Far from the crime scene, Eddie's crew listens to the police scanner as casualty reports from CTU come in. Jack listens silently, barely able to contain his rage. Meanwhile, at CTU, Tony emerges from the rubble to assist injured co-workers. He finds Paula trapped under a twisted girder. Kim carries Megan out of the CTU complex and they are unharmed. Suddenly, Megan's eyes roll back and she begins to seize. Kim calls for help, and a Paramedic takes Megan to an ambulance.
At the O.C., Palmer is visibly upset over the bombing at CTU and laments that they did not receive word from Jack Bauer sooner. Rayburn says that they did everything they could. After the President leaves, Lynne blames Rayburn for the casualties. He informs her that since she was the only one to have spoken to Jack, she will be the one to take the blame if the truth comes out. Lynne knows she is being blackmailed.
In Panorama City, Mason asks an EMT what his deterioration will be like. Although he should be normal for another twelve hours, he will later experience more severe symptoms. His mental functions will eventually deteriorate and he will lapse into a coma. Mason receives a call from Tony who gives him news about the bombing and casualties. Paula, who had encrypted all intelligence about the nuclear threat, is injured and unavailable to help decrypt it. Mason tells Tony to do whatever it takes to get that data. He also says that he may not be coming back to the office. Tony is furious that Mason is still trying to distance himself from the nuclear blast range.
Eddie pulls the van up to a remote road, and the crew sets fire to the vehicle. Eddie takes a call from Joe Wald and scribbles an address of where to meet him on a matchbook. At a waiting car, Jack pulls his gun on Eddie and demands the address. Jack places him under arrest. The other guys in the crew see this and fire at Jack, but Jack kills them. Eddie begins to drive, and Jack shoots at him through the windshield. He pulls the lifeless body of Eddie out of the driver's seat, and gets in the car.
As he drives away, Jack calls CTU. Michelle informs him of the casualties, but he doesn't understand why there wasn't enough time to evacuate everyone. He gives her the address of Joseph Wald in Simi Valley and she sends backup. When Jack asks about Kimberly, Michelle says she will look into her whereabouts. Michelle tells Tony about Jack's call. He had forgotten that Kim was on her way to CTU, and he has Michelle check the security log to see of Kim was in the building before the blast.
At the hospital, Kim consults with an ER doctor about Megan's condition. The little girl's seizure was caused by a skull fracture that occurred before the CTU explosion, and she suffered from other prior injuries that were never treated. This indicates a pattern of physical abuse. Although Kim claims to have never hurt Megan, the doctor wants to leave it up to the police to determine what really happened.
Palmer and his team of military and civilian advisors watch a news report about the CTU bombing. Rayburn once again brings up his plan about a citywide evacuation. This time, Lynne argues with him about the idea. Any evacuation of Los Angeles would take at least a week and it would be difficult to target specific areas under immediacy. Palmer, sensing that there are some unknown undertones in this fight, states that he has reservations about evacuating people. Rayburn insists that he is only trying to protect the President politically. "If the bomb goes off, we have more important concerns than my re-election," Palmer says. The President orders that no evacuation takes place.
At the Warner house, Kate admits to her father that she had found inconsistencies in their company's budget and had hired a private investigator to find out whether Reza had been stealing money. Although he was clean financially, Kate then learned that Reza may be involved with a terrorist. However, she doesn't know what proof the investigator uncovered. Bob doesn't believe her, and tells her that it is a mistake. He had Reza checked out thoroughly himself, and knows that he is not a terrorist. Bob asks his daughter to start treating Reza as a member of the family. Reza approaches them, and Kate says that she has to pick up lunch. Reza offers to drive her, but she refuses. Bob insists that she allow her future brother-in-law to drive her.
As Mason rides in an ambulance toward a hospital, he gets a call from Tony on the emergency scanner. Since Paula had worked on the encryption at Mason's computer, they need his password to access the hard drive. Mason soberly inquires about Paula's condition, and Tony tells him that she is non-responsive.
Jack calls the O.C. and is connected to Lynne. He asks why the CTU office wasn't emptied when he called thirty minutes before it was bombed. Lynne has no explanation, and Jack blames her for the lives of his co-workers. She encourages him to continue with his job because he is their best chance of intercepting the nuclear weapon.
