“To create fear, hold up a mirror” - a Mi-Go monk adage - is shown on the screen.
Syd and David are discussing what to do about finding Farouk’s body now that the monk is dead. Syd suggests talking to her future self, but David says he and Future Syd are not on speaking terms at the moment. Syd asks if they’re still helping Farouk. David says no. Syd reminds him about the end of the world and they begin arguing as Ptonomy watches from inside the mainframe.
In the mainframe, Ptonomy sees more of the life of Admiral Fukuyama. He’s at a university and an older man asks him about the book he’s reading, a book by Sigmund Freud. The older man remembers being a student at the school during an era when people’s thoughts were private. Now there are those listening and watching, telepaths and the like. There is a plan to create a mind that cannot be read to keep the secrets of senators, presidents, and other important people. The older man says Fukuyama was chosen because of his healing gift. Fukuyama was only 17 at the time when they turned him into the living machine. Ptonomy see the woman who was rocking in Fukuyama’s room sitting in her rocking chair reading a book to Fukuyama as he sleeps.
Ptonomy follows a cut cord to another room of the mainframe. He finds the Mi-Go monk there as well. He reaches out and sees into the monk’s memories.
Ptonomy reaches out and touches a wall of the mainframe and takes control of one of the Vermillion. He leads the Vermillion into the cafeteria where he finds David. He reveals himself to David and tells David that he’s preserved in the machine. He knows where to find Farouk’s body.
Farouk uses Oliver’s body to visit a woman in a retirement home that he knew a long time ago when he had his own body. Future Syd told him where to find her. She asks about the Professor, but Farouk says the Professor is not there. He asks about his body. She asks for “the endless dream” in return.” She shows him where his body is and he gives her the endless dream.
David considers who to take with him to find Farouk’s body and how to use them and comes up with a plan.
Lenny remains in her cell, struggling to maintain her grip on reality. David finds her there. He asks if there’s anything of Amy left in that body, but Lenny is having a hard enough time believing that she’s really where she is. David kisses her forehead and she sees glimpses of David’s plan for her.
David finds Cary and Clark in the hall. He shows them a piece of his plan involving a giant tuning fork.
David leaves Syd a note that reads, “Gone to kill the monster.” She uses the compass necklace to track him.
David appears in a dessert and heads for a rock structure that looks like a thumb. Oliver recites a poem as he drives with the Shadow King.
Syd talks to Clark. She says it may be her fault for pushing David away. Clark thinks maybe it’s David. She tells Clark that David left again, but he hasn’t told her where he was going. She says she’s going after him. Clark remembers that he once loved a boy in the army who kept jumping out of planes to get away from him. Then one day, the boy’s parachute didn’t open. Syd thinks back on her relationship with David and feels like things are different now. David wants her to admit that David is unwell. Syd doesn’t agree to that, but wonders if he can tell the difference between real and unreal, good and evil. Syd wonder who teaches someone to be normal when they’re one of a kind. Syd admits she doesn’t trust David. Clark reminds Syd of what David is powerful enough to do if she hurts his feelings too badly. Syd says she’s going after David because love is what they have to save if they’re going to save the world. Melanie overhears all of this.
David sets his plan into motion. He psychically unlocks Lenny’s cell for her and she runs out and escapes on a motorcycle.
The Shadow King continues to travel by rickshaw. He knows he’s close to his body. He says time and space is relative where they are, that the earth changes frequently, sometimes by the hour. It is part of the attempt to guard Farouk’s body. David will be stuck there forever unless he figures out the secret.
David finds a water pump in the desert that provides only a drop of water. Syd parachutes out of a plane overhead. She’s angry at him for leaving on his own. They continue to search for the moving monastery.
The narrator reveals the most disturbing delusion of all, the delusion that other people don’t matter, that their needs don’t matter. The narrator describes Plato’s allegory of the cave, where people only see shadows of reality and not reality, and thus the shadows are real to them and reality is rejected as incomprehensible. It goes on to wonder what happens if you’re out in the world but you don’t see it because you’re not looking because you trust that the world you see through the prism of technology. Only here, it’s not the shadows that are false, but the people. It is the delusion of the narcissist who believes only they are real and everyone else is an unfeeling shadow. Other people’s feelings are not real because the shadow people aren’t real. If everyone lives in caves, no one is real, not even you. How strange would the world look if you finally woke up and looked at the real world after living a life looking at shadows?4comments
A storm covers the desert. David and Syd find a tent and go inside. They find skeletons of themselves inside the tent. David tells Syd that they’ll go home after this and get a place of their own.
Clark wakes up with David’s plan in his head. He tells Clark to find “the clock of the long now.” Clark gets up and is walking down the hall when Melanie hits him from behind and drags him off. Time rewinds to show the Shadow King corrupting Melanie and bringing her under his control.