The episode begins with Khlyen telling a story to a young Dutch about a man and his daughter who lived in a castle. In reality, he describes the story of him and his daughter Aneela who lived in a large laboratory structure on Arkyn. There, he discovered the green plasma and used it to develop the planet’s crops. However, when citizens ate the fruit from the tree, they suffered from the transition of the plasma. Even worse, Khlyen discovers something deeper in his study of the plasma. He advises Dutch to remember this story as the past story ends with Aneela running in the snowy fields of Arkyn as green plasma drips from her eyes.
In present day, Dutch and D’avin wake up John, who immediately orders them to go back for Pawter. D’avin is forced to admit to John that there was no saving Pawter after her stabbing, otherwise they would be in Old Town now. In the meantime, Fancy interrupts the group to inform them that they are approaching Khlyen. Dutch tries to comfort John as he watches Delle Seyah give a eulogy for Pawter to the Quad. John admits that he thought his relationship with Pawter was a time where he could be happy like a normal person, but Dutch reminds him that she will be with him whether they continue the mission or just leave. She then offers to leave the Quad with him, but John reminds her that they haven’t won yet. Lucy then interrupts the two to report D’avin fighting Fancy.
D'avin nearly forces Fancy’s head to explode when the two face off invading members of the Black Root. They demand to know where Khlyen is, knowing that they were after him as well. Suddenly, Khlyen himself boards the ship and shoots the Black Root members point blank. At first, they are unaffected as they are Level 6, but, slowly, the plasma in their systems leak out and turn a murky black color. Khlyen reveals that he developed a toxin to counteract the green plasma with the knowledge of D’avin’s immunity. With the new toxin, he suggests that they could, in fact, save the Quad in a suicide mission together.
Khlyen: Indeed. And what if I told you we could use this to save The Quad? All of us. Together. One glorious suicide mission. Who's in?
John orders Lucy to analyze the toxin from the Black Root members while Dutch demands answers from Khlyen. He admits that Aneela is his daughter, though he did not intend for Dutch to receive the red box until later. Since Aneela was still young when she came in contact with the plasma, she could not handle the transition, and the process eventually drove her insane. Why Dutch looks like her, however, he doesn’t know. Still, what he does know is critical.
Khlyen also reveals to the group that the green plasma also contains a parasite known as the Hullan. Once inside a host, it compromises the subject. In other words, none of the Level 6 subjects are completely human anymore. In his lengthy life, he confirms that his people compromised with the ancestors of the Nine. If they could provide them with the green plasma available in the Quad by drying up their planets, like what happened to Old Town, they would be spared in the upcoming invasion. Fortunately, with the toxin, they can effectively kill the armies at the source. Unfortunately, the Black Root appears to have surrounded Arkyn. In spite of this, Khlyen reveal there is another source of the green plasma, and that is one of the original plants that grow from it. He explains that this was the purpose of the Scarbacks’ mission 200 years ago as well as why Aneela tried to kill them. If they find the tree that was taken from Arkyn, they can stop the source.
Dutch travels to Leith to learn more about the tree from Alvis. Although Alvis is surprised to learn of the existence of such a tree, he takes her to an old record of the Scarback mission. The records reveal that though the Scarbacks took something from “the devil” Aneela, the devil may have taken it back. However, they have no direct answer as to where she could have taken it since the rest of the record contains only art and poetry. Then, Dutch notices a pattern in an art work and discovers its true design is a star map of the location.
John scans the star map through Lucy, but the location seems to yield nowhere. Despite the map, Khlyen reveals that the location is actually a spot known as Archive, a ship that serves as a vault for the extremely wealthy. Although Khlyen begins to form a plan for Archive, Dutch shoots down his authority, reminding him that the mission is meant for a Killjoy.
Back at Old Town, Delle Seyah surveys the area after Pawter’s death when she is suddenly contacted by Khlyen. With the plan at Old Town falling through, Khlyen acknowledges how she had to move to the backup plan. He warns her of the upcoming invasion and believes that the Killjoys have indeed become a threat. With that, Khlyen charges Delle Seyah to eliminate the group in order to achieve what she wants.
On Archive, Dutch goes undercover using her previous royal status as Yalena. Although her family has been through rough times, the official at Archive allows her in, providing that her guards (Fancy and D’avin) stay behind and wait. Dutch accepts this agreement, leaving she and Khlyen to meet with the man as the men wait for her to access Aneela’s vault. In an office, Dutch allows her prints to be scanned for security.
However, the guard on the scene quickly turn on Fancy and D’avin, forcing the two to fight their way around them. In this distraction, D’avin manages to fire off John’s tech to allow Lucy to develop a floor plan of the ship. With this knowledge, he guides D’avin and Fancy to the service tunnels where they can interfere with the ship’s technology. After this, John is able to override the computers to allow Dutch to access Aneela’s vault.
