's not her name, but October knows better. April doesn't go by the name Evelyn any more. And the baby is NOT April's, he belongs to her "family" . April stole him. October calmly spews the family dogma: they are a loving community of equals in harmony with the earth and each other.
Walt asks where April is. October glares at him. Even if she knew, she couldn't tell. Vic asks about the family. The girl is sure Vic won't "get it" but reveals there are 12 members. The golden number. Vic asks if the cult have a name and October bristles Why is there so much ignorance in the world? She recites more dogma about the poisons Vic and Walt consume, and the messiah they worship who has been gone for 2000 years. Maybe they are the cult! October gets up to leave, but Walt blocks her way. April's been missing for 2 years, and he won't release October until she tells him where April has been. But October knows her rights. She can't be detained just for walking in the woods with a Baby Bjorn. October heads for the door and Vic grabs her arm. With bewitching insolence, the girl accuses Vic of assault. Should she press charges? Walt tells Vic to let her go.
Walt and Vic watch October weave through the crowd to leave the office. Vic plans to follow her, maybe she'll lead them somewhere. Walt directs The Ferg to get the water glass October drank from and pull her prints.
In a trance-like meditative state, Henry stands at the fence outside the Newett Energy drill site. There is a large NO TRESPASSING sign. There is also a large hole in the fence. Henry ducks down to go through it. Minutes later, a large black SUV pulls up to Henry, now on the other side of the fence. Two hulking security guards in dark shades and black nylon jackets emerge and close in on Henry. One of them leers, "Are you lost, Kemosabe?" Henry dryly corrects him - Henry would be Tonto, and the guard would be Kemosabe. The goons are not amused. Henry is trespassing. They command him to raise his hands. As he begins to comply, one of the guards swipes at him with a switchblade. Henry ducks and slams the guard in the stomach doubling him over. Henry is about to move in for a kick but stops short when he hears the click of a gun pointed directly at his head. Henry slowly raises his hands again and says, "How!"
The station is still buzzing; Walt catches Vic staring out the window. She's supposed to be following October! Vic points out the window: she is. October has been sitting on a bench across the street from the station since she left in some kind of "creepy little vigil." Walt orders Vic to not let the girl out of her sight. Ruby calls to Walt and, clearly annoyed, introduces him to a tall man with a droopy moustache claiming to have valuable information about Evelyn that he will only reveal directly to Walt.
In Walt's office, Holt is cocky recounting that his wife Katharine is a nurse and a midwife. She delivered a baby for the girl in the photo. Walt asks how long ago and the man has the right answer: about two months ago. Walt is starting to believe him: where is his wife? The man's eyes are cold: where is his check? Walt points out that he's got a man dead and this could be the key to finding the killer. Mr. Holt knows that, but he wants his check.
Under a blazing sun, chickens peck at feed in a large cage. A shadow passes over them to something else in the cage: human feet bound by rope. Evelyn, bruised and filthy, lies in the chicken coop, tied at the ankles and wrists. She clutches the wire mesh begging to be let out. Silence. Evelyn screams that she wants her baby!
Walt and Branch are at the Absaroka hospital looking for Katharine Holt. While the front desk nurse goes to find her, Branch's cell phone rings; as usual it's for Walt. Branch snidely points out that it would be a lot easier if Walt would get a cell phone of his own. Walt smirks taking the phone. He doesn't need one. It's The Ferg calling from Walt's office where he is watching October through the window, still sitting on a bench across from the station. He got a hit on October's fingerprints. Her legal name is Fiona Hines, she's 27, and she went missing five years ago in Madison, Wisconsin. She hasn't moved from that bench for hours. The Ferg admits it's starting to freak him out.
At the hospital, Walt assures The Ferg he'll be alright, and hangs up as sees a worried-looking nurse in blue scrubs approaching: Katharine Holt. Walt shows Katharine the picture of Evelyn. Did she deliver this young lady's baby about two months ago? Katharine pales with fear.
