Collect penicillin alternates
Sam and the Doctor discuss how long she'll need, and he says he'll tell everyone the Doctor has you out looking for penicillin alternates. Sam regrets not being able to let the Doctor use his equipment alone, but the Doctor says you helped to find the file, so you deserve to know what was in it: an audio recording from Paula. Sending you out on a run is the only way she can listen to it.
Doctor Myers is amused by the fact that Paula made a CD, but she's very nervous to listen to it. Paula greets Maxine, and says she needs to believe the Doctor is still alive to hear the recording. She says she knows Maxine would never judge her for what she's done and seen. She reveals that she thinks she knows who patient zero was.
Paula tells the Doctor that she was working on VS-72, and that the research facility on Tessandori Street contains the remaining notes. However, she says that only a handful of people could understand them, including Professors Van Ark and Huebner. She explains that they were working on cell regeneration, and that they'd had amazing results. Paula breaks down as she tells Maxine they expect to be overrun soon, and Doctor Myers asks to take a break.
Passing the TorchEdit
Paula explains how they were carrying out their first human trial. One of the test subjects - patient 29 - began to fall ill. Thinking it a normal fever, they sent him home. Overnight, patient 29 collapsed, seemingly dead, but then woke up and bit somebody. Paula begs Maxine to find patient 29 and discover what was different about him. That information may lead to knowing how the plague started. Finally, as she's signing off, Paula pleads with the Doctor to find the information and use it to develop a cure.
Sam returns to the comms shack. He sees that the Doctor's distressed, and pretends to have broken the comms desk in order to give her more time. She asks him to stay while she listens to the recording again.
MAXINE MYERS: So, can we, uh…
SAM YAO: Yeah, yup, it’s fine. I’ll tell them… well, how long do you think you’ll need?
MAXINE MYERS: Just a normal run should be fine.
SAM YAO: I’ll tell them it’s a meds run. I know you guys are okay for supplies for the moment, but I’ll say you’re running low on, um… cotton balls? Strepsils? Condoms?
MAXINE MYERS: Tell them we’re running low on penicilin alternates for people with allergies. It’s true, anyway.
SAM YAO: Okay. So, then… my corrugated iron shack is yours for as long as it takes. And, uh… call if you need me!
MAXINE MYERS: I’ll be fine.
SAM YAO: If I could find a way to let you use the equipment completely alone -
MAXINE MYERS: I know! But it’s okay. Runner Five could have died retrieving that box. If anyone deserves to know what’s in it, you do, Runner Five! In amongst some research notes and samples, Paula left me an audio recording, and um, I’m gonna play it now, for both of us. So… Runner Five, ready? Raise the gates! [gate siren] Covering fire! [gunshots] And… run!
MAXINE MYERS: She made a CD. A CD! Like it was 1998. [laughs] I guess she thought I’d be more likely to find something to play it on… or that rain wouldn’t damage it, like if she’d left me an iPod? Or maybe she wanted her iPod. Anyway, only one place to play a CD in this township, and that’s right here. Okay, I can do it, I can do this. [inserts CD into player] Here we go.
PAULA COHEN: Hello, sweetheart.
MAXINE MYERS: Oh.
PAULA COHEN: If you are my sweetheart, that is. I suppose anyone could be listening to this, but I’m choosing to put that thought out of my mind. This is for my Maxie. Because the phones have stopped working, and I need to believe you’re still alive, and that you’ll hear this, one day.
I love you. And I had to tell you, darling, best one. I want to imagine that I’m telling you what I saw, because when I imagine that I’m talking to you, I can feel your arms around my shoulders, and that makes it easier. I know you wouldn’t judge me, or panic. And you… you’ve always been able to calm me down when I felt afraid. I’m so afraid, Maxie… I’m just so scared! I think… Oh, Maxie, I think I know who patient zero was!
