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This article's subject relates to Season 3 of 24.This is a production article written from an out-of-universe perspective

Michelle Dessler talks one last time with a dying Gael Ortega. More guests at the hotel start to show symptoms. Jack Bauer discovers that the perpetrator has worked with him before, and was presumed dead. President David Palmer gets his first and second assignments from the man. Jack and Chase Edmunds encounter trouble when following up on a reliable lead. Tony goes through a tough time dealing with the fact that his wife may die due to being exposed.

Episode guide[]

Previously on 24[]

  • Michelle Dessler interrogates Marcus Alvers and he tells her that there are 11 vials of the virus. She then calls Tony and says that a vial of the virus was released inside the hotel and that they have to quarantine the hotel.
  • Michael Amador tells Jack Bauer that his employer knows who he is. Shortly after, Jack talks to this employer of his.
  • Stephen Saunders forces Jack to put him through to President David Palmer, Saunders said that if Palmer does not capitulate with his demands, he will release the virus.
The following takes place
between 5:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m.


Michelle has issues with the guests at the Chandler Plaza Hotel

Michelle Dessler tries to control the guests in the hotel. One points out that guards are surrounding the building. When the guests start to panic, Michelle fires three shots in the air. She lets everyone know that no one can leave, and she needs everyone's cooperation. She gets on the intercom and tells everyone the situation, that an infectious substance was released in the hotel, and they are in quarantine. She asks everyone to stay in their rooms. Craig Phillips, the head of security, gets everyone to go back upstairs. The wife of Danny, the guest Michelle had to kill, walks over to see his body. She starts yelling at Michelle for killing him. Phillips and a few other agents restrain her and take her away. Michelle looks on, consumed with guilt.


Jack Bauer gets a call from President David Palmer. Palmer asks why the bio-terrorist used Jack to get to him. Jack says that the anonymous person claims to know him. Jack tells Palmer that he probably is still in Los Angeles. Palmer reveals that he is going to use the threat of the virus to control him. Jack says that they are doing everything they can to get the man's identity and stop him, and they end the call. Jack tells Chase Edmunds that now that Michael Amador is dead, they have two leads: the perpetrator knows Jack, and Marcus Alvers has seen him. Jack tells Chase to call Tony and get Alvers to give them a physical description so they can cross check it.

David tells Wayne Palmer that Jack doesn't know who the person is. Wayne asks if he knows Jack, and how. David says that they're doing everything they can. He tells Wayne that he has enough of the Cordilla Virus to wipe out a substantial population of the country. He says that they don't have a choice but to comply.


Michelle tells Phillips to double check the exits. Phillips says that he isn't going to panic. But, he asks if everyone in the hotel is going to die. Michelle says that a few will be immune to the virus, but most of the people. Phillips asks the chances of survival. Michelle doesn't know. She gets a call from Tony Almeida. He lets her know that the perimeter is set. Michelle tells him that a panic is still possible.

Tony says that they'll be ready. He asks her how she is doing. Michelle says that she is fine. She tells him about the man she had to shoot as he is wheeled out. Tony says that she did what she had to do, and tells her to stay focused. He also tells her that she needs to find out if Alvers ever saw the man. Michelle goes to do it. An infected woman notices the arrival of HAZMAT technicians in front of the hotel. They are all wearing bio-suits.


Jack recognizes the man as Stephen Saunders

Dr. Nicole Duncan leads the technicians into the hotel. In the basement of the hotel, Marcus Alvers starts to show symptoms of the virus. He tells Michelle, but Michelle says that he isn't too bad, and they need more info from him. She asks the name of the man he works for. Alvers says that he doesn't know. Michelle looks skeptical, but Alvers says that he has nothing to gain by lying. Michelle asks when he last saw him. Alvers says three hours ago. Michelle pulls out her phone and tells Tony. Alvers gives him a description.

Tony gets everything. Chloe O'Brian says that the search won't take long. Michelle shows him a laptop with photos of men Jack has worked with. Alvers goes through all of them without seeing him. Jack says to change the living description to presumed dead. Alvers goes through five men, then sees him. Jack says that the man is Stephen Saunders. He recognizes him from the Kosovo mission that targeted Victor Drazen. He thought he died in the explosion. Jack says that he needs to think. Tony tells him to hurry. He hangs up. Jack drives along, stunned at Saunders' photo.