Jack pulls up to the address from Eddie's matchbook. He knocks on the door, demanding that Joe let him in. Jack feigns alarm, and tells Joe that Eddie and the crew are all dead. Joe opens the door to let Jack in, and Jack takes him at gunpoint. Joe questions why Jack would kill Marshall Goren if he is really a federal agent, and Jack says that he did what he had to do to get to Joe. Joe is surprised when Jack informs him that the CTU explosion was merely a diversion for a nuclear bomb, but he does not answer when Jack asks who gave the order to hit CTU. Suddenly, a pit bull leaps at Jack and he wrestles it to the ground. Joe escapes out the back door into a nearby shed. Jack shoots the dog to escape and follows him. Joe has locked himself into a secured room guarded by steel doors,and from inside, he watches on security monitors as Jack pounds the walls with a pitchfork. Seeing the cameras, Jack knows he is being watched.
Kim phones Carla Matheson from the emergency room and tells her what happened to Megan. Carla at first accuses Kim of kidnapping her daughter and attacking her husband, but Kim blames Gary for what has happened. Although Carla warns her to stay out of their problems, Kim tells her that the doctors found evidence of physical abuse. She invites Carla to the hospital to be with Megan. As Carla rushes out the door to go to her daughter, Gary stops her.
With no luck breaking into the secure room, Jack tries to appeal to Joe directly. He tells him that whoever hired him wants to destroy the entire country, starting with Los Angeles. Although Joe has fought against the government in the past, this time his actions will kill over a million innocent people. He has always believed that it was wrong to have too much power, but the irony is that he is now the one who holds the power. Jack asks Joe what he will do with that power.
As Reza drives with Kate, he tells her that he is aware that she doesn't like him. He says that she just needs to get to know him. Kate suddenly becomes alarmed when Reza takes a different course toward the restaurant. He says that he wants to show her something to help her understand him better. They pull onto a service road of a residential street, and Kate becomes afraid. She yells at him to stop the car and she gets out. Reza points to a house, showing Kate the new home he bought for Marie as a wedding present. Kate feels foolish for jumping to conclusions.
The rescue workers remove the girder off Paula, but her body is in shock. With internal bleeding, she needs to be taken to the hospital for surgery. Tony follows her gurney toward an ambulance, and they are met outside by Mason. Mason asks the field doctors to not only make Paula remain on site but to also keep her lucid. Tony argues with Mason because Paula will die if she does not get to the hospital. Yet she is the only one who can decrypt the intel on the nuke. Against Tony's judgement, Mason orders for her to be woken up.
Palmer tells Lynne that he knows that there was a thirty-minute lapse between when Jack called and when they notified CTU. His suspicions are confirmed about her trying to alert him during the press conference, but he questions why she never told him the truth after the fact. Lynne apologizes, but does not reveal any other information. Palmer suspects, after seeing the argument between Lynne and Rayburn, that it was Rayburn who wanted to keep it from him. Lynne offers her resignation instead of answering him. Palmer does not accept it, but assures Lynne that he still trusts her to tell him everything that happened.
Tony tells Michelle that he agrees with Mason's call to revive Paula, even if it means risking her life. Yet Tony feels guilty for hiring Paula because she was never given the chance to do her job. Michelle comforts Tony.
Secret Service agents escort Rayburn to the President's office in the O.C. Palmer fires him for lying, but Rayburn claims that he made a decision that the President could not make. "I'm the only one who could make it," Palmer says bluntly. Rayburn insists that he was only doing what was necessary to allow Jack Bauer to get to Joseph Wald. When Palmer orders the Secret Service to bring Rayburn to Richard Armus, a flicker of fear crosses Rayburn's face.
In the shed, Jack makes one last appeal to Joe. With the SWAT team soon to arrive, Joe will either end up dead or in jail. Jack gives him the chance of still doing the right thing by telling him who ordered the hit on CTU. The steel door of the secure room opens, and Jack goes in with his gun drawn. Joe hands Jack a manila envelope with photos of his female contact. He says that he only met the woman twice. Joe then shoots himself in the mouth. Jack is stunned to see that the woman in the photos is Nina Myers.