Minutes later, in a corner of the hospital lobby, Katharine apologizes for not speaking up but those people are scary. Walt asks which people? Katharine looks around nervously, and answers in a low voice: those girls from the farmers market who sell organic food. A couple of months ago one of them came banging on her door at 3:00 a.m. to ask for help delivering her sister's baby. They offered her two thousand dollars. She needed the money, but had no idea what she was getting into. As Katharine describes what happened, flash back to:
Out on the street at night, two pretty women in long dresses blindfold Katharine and push her into a car. Katharine's voice continues, they drove for 40 minutes. No one spoke the entire time. Her blindfold is secured by rope. Katharine's mouth is clenched with fear.
At the hospital, Branch asks if she could see or hear anything at all? Katharine tried to count the turns, but she got confused. She thinks they might have crossed railway tracks just before they got there. Walt gently prods. Got where? She continues in flashback to:
Another pretty woman unties Katharine's blindfold, and others surround her in a room she describes as weird; with a mural depicting a woman with flowing hair, swathed in a white cloth, floating on symmetrical sunbeams against a blue sky. Evelyn lies on a bed beneath the mural drenched in sweat, screaming in agony. The baby was breach, but Katharine was able to turn it around. Bent over the bed, Katharine works between Evelyn's legs, finally nodding and telling her to push. After another hour of pushing, the baby was delivered.
In the present at the hospital, Walt wonders if any of the women spoke to Katharine at all. Her face crumples in tears. On the way home, one of them whispered to her that if she ever told anyone about this, they will come to her bed one night and stick a knife into her belly. Katharine presses her hand to her mouth and cries.
Outside the hospital heading for their cars, Walt asks Branch if he's heard any rumors about cults in the area. Branch only knows of some survivalists out in the woods, dudes with beards and guns and tins of food. This one sounds like Waco or that Heaven's Gate thing. Walt agrees, but who is leading it? And where are they? Branch is just about to get into his car when his cell phone rings. It's for Walt. Again. Branch glares at Walt as he hands over the phone. Ruby wants to patch through a call.
It's Jim Wilkins, the Cumberland County Sheriff . He's out at the Newett Energy site flanked by Mason Vaughn and the two guards who attacked Henry. The camaraderie is gone now, and Jim is pissed. He guesses Walt figured if he wasn't snooping himself it would be ok to send his Indian.
Jim claims Henry was trespassing on Newett Energy property. Walt asks to speak with him, and Jim hands the phone to Henry waiting in handcuffs. He tells Walt what happened in code: he followed the yellow brick road. It ended here, near the grill of a black SUV. Walt asks if Henry happened to see the license plate. Nope. He was a little distracted. Sheriff Wilkins turns to look at Henry suspiciously.
Walt tells his friend to sit tight and slides into his car to go get him. He also needs to get a judge.
Outside the Sheriff's office October stares insolently up at Vic, sitting by the office window glaring back. She mutters that it's like the world's longest staring contest.
Nearby, Cady urges The Ferg to approve handing the baby over to Monica, a social worker she's known for years. He shuts off the flashlight he was using to scrutinize Monica's ID. With a last fond look, Cady hands over the baby in his carrier to Monica, and offers to walk her to her car. Branch follows them out.
On the street outside the Sheriff's office, Branch calls to Cady. She leaves Monica's side to hiss at Branch that he's got to stop calling her! Branch is upset. Maybe if she answered the phone...
Up in the office, Vic suddenly notices the bench is empty. She jumps up and runs outside, but it's too late. October rushes up to Monica and grabs the baby carrier. There is a brief tug of war over the handle until October pulls out a knife and stabs Monica. Cady snatches the carrier and shields it against a wall as October lunges at her with the knife. Branch grabs October's arm just in time and clocks her in the jaw. As she drops to her knees, he hurries over to Cady. Is she all right?
Vic flies out of the office in time to see October get up and race across the street. With a shout Vic takes off after her. A car comes squealing around the corner and October jumps in yelling "go!" The car plows into Vic flipping her over the hood and speeds off. Branch runs over to Vic and helps her to her feet as she grunts with pain.
