We open in 2043 and there’s no sign of Cole’s tracer. Jones tells them to stop looking, that Cole survived the splinter, but they are abandoned, Cole is just a memory now.
2015 in Manhattan we see a young Jones sitting with her father as she is trying to explain to him that she is interested in doing research in a US lab, though he doesn’t want her to waste her time. After she parts from him, she is stopped outside her home by Cassie who explains they have a mutual friend who is sick, dying, and needs her help. When Cassie can’t convince her to help Cole she uses a more forceful approach with a gun. That kind of persuasion usually works, and they go into Jones house where Cassie uses Jones’ research to convince her of what is going on. Back at Cassie’s place where Cole is being watched by Aaron, Cole awakes and asks where Cassie is but then seizes and foams at the mouth so Aaron calls Cassie to tell her Cole isn’t breathing and doesn’t have a pulse. She tells him to give Cole a epi shot, and while on the phone, Jones goes into the kitchen and gets a knife. At this, Cassie finally tells her that the future Jones sent Cole here, and now he is dying and needs her help.
Cole awakens to find he has been in and out of it a few days when in walks Cassie and young Jones, whom I will now be referring to as Katarina. At the sight of her he is blown away that she has always known him, and she suggests that perhaps his always and her always are not the same. (I see the name of the episode coming into play a lot) Katarina gets right to work requesting blood samples from him and heads upstairs while Cole tells Cassie he has basically given up.
In 2043 Jones tries to convince the other scientists to not give up, to keep researching the 12 Monkeys, Goines, Markridge, etc. During this research they find a new CEO was put in charge of Markridge in late 2015.
2015 in a Markridge conference room we see Jennifer Goines burst in with a “hostile takeover” as a majority shareholder in her father’s company. Back at Cassie’s, Katarina questions Cassie’s motives to help Cole, inferring he means more to her than she lets on. Cassie describes why she began to believe Cole, and the paradox that occurred with the watches. This gives Katarina an idea that using this time’s Cole, a 6 yr old boy, they can introduce a paradox into his system that will undo the damage from splintering. At this moment Aaron storms out and tells Cassie he isn’t interested in her quest to save Cole. He then make a call, probably to Olivia once Cassie leaves him and says he wants to make a deal. He is only interested in Cassie being saved. He meets her near the capitol and wants details about how to keep him and Cassie safe. It doesn’t matter if everyone else dies, as long as they’re ok.
Cassie and Katarina head to meet Cole’s father. On the way they discuss how to collect the sample of blood from young Cole, when Katarina gets sick and throws up, revealing she is pregnant, and has an appointment to abort as the father was married to her for 6 days before he left her. This must be the baby Hannah, as we see a small segment of Jones in 2043 going through a trunk of old baby things, and finds a card for the Northside Garage. This is the same garage Cassie and Katarina are headed to to meet Cole’s father Matthew. Cassie tells the man at the shop she is looking for Matthew Cole and that she if from the CDC and fears their family may be in danger of exposure. He tells them Matthew Cole ran the shop before, but is long gone. As they head back to the car they hear a swing, and go around the building to find young James Cole swinging.
At this discovery the man in the shop, Matthew apologizes, and says he must be careful due to James’ mother, who apparently was the paranoid one. Cassie decides to go with the truth and tells Matthew everything, to which he answers with a shotgun. Cassie mentions the 12 monkeys, and he seems to recognize this. He asks if Marion, James’ mother, told him about the army of the 12 monkeys, and that he needs to protect James from them. Cassie convinces him to come, meet Cole, look into his eyes. He agrees, and Cole gets yet another shock to the system at seeing his father.
We get a small glimpse into 2043 and some red leaves growing on the machine before we join 2015 again and Cassie is drawing blood from James. Cole walks into the room and both he and James get headaches as Katarina warns him to keep his distance. Cole heads back out of the room and has a very touching conversation with his father who explains the brief encounter with Cole’s mother and how she left him with Matthew because she couldn’t protect him. Matthew goes outside to process everything and Cassie comes out to join him when she gets a call from Aaron, urging her to meet him around the corner in a parking lot. She goes and he tries to get her to go with him, saying that they’re going to win as the Pallid man shows up in another car. Cassie races back into the house, grabs James, Matthew locks the door and heads out with Katarina, leaving Cole inside with the injection of James’ blood. Outside Matthew tries to protect them and gets shot and killed by the Pallid man while James, Katarina, and Cassie leave in a car. Inside the apartment Cole has been waiting for him, and injects himself, forming the paradox. He lifts up into the air and explodes in a huge ball of light and energy, blowing away the Pallid man, his men and everything in the apartment…. (see what I mean by the title)
Cassie returns to find Cole, naked on the floor. He has survived the blast and is renewed. She explains that his father was killed, Katarina has his younger self, and Aaron was the one that told where they were. They leave James with child protective services and Katarina decides to stop smoking and keep her baby. Cole offers to tell Katarina everything, but she declines, stating it could be disastrous if she knew more than she already does. The paradox has destroyed his ability to travel though time, he lives here now. As they are leaving, Cole is playing in the yard of child services, when a slightly boy offers to show him around. His name is Jose. (Hello little Ramse)
We end in 2043, where they have figured out the plant on the machine is just regular English ivy, and Jones wants to know why it is red and growing on the machine. The other scientist states this plant grew in an environment with significantly higher greenhouse gas concentrations. Simply, it is not from their time. Just then the alarm bells start ringing and we see Whitley has arrived, with a severed head, stating “they’re coming” over and over. Outside bodies are being laid out by incredibly pale men in black inquiring if the facility can for certain be accessed as the people inside are very important. Deacon assures him he can get them in.