Pulling out a spare bucket he had been using to gather foodstuffs, Scott agrees that it’s worth a shot and tells James and Volker to stand back while he steps closer to the structure’s opening. He takes a deep breath, then hurls the pail into the entryway and directly into the swirling blue energy vortex that occupies the space within. The maelstrom flashes white for an instant, then returns to its gentle pulsing with no apparent change. The bucket is nowhere to be seen, and James mutters that she didn’t think a plastic container would have much effect on an alien monolith. Scott glares at her, asking if she has any better ideas, before Volker steps between them and tells them both to shut up. He points at the vortex and says that something’s happening, and the others look up to see that he’s right.
The maelstrom glows even brighter, so bright that the three humans are forced to look away. Scott shouts that they should retreat to the treeline, and they begin pulling away from the obelisk. Then the vortex sends out a massive pulse that arcs out of the entryway, narrowly avoids hitting the away team, and slams into the ground several meters away. The ground is dug up and pushed aside by the impact, and a miniature crater crackles with blue energy for a moment before subsiding. Having ducked down behind a fallen tree trunk, Scott, James, and Volker peer over at the depression warily. They’re not entirely sure what to do next.
A ways away inside the shuttle, Chloe snaps her head up when she hears the crack of the energy discharge. Wray joins her in observation, wondering if they should investigate and see if anyone was hurt, but Chloe thinks they should stay put. After all, Scott told them to stay in the shuttle for good reason, and they still need to decipher why they've found a second one of these planets. Then they ran into this one immediately after turning around and heading back the way they came, and there can be no doubt that the two are connected. She overheard Rush mention that this system was literally right in front of them; had Destiny flown straight at it, it would have ended up in the exact center of the star. That can’t be a coincidence when one of these impossible planets is involved. Chloe doesn’t know what the encounter symbolizes, but she agrees that it can’t be random chance. Nor can it be ignored that they came across another one just as they were turning around from Destiny’s intended course. But what she would really like to know is why the planet is suddenly being consumed by ice and snow, turning it from an untouched paradise into an utter wasteland. Looking back out the window, she just hopes they haven’t stumbled across something they can’t handle.
Onboard Destiny, Brody has taken over diagnostics on the bridge when Rush and Eli finally return. Young asks where they ran off to and what they were doing, but the latter man uncharacteristically snaps back that he’ll explain later. The Colonel drops the questions for the time being, instead looking to Brody and requesting an update on their status. Pulling up another screen, the scientist answers that the stasis pods seem unaffected by the power fluctuations and malfunctions. He didn’t note any anomalies while he was checking them earlier, and it’s almost as if the interference is purposely being made to avoid that entire wing of the ship. The rest of their mainframe, however, hasn’t fared as well. There’s no damage as far as he can tell, something they should all be thankful for, but he sees no way to bring any of the primary or even secondary systems online. For the time being, they’re essentially prisoners on their own vessel. Watching while Rush and Eli resume their work, Young sighs and asks for a reassessment of how long it’ll be until the ship slides out of the beam. They still have a little over an hour to go.
Checking her watch on the planet, James notes that it’s been three hours since the obelisk became active. In all that time, they haven’t heard anything from Col. Young, something that’s worrying her more and more by the second. Taking the initiative, Scott vaults the tree trunk they were hiding behind and approaches the crater with his gun at the ready. He and James are nearly to the lip of the pushed up ground when they hear a low moan directly ahead, freezing them in their tracks. They glance at one another, nod, and sprint to the front of the depression shouting for anything inside to freeze. But neither of them were prepared to see two human women, one younger and red-haired and the other a slender brunette, lying naked in the dirt and opening their eyes to look at them. Confused, Ginn asks where she is and how she got there while Amanda Perry comes to. Not knowing what else to do, Scott tells James to go back to the shuttle and try to find some extra clothes. If she can’t find any, she, Wray, and Chloe can at least give up their jackets or an undershirt. He has no idea what’s going on anymore, but he’s beginning to think that the Colonel was right to question the wisdom in coming down to the surface. None of them notice that, back at the obelisk chamber, a second pulse has sent T.J. stumbling from within, looking around in confusion as the stone door slams closed behind her. Slamming her fists on it in anguish, she finally relents and moves to join the others, looking back at the obelisk with tears in her eyes.