05:11:14... 05:11:15... 05:11:16...



Wayne lets President Palmer know that the situation at the hotel is secure. David asks if the press has picked up on the situation. Wayne says no, but they will. David says that keeping the story secure is just as important as containing the virus. He tells Wayne to draw up cover stories, not using the term Cordilla Virus. Wayne agrees. David greets Joseph O'Laughlin and shows him and Wayne into his office. David asks for Homeland Security's assessment. Joseph says that the threat level should be raised to red. David agrees.

Joseph says that airports should be closed. Wayne objects, saying that stopping air traffic might create panic. Joseph thinks it's better to prevent the vials from getting out. Wayne says that he won't be able to explain the situation, and interjects Joseph again by saying that the public's response is a security issue. Joseph then goes on to suggest shutting down interstate rail & bus traffic. Wayne interrupts, saying that the vials could already be on their way. He and Joseph start to argue, but President Palmer interrupts. He says to alert the airlines, but to wait for his call. David's phone rings. He excuses Joseph, and he leaves. David says that Saunders is on the phone.


Wayne goes to try and start a trace of the call. David picks up. Saunders wants to give him his first assignment, saying it is a start to their relationship. David says they don't have a relationship. Saunders says to do what he is told. He has put a package in the mailbox across the street from District. He wants Secret Service to open it in ten minutes. David tries to keep him on the phone, but Saunders ends the call. The trace failed. Wayne knows he probably knew what they were trying to do. David orders Secret Service to pick up the package immediately.


Nicole Duncan conducts tests for the virus

Jack and Chase are still driving along. Jack says that no evidence points to his survival. Chase thinks he was living under the radar, but Jack says that if he was caught, he would've been captured. Chase thinks that Saunders may have betrayed the team. Jack disagrees, calling him a patriot. He calls MI-6, and asks to speak to Trevor Tomlinson. Trevor picks up. They have been brought up to speed. Jack tells them to do a forensic protocol search. Trevor says that they need to search local. Jack says to work up his contacts. Trevor finds a Diana White, who ran an escort service. She passed info to Saunders, and is still in Los Angeles. Jack asks for the file and ends the call.

Dr. Nicole Duncan tells Michelle that she's ready to start testing, but wants to start with Michelle. Michelle agrees. Duncan takes a nasal swab. They can have the results in two hours. They call the next person, which is Craig Phillips. Michelle walks away, looking at the long line of people ready to be tested.


Aaron Pierce unwraps a phone which was in the package Saunders sent. It is not contaminated, but its calls cannot be traced. David excuses him, and Wayne realizes that they can't get to him at all. The phone rings with an eerie tone. David picks up. Saunders reiterates not to try and trace the call. He wants Palmer to host a press conference about anything, but in it, he wants him to use the phrase "the sky is falling". Afterwards, he ends the call. David tells Wayne. Wayne thinks the phrase is a signal for an attack. David agrees. Wayne says that he can't do it. David says he needs to buy CTU some time before millions die. He tells Wayne to call the press conference.

05:23:43... 05:23:44... 05:23:45...



Chase is notified that Diana White is at home. He lets Jack know and goes over her service again. Jack says that it makes sense, and Saunders financed part of the operation through her. Chase asks Jack what happened to Saunders. Jack can't answer, but thinks that he was captured, and now holding the U.S. responsible because they left him behind. Jack then says that he left him behind.


Tony argues with National Health Services on the phone about a cure. They are unable to give him an answer, leaving him with a 100% mortality rate. Kim comes into his office, and is notified. Tony tells her that he barely spoke to Michelle after she questioned his capability of running the office. Kim tells him that she is there for him if she needs anything. Ryan Chappelle interrupts. Kim walks out.