At the Red Pony, in spite of the top shelf whiskey Henry is pouring, Judge Gil Mayhew scoffs at Walt's request for a warrant to search Newett Energy property based on a hunch and the vague recollections of a blindfolded woman. Henry points out that he tracked the girl back from the scene of the crime to that property. The crusty old judge rolls his eyes - uh-huh - the Eagle Scout found some crystals. Henry refills the judge's glass. Tthose crystals are Herderite, which is non-native. Walt chimes in, Henry is a skilled tracker! The judge stands up whiskey in hand; Henry is also a trespasser. Without some real evidence, the judge won't sign the warrant.
At the Sheriff's station, Vic is at the computer holding an ice pack to her head, banging out the license plate number on October's getaway car with bruised fingers. A registration form comes up on the screen with a driver's license showing a familiar face. Vic's eyes widen. It's October!
At the Red Pony, Henry hands the phone to Walt. Vic quickly fills him in: October stabbed the social worker, and Vic was hit by a car. Most importantly, the car is registered to October, under her real name Fiona Hines, and guess where the address is?
Outside Leland Towne's ranch house that night, Walt and Jim Wilkins have joined forces. Branch, Vic and The Ferg scope out the house in the light of multiple police cars while Jim tells Walt he had no idea what was going on here. He thought Leland and those girls were just crunchy hippies. Walt raises an eyebrow. It didn't strike him as odd that this man was living with twelve young women out in the middle of nowhere? Jim didn't think it was any of his business. Walt looks him in the eye pointing out that Leland and the energy company were funding Jim's campaign. Jim insists he's not in anyone's pocket. Walt wonders if he can trust Jim to back him up when they go through that door. Sheriff to Sheriff, Jim assures him that he can.
Minutes later, Walt and Jim cautiously lead the team up on the porch and into the house.
Inside, in the beam of their flashlights, the house is empty. Branch declares that the cult hit the road, but Vic discovers their cars are still there.
Walt spots another building and they all head around to the side of the house towards a room with flickering candlelight.
Walt kicks open the door and they enter guns drawn. It's bare except for a row of neat cots and a raised platform where Leland Towne sits cross-legged surrounded by candles. There is a cup of tea and a gun by his side. In the eerie light he stares into space as if in a trance. Walt points his gun at Leland and tells him to put up his hands. Leland doesn't move. Jim commands him to do what Walt says; instead Leland stretches his hand out over the weapon declaring that's the gun, they can check the ballistics. Four guns are pointed at Leland. This time it's Branch who orders him to put up his hands! Leland slowly intones that an object in motion stays in motion, that' s the law of the universe. He didn't want to shoot that old man at the gas station, but he was going to take April away from them. And it was ordained. Nothing can interfere with The Plan.
Suddenly, Leland relaxes and in a gesture more prayer than surrender, raises his hands towards the mural of the woman floating in rays of the sun. With a half smile, Leland declares he doesn't need the gun, he's already escaped. Branch claps handcuffs on Leland's wrists, and with The Ferg, lifts him off the dais to walk him close to Walt. Face to face, Walt knows something isn't right. He looks into Leland's eyes and growls, where's Evelyn? In a lilting voice Leland replies, does he mean April? She's with January and February and March... Leland sing-songs all 12 months of the year while Walt tries to read his face.
Leading Leland out of the house into the night, Walt asks where are the girls? What's this plan he's talking about? Leland stumbles and in a slurred imitation of Louis Armstrong growls "If you have to ask, you'll never know." Leland's legs begin to drag as he mumbles that we're all just individual points converging on the infinite. Finally his legs buckle and he falls to the ground unconscious. Walt realizes he poisoned himself. There must have been something in his tea! The Ferg is frantic. What should they do? Call an ambulance? Walt tells him there's no time, and jams his fingers into Leland's mouth forcing him to vomit up white liquid. He pours a bottle of water Ferg gives him down Leland's throat until he chokes and begins to revive. Walt welcomes him back.
Minutes later, Walt drives the Bronco with Leland handcuffed in the backseat praying. Walt's not going to let him die, so Leland might as well tell him where Evelyn and the girls are. Leland meets his eyes in the mirror and smiles. He's found that people who fight the hardest against death are most tempted by its salvation. They are lost, like April was when she came to him. Leland helped her realize that we're all individual points -- Walt completes the sentence -- converging on the infinite. Right.