Unfortunately, the ship official grows wise to Dutch’s trick, stating that no one would allow their guards to stay behind on Archive. With security arriving on the scene, Dutch is forced to fight them off with the help of Khlyen. Since the manager has a bomb rigged in his systems to explode if they attack him, Dutch and Khlyen leave him as they escape for the vault.
Fancy Lee: Accept it Jaqobis, I am physiologically superior now.
D'avin: You're a Six, not a ten. Simmer down.
Down in the tunnels, D’avin and Fancy become swamped with security guards while John also faces enemy ships. In order to fight back, John is forced to move out of Archive to evade the ships, leaving the rest of the team effectively stranded.
Fortunately, Dutch and Khlyen reach the vault where they discover the Scarback tree. With the supply of plasma, it has grown to an immense size. Before Dutch can do anything, she triggers the security feature, revealing the true location of the vault. Instead of being on Archive, this vault was sent in an orbit around a nearby sun, gradually incinerating anything near the tree. John deduces that the vault contained a kind of portal to transport the two, but he has no way of helping them. Meanwhile, D’avin and Fancy fight back against the guards with D’avin using Fancy as a human shield.
Khlyen attempts to disrupt the system of the vault to save their lives. Handing Dutch his supply of toxin, he effectively destroys the console, healing from his status as a Level 6. The destruction forces the windows to close, giving them some protection from the sun, giving Dutch an opening to poison the tree. However, the toxin doesn’t appear to affect the plasma surrounding the tree. Meanwhile, John effectively avoids the attacking ships, leading them to be destroyed by Archive, and D’avin and Fancy overtake the manager’s office.
John later ascertains through Lucy’s scanning that the plasma around the tree requires the additional catalyst of the black plasma acquired from a Level 6. In other words, they need to sacrifice a Level 6 to destroy the tree. Moving quickly, Khlyen takes the toxin to stab himself with the cure. Dutch argues against his sacrifice, but Khlyen remains dedicated to his cause, revealing that Aneela is already after Dutch and her team. He ultimately states that, though the earlier subjects of the plasma maintained their senses, Aneela and the others created the Red 17 experiments to create slaves and armies. He originally helped them until he came across Dutch who resembled his daughter. With this in mind, he sought to train her for the transition so she wouldn’t be lost like his daughter. When D’avin arrived with his immunity, he discovered a new way to fight against the Black Root. However, he warns that there are other sources for the plasma beyond the tree. He cuts himself, setting free the black plasma, and bleeds into the tree. Dutch hold him as he slowly dies. The plasma finally corrupts, affecting the supplies on Arkyn as well as Fancy. D’avin also arrives to rescue Dutch.
Back on Lucy, Dutch once again dreams about Aneela before John comes to see her. Though he knows that Dutch despised Khlyen for what he did, he tells her that she does not have to forgive him in order to feel his loss. Now openly honest, Dutch cries with John despite remembering his own pain. John assures her that he prefers being the shoulder she cries on for comfort.
The three then travel to Old Town where they toast to their victory at the Royale. Though John remembers Pawter’s death, he insists that he’s fine enough to stay at the bar. He then moves to speak to Pree and asks whether or not the bartender should stay in Old Town. Pree remarks that sometimes people need to leave to fight and sometimes, they need to leave. He can never be sure until it happens. The two then toast to Pawter before John goes out for some air.
Khlyen: When the nights were long, and the days were deep...
Outside, however, he confronts Delle Seyah, who believed to be in contact with Khlyen. John reveals that he tricked Delle Seyah into meeting with him alone. Cornered, John takes his revenge for Pawter’s death by shooting Delle Seyah and leaving her to die in an alley.
With that act, John decides to leave Lucy and plans to venture outside the Quad. Although Lucy does not want John to leave, she obliges him by contacting Clara as a partner. Together, they apprehend Khlyen’s old ship and begin their journey away from the authorities.
Meanwhile, at the Royale, Fancy meets with D’avin and Dutch, revealing that he has been cured of the Level 6 treatment. Though D’avin believes that means Aneela could be cured as well, Fancy reminds him that this only includes the Level 6 subjects created by Arkyn experiments. Aneela would likely be creating plasma from other sources. With this in mind, Dutch vows to take the battle to her in an effort to win the war.
Level 6 Notes
- Clara from "Dutch and the Real Girl" returns in this episode.
- Delle Seyah was shot, but her expression suggests she seems pleased by something.
- Killjoys was officially renewed for a third season, so it looks like we will see the war!
Photo Credit: Syfy