Shortly after, Ginn and Perry are seated in the back of the shuttle in parts of the others’ outfits while Chloe and Volker give them some water from their rations. Draping her jacket over Amanda’s shoulders, Wray steps away and joins Scott outside, trying to figure out how any of this is possible. Laughing, Matt says that he’s officially given up on that. They’re standing on a planet that shouldn’t exist, watching an ice storm approach that shouldn’t be able to sustain itself, and now taking care of two deceased persons stored in Destiny’s memory. Speaking of which, he turns to a still-shaken Tamara and asks if she thinks there’s any sort of medical complication they might need to watch for. But T.J. just shakes her head absently, muttering that it’s just as strange for her, too. Concerned, Scott pulls her outside the shuttle entrance to make sure she’s OK, but she insists that it’s nothing that needs be discussed now.
Watching them, the others sit in an awkward silence for a long moment before Perry clears her throat. Saying that they might as well get this discussion out of the way, she asks why no one is telling she and Ginn what’s happening. They had assumed the crew found a way to transfer them into new bodies, but they’re now in perfect recreations of their original selves. Any ailments they had before are gone, including Amanda’s debilitating condition that confined her to a wheelchair and breathing tube, and she can’t understand how. Wray, Chloe, and James all look at one another uselessly, but Volker decides to throw an idea out there. The obelisk here is identical to the one on Eden, and it, like the other one, has shot a mysterious blue beam into space. Destiny had been doing a scan of their area from orbit, and it’s possible that the ship was hit when the ray went off; that would explain their inability to contact anyone else. And seeing as Ginn and Perry were ejected from said obelisk, it stands to reason that it’s responsible for their sudden appearance. If the beam really did hit the ship, it could have seen them quarantined in the database and, somehow, for some reason, reanimated them.
It may be the only explanation that really fits all the parameters, but James can’t see why the planet builders, assuming they’re the ones behind everything, would go through all this trouble just to bring Ginn and Perry to life. Furthermore, Chloe wonders why they would create another planet like this just to begin destroying it. None of it makes sense and none of it adds up. Everything about the last such world came together in a coherent, if mysterious, way. This time around it’s almost as if there are multiple forces at work and they’re just caught in the middle. Whatever the case, Ginn says she’s just glad that it happened. Stretching out a hand and looking it over, she whispers that it’s an amazing thing, to die and be reborn. Regardless of the circumstances or reasons, she won’t be one to complain.
In orbit, Destiny at last passes through the beam, its stern sliding past and letting it continue off into the depths of space. Young looks relieved when the lights and terminals finally stop flickering on the bridge, asking Rush if they have control again. Eli answers for him, confirming that systems stabilized and unlocked the moment they were clear of the ray. And now that the sensors are working properly, they can see the shuttle still parked on the surface. The interference is still blocking radio signals, but they should be able to use the ship and shuttle’s internal communications system to talk to the away team. Thanking him for the update, Young brings up the comm. array and hails the surface, asking if everyone down there is alright.
Returning from his talk with T.J., Scott slides into the pilot’s seat and toggles on his own array to reply. He says that none of them are harmed, but he has quite a revelation for Young--and Rush and Eli--when they’ve docked. The first thing the Colonel thinks to ask if whether or not Tamara is still with them, and he looks relieved when she replies that she’s there with the others. Letting her go to the planet was a risk from the beginning, given her belief in the one on Eden, and he’s glad nothing went wrong . Not that he has time to mull it over, since it’s just then that Rush notices the countdown clock has come back on. With the ice storm encroaching on the landing zone, he suggests the away team return now rather than risk getting caught down there. And he’d personally prefer they all get away from that obelisk as soon as possible. Without any objections, the craft lifts off and makes for orbit.
A day goes by while the crew comes to terms with what’s happened. Rush and Eli stand at the airlock and are stunned when it opens to allow Ginn and Amanda Perry to step into the corridor. Brody and Volker prepare to bring their shipmates out of stasis, knowing that they’ll need more than a skeleton crew as they head back toward Novus. And Young stands alone on the observation deck staring out at the swirling colors of the faster-than-light tunnel, only looking up when Tamara enters to speak with him. All this while the impossible planet is swallowed by ice and snow, blanketing everything in sight until, at last, it chokes off the obelisk and severs the beam.
Clearing her throat, T.J. says that there’s something she needs to tell Young, something about what she saw down on the planet. She’s been thinking it over, and she’s afraid that she was responsible for the beam’s activation, as she couldn’t resist going to the obelisk in the hope that it would prove their daughter was still alive. Young begins to reprimand her, unable to believe she would put the crew in such danger, but she interrupts. While she was inside the chamber, she found herself trapped, unable to leave the energy vortex but still able to see out the entrance. Only it wasn’t the second planet she was seeing, it was something else. A clearing with wooden huts, and a crowd of curious onlookers. Human onlookers, among them a beautiful baby girl.
She saw their lost crewmembers... and their daughter. She saw Eden.