Chappelle knows Tony was asking about Michelle. Tony says that she is his wife. Chappelle tells him they need concentration. Tony says he can do his job, but Chappelle says that he isn't doing it. He tells him to move on. Tony asks if he's supposed to act as if she is dead. Chappelle says yes. He tells him that if he can't focus, he can leave, but if he stays, he needs him at 100%. Tony decides to stay. Chappelle has been hunting for bank accounts. He wants to follow the money trail, both offshore and domestic. He wants Tony to help and coordinate with Division. Tony agrees.

At Diana White's house, Jack opens her gate and he and Chase proceed in.


They proceed carefully around the back of her house and pick a lock open. They go in, but Diana shoots at Jack. Chase is nowhere to be seen. Jack tells her not to shoot. Diana says that they're in her house. Jack shows his identification. Diana asks what he wants. Jack asks about Steven Saunders. Diana shoots at him again. Jack tells her to put the gun down. Diana tells him to do the same first.

Jack slowly puts his gun down. He steps out from behind the wall. Diana walks up to him, but Chase takes her down first. Jack holds her at gunpoint. She asks to get dressed first. Jack allows her to. Jack follows her into her room. She takes off her robe in front of him, and Jack asks about Saunders. Diana says that Stephen was to protect her, but left her. Jack says that she got intelligence about him through her service. Diana denies ever working for him. Jack doesn't believe her. He tells her to go with them, and tells Chase to call Trevor and let him know. Diana doesn't want to go without a lawyer. Jack tells her that since they are going to a foreign agency, her constitutional rights don't apply. They leave.

05:35:15... 05:35:16... 05:35:17...



Gael Ortega begins to succumb to the virus

Michelle walks through the basement when Dr. Duncan walks out of Gael Ortega's room. She says he doesn't have much time left. Michelle comments that the virus is fast. Michelle wants to see Gael. Duncan tells her not to. Michelle is not worried about being infected, and walks in. Gael is coughing uncontrollably. His face bloody, Michelle sees he is in extreme pain. He asks Michelle to tell his family that he loves them, and that he died quickly, with no pain. She agrees. He continues to cough. Michelle takes out her gun and points him to it.

Gael says that he was raised to believe suicide is a sin. Michelle says that no one would blame him for doing it. Gael expresses his doubt. He says that he only needed a few more seconds to stop the virus, and that he hesitated a moment because he was afraid. Gael blames himself for the suffering of the people. Michelle disagrees, and says that she's glad to have worked with him. She calls him brave, and will make sure his family knows. He continues coughing. Michelle picks up her gun, gets up, and leaves, looking sad. Gael continues to suffer. As she walks out of the room, Michelle holds back her tears. She composes herself and leaves.


Wayne tells David that the threat level is at red, and the F.B.I. is ready to stop any suspicious activity. David asks if the airports are ready to be closed. Against his objections, Wayne says yes. Palmer is introduced to the public, so he steps on the podium and begins his speech.

As Saunders watches, he announces that a threat level red exists throughout the U.S. He orders airports closed and flights grounded. He says that he is not doing this because the sky is falling, but would rather be safe. He asks for the help of those who love freedom to remain safe. He ends. The reporters clamor for questions, but Wayne interrupts them. David turns back and takes a few questions. Phil asks him if the U.S. is under attack. David says that this is a preventive measure. He asks what he is preventing, and if the people of the U.S. can accept what he's said. David says that he can't go into the nature of the threat.


Jack and Chase are fired upon at MI6

At MI6, Jack and Chase bring Diana White in. Trevor meets him. They've done some checking, and found that she's the owner of the Chinese Go Parlor where Saunders was last seen. She says that she hasn't seen him. Jack asks her if he would put himself in trouble for her. Trevor adds that they have the data on Saunders in their system on the ground floor. He says London wants to do as much as they can before transmitting. Jack then hears a helicopter. Just in time, he yells for everyone to get down as it rises to the level of the office and shoots out the windows. Diana is shot fatally. Trevor is also wounded.

A man keeps firing at the office. Chase is hit, but in his vest. He covers Jack as Jack goes to check on Trevor. Trevor is hurt, but gathers enough strength to tell him that the data is on server A-5. Chase and Jack get up and continue shooting at the helicopter, making their way to the stairs. The helicopter finally moves away. Jack says that MI-6 probably has incriminating evidence against him.