PAULA COHEN: I’m just going to try and tell you exactly how it was, okay? [puts on an accent] Just the facts, ma'am! [returns to regular speech] We were working on something, and… well, I don’t even know how to begin to explain it. If you’re Maxie listening to this, you’ll know what it was already. And if not, well, you’re looking for the research notes on VS-72 in the secure facility on Tessandori Street, and… well, I don’t know how you’d even get in there, and there are only about 15 people in the world who can understand those notes anyway, but, well, if uh, Professor Van Ark is still alive, you can try taking it to him. Or there’s Hubner, who I think is in Milan… [laughs] Can’t say I’m holding out hope. If you find it all, Maxie, you’ve probably got a better chance than most of working out what went wrong.
We were working on VS-72, which we thought - I know it sounds crazy, but you know I’m not - we thought we might help people. Really change the world, really make things better! It was supposed to… it was about cell regeneration. Like, making people heal more quickly, that was the aim. We’d been working toward it for more than ten years, and the first trials in rats were amazing. Beyond what we’d hoped. We saw some total limb regeneration! In adult rats! It was… well, we thought we’d win the Nobel Prize!
[rattling at the fence] We think they’re going to get in soon, the… people! The walking dead! We used to have soldiers here guarding us, but they’ve been picked off one by one. God, I miss you so much right now. I want to be able to talk to you because I think, together, we’d work out what to do, and… I miss snuggling up next to you! Holding you! I miss your arms around me, Maxine! I miss the way you smell! [sniffles] I’m starting to think I’ll never see you again! [cries] [recording cuts off]
MAXINE MYERS: I’m sorry, I… I need to take a break.
PAULA COHEN: [sobbing] We never meant any of this, Maxine, you know we didn’t. [sniffles] It was our first human trial of our “wonder drug”. Just two weeks ago. It seemed like we were going to save the world! We injected 50 people with their first shot, no problems. Sent them all home. And then one man, Patient 29 - his wife called. He’d started to run a fever. She brought him in, we took a look. Seemed like nothing serious. We sent him home. God. We sent him home. She called again the next morning. Overnight, he’d… the fever spiked. She took him to hospital. He collapsed, and they thought he had died. And then he woke up and bit someone.
We were so sure it had nothing to do with us. I mean, biting. Had to be rabies, maybe, or mental health issues. We were so sure. Until it was too late, we were so sure it had nothing to do with us. But Maxine, this happened to only one patient out of 50! There must have been something about him. There must have been something different. But you need to find them. Patient 29. I never knew his name, it wasn’t allowed. Patient 29. Go and look for Professor Van Ark’s files at Tessandori. Find out what was different about him. It’s the only way we can start to find out what’s happened.
[gunshots] [gasps] Oh! It’s okay… It’s okay, they haven’t broken through yet. But we think they will. Oh, Maxine! I wish I was with you right now! I wish I could go on talking to you forever. But we’re all taking a turn at recording a CD for someone in the hope that they’ll find it, so I have to stop in a minute. I’ll put this CD in a sample case with your name on it. [MAXINE MYERS cries in the background] We haven’t got very far, but we’ve been trying to make a vaccine. There should be a way. If it were only VS-72, there could be a way to stop it. If you find it, maybe you’ll succeed where we failed. We’re going to fail. There isn’t enough time.
Maxine… this is all I really have to say: I love you, I love you, I love you! [whispers] I love you. [recording ends]
[MAXINE MYERS sobs]
SAM YAO: Knock knock! I, uh… sorry, it’s not the start of a joke. Actually, you’re probably pleased it’s not the start of one of my jokes. Just, there are people waiting to use the - oh…
MAXINE MYERS: No, I’m fine, I’m fine! Just, give me a minute, I’ll be fine…
SAM YAO: Just a second. [to people outside the room] No, you can’t come in yet, there’s been a - ugh, yeah, I’ve arsed up the equipment again, sorry! Yeah, yeah, yeah, sorry! Sorry. I’ll sort it out. You’ll have to come back in a little while though, okay?
MAXINE MYERS: No, no, it’s okay, I can leave. It’s okay, there’s no reason to -
SAM YAO: They’ll be back in a little while. You can take your time. Um… do you want me to leave you alone?
MAXINE MYERS: No! Stay. I’m gonna play it again.
SAM YAO: Um… yeah, okay.
PAULA COHEN: Hello, sweetheart.
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