The Bronco stops at a train crossing where the gates come down with a clanging bell and flashing red lights to warn of an arriving train. Inside the truck, Leland's voice is hypnotic, telling Walt we're only meant to be here a short time, then we make way for new people. Evelyn was trying to avoid her destiny by running away and he couldn't let that happen. It was time to move on to the next stage. Walt assumes the next stage is death. Leland giggles. No, silly little man, the next stage is rebirth. Death is just a door. Walt wonders, why try to kill himself now? Leland speaks with unnerving certainty: it was ordained. When his baby with April was born it was clear they had all served their purpose. The flashing red lights, clanging bell, and Leland's voice blend together. Walt has served his purpose as well. Walt is not happy. Their eyes meet in the mirror. Why not let go? Kill the pain? Become immortal! Leland coaxes Walt to walk through that door together with him. Walt looks dazed. He mouths the words: points converging on the infinite. The red lights flash in his eyes...
...as Walt sees himself standing before the mural at the house. The woman floating at the point where the rays of the sun converge...The sun is flashing, with the train lights...
Bathed in red light, Leland rocks his hands praying fervently. Walt slams the car in reverse and floors it.
The Bronco's tires screech as the truck spins around and takes off in the other direction.
Leland ramps up to hysterical prayer jabbering and shaking his hands in the air. Walt grabs the police radio and shouts that there's a train heading West near Postal Road. Do whatever it takes to stop it!
Siren wailing, the Bronco races down the road and bumps over a hill in a cloud of dust.
The siren also wails on Branch's car speeding by the train tracks.
The train hurtles down the tracks horn blaring.
Branch floors it, running parallel to the train trying to get its attention- it looks like he'll have to drive in front of it to stop it.
Rocketing along another section of the tracks, Walt spots something lying between the rails and screeches to a halt.
It's the girls - eleven of them -draped in white night gowns and sheets with empty teacups fallen from their hands. They lie in a heap directly in the path of the oncoming train.
Walt starts lifting them one by one. He grabs the face of a girl and she opens her eyes. They're still alive!
The train barrels towards them mercilessly.
The Ferg's car pulls up and he jumps out and runs over to help. Grabbing legs and arms, they lift more girls off the tracks. There's a scream: one of the girls is awake! It's Evelyn, but unlike the others, she is tied to the tracks with barbed wire. Walt frantically unwinds the wire, lacerating his hands. Evelyn yells over the wailing train, is her baby alright? Walt assures her the baby is fine, but he's got to get her out of there!
Inside the speeding train, the conductor finally notices Branch's police car. Branch signals him with the siren, and he grabs the brake switch. The train slows, but doesn't stop.
The Ferg and Vic drag more girls off the tracks as the train hurtles closer. Evelyn's hands are untied, but Walt is still pulling the barbed wire from her bloody ankles. She sees the train lights flaring as it barrels towards them and screams.
Branch's car roars up to the scene. He leaps out to help drag another girl off the tracks shouting to Walt that the conductor has hit the brake, but that thing is going to take another mile to stop!
The train is a giant machine with a deafening blast.
Evelyn screams in pain as Walt tears the barbed wire from around one ankle, leaving the other attached. The train lights blind them and the horn blares. Walt wraps his arms around Evelyn and rolls off the tracks her one foot still tied. He holds her tight and shouts over the train horn that he has her and she shouldn't move!
The train is slowing, but still on the move. Evelyn's foot is just to the side of the rail dangling from the barbed wire. The train rides right over it severing the wire and freeing her foot. The train keeps rolling, but Evelyn and Walt are safe. She collapses in his arms sobbing.
The train screeches to a stop down the tracks. Its powerful beam illuminates the girls strewn across the ground in a bizarre tableau.
Later, under the nearly full moon, Walt slumps against his car while the ambulance and police crew clean up the scene. Cady arrives with the baby. Sitting on the steps of the ambulance, Evelyn stretches out her bandaged arms to hold her boy at last.
Ruby's voice begins to describe Ellis Hinkley: a valued member of the community, whose kindness, decency, and courage will be remembered by everyone who knew him.
Back in his office, Walt listens to Ruby read the final words of Ellis' obituary. "He will be missed." She looks up at Walt. That sounds about right. Ruby nods and Walt closes the file on this case. (c) aetv.com