A hitman comes out of the door, but Jack shoots him. Another hitman fires automatic bullets at them. Chase shoots at him and Jack kills him through the wall. They continue down the stairs. Jack knocks open the door and finds a dead MI6 guard and an intruder. They reach the server room. Jack finds server A-5 as Chase checks out another dead guard. Jack gets a knife and picks the lock to open it. He then tries to get the file out of its socket, but hears a beeping. It is a bomb of C4. Jack tells Chase to get out. Chase stays as Jack gets the file. The beeping continues. Chase stays as Jack finally gets the file out. They run out just in time. The bomb explodes, destroying the server room.

05:49:25... 05:49:26... 05:49:27...



Michelle tries to call CTU, but sees a body being wheeled out. It is Gael, the first victim. She then calls Tony and tells him that Gael is dead. She tells him that he was suffering badly, and that there are children who will die in the hotel as well. Tony says that they can't do anything. Michelle disagrees, saying that field ops has a supply of capsules. Tony says that they are for field agents. Michelle says that they'd be used for preventing torture at the hotel at the choice of the people. Tony says he's not authorized. Michelle says that she's not interested in that. Tony says that this action would be mass suicide sanctioned by the government. Michelle says that it would be common decency. She says that if she's infected, she would know what she wants. Tony says he'll see what he can do. Michelle thanks him.


Jack calls Chappelle, and tells him about the attack on MI-6. He says that Saunders is definitely in L.A., and has a large organization here. He asks for anything he has. Chappelle is still trying to get through the money trails. Jack says that he is bringing the hard drive with the info on Saunders to CTU. He wants to start gathering the data as soon as possible. Chappelle goes to tell Chloe, but he sees Tony in a closet. Tony pulls out a briefcase. He tells Ryan that it's suicide capsules for the people at the hotel. Ryan tells him that it's against every rule in the book. He pauses, then tells him to do it. They both walk away.


From his apartment, Saunders can't get in touch with his men Pach or Young. His subordinate Osterlind tells him that they're dead. He says that Jack survived, but that the incriminating hard drive was destroyed, and Diana White was killed. Saunders says that he'll miss her. Osterlind now tells him that there are some inquiries about his bank accounts from Ryan Chappelle. Saunders knows Chappelle. Osterlind says that he's good at following money trails. Saunders excuses Osterlind.

Stephen Saunders calls the President

Split screen: The people of the hotel continue to be tested. Jack and Chase head back to CTU. Chloe works with Chappelle to get ready to strip the Saunders' hard drive. President Palmer sits in his office, waiting for an update.

Wayne goes in and says that there was an attack on MI-6. He says that Jack was able to get out, though. David asks if the attack was indicated by his usage of the sky is falling. Wayne doesn't know. Wayne tells him that the attack was carried out by helicopter. David asks the F.A.A. to coordinate with Homeland Security and the Border Patrol. His phone then rings. It's Saunders calling. Saunders tells him that his next assignment is preliminary of the next event. He wants Ryan Chappelle at CTU killed. He wants his body to be delivered to the train yard downtown at 7 AM. David flatly refuses, but Saunders tells him he'll use the virus elsewhere in the country. David tells Saunders that he is insane. Saunders hangs up. Wayne asks what Saunders wants. David is unable to answer.

05:59:57... 05:59:58... 05:59:59... 06:00:00

Episode credits[]



Guest starring[]



Production staff[]

Background information and notes[]

  • A hotel security guard is incorrectly credited as an infected hotel guest.
  • This is the only episode in Day 3 without Adam Kaufman.
  • Despite it being stated by Palmer in "Day 1: 2:00pm-3:00pm" that six of Jack's team supposedly died in Operation Nightfall, in this episode Jack says "five others died, including Saunders".
  • Only about 5 minutes passed after Saunders' first phone call to the President even though he said he would call back in 10 minutes.

See also[]

Wiki 24 has 53 images related to Day 3: 5:00am-6:00am.
Wiki 24 has a collection of quotations related to Day 3: 5:00am-6:00am.