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Episode 26 Transcript: "The Show Must Go On"

Episode opens with view of giant overhead grid/spotlights, then pans down to aerial view of Paradigm City.

Cut to close-up of Big Ear's unblinking eye. We hear him calmly speak: "Understand, Roger, this city was created to be a stage, with no memory prior to 40 years ago. It's nonsense to ask if memories exist. I just thought I would let you know."

Camera cuts to ripped front page of newspaper. The headline reads: "The Big (blank) Win!" with the center word torn out. The picture beneath is of Big Fau facing Big O.

Scene returns to Big Ear. He looks dead, and the skin has been ripped off the right side of his face, revealing him to be an android. The scene widens and we see he is still seated, albeit slumped over, at his usual spot in the tavern; however the bar is in ruins. We hear him speak again (though his mouth never moves), his voice now hollow and metallic: "By the way, aren't you going to be the knight in shining armour and rescue the maiden?" At that point, the roof finally collapses, burying him completely.

Scene cuts to ruined street in city; we see Big Fau and Big O facing off on opposite sides of a crater. Alex is sitting confidently in Big Fau's cockpit, a smug little smile on his face.

Big O makes the first move, stepping forward.

Big Fau responds by raising its snake-like shoulder lasers and firing at Big O. The black megadeus raises its forearm shields, protecting itself as it charges forward. Big Fau keeps firing, but has no effect.

Cut to Roger. "Hey, Alex!" he yells fiercely. "I think it's time that you taste the people's rage!" Big O swings its right arm back, then punches forward violently towards Big Fau's head. The air piston discharges, but the blow is blocked by a force field. Roger is taken aback, having not expected this, yet continues punching furiously. Not one blow makes contact. The barrier is too strong.

The citizens who repaired Big O stand in the ruined streets surrounding the two Bigs and watch silently. This fight is televised throughout the city; people everywhere are watching on the public monitors. They can see Big O continue to press forward, forcing Big Fau backwards even though the force field still shields the white megadeus.

Dastun is also watching the action on one of the outdoor tvs. He is startled to see all of the nearby tanks suddenly take aim at Big O. "Huh?" he mutters aloud. "Howitzer units--what are you doing?" Now in his squad car, he frantically calls M.P.H.Q. and yells, "You're targeting the black megadeus, you idiots!"

He is stunned by Dispatch's response: "Edict from the Paradigm Home Office, sir."

Dastun: "They'd go that far to use us?"

There is a close-up shot of Dastun's police badge, clearly stating his position of colonel.

Scene cuts back to Big O, still stubbornly (and ineffectively) punching at Big Fau. Alex is sitting calmly in the cockpit, arms crossed. He says disapprovingly, "It has absolutely no elegance at all. A clumsy megadeus piloted by a false domineus." The cockpit shudders as we hear the muffled blows. There is a close-up of the horizontal memory core mounted behind Alex (It looks like a hourglass lying on its side, with the sand replaced by green light.) The memory core swings from side to side, like a hamster in a wheel.

Roger continues to pummel Big Fau's force field, but all he's doing is pushing the white megadeus backwards. He growls in frustration.

Big Fau finally takes the offensive. A portion of its right forearm begins to spin rapidly and punches forward. Big O raises its left forearm shield, blocking the blow, but is pushed backwards by the force of it. Big Fau's corrugated wrist begins to spin rapidly next. The white megadeus hits Big O's head with it, dragging the spinning portion across the red helmut and face of the black megadeus. Roger flinches inside the cockpit; we see the ground give way a bit beneath Big O's feet. Big O bends forward at the waist from the blow; when it straightens up, what's left of the helmut cracks and falls off.

Alex laughs triumphantly at this.

Cut back to Dastun. He rushes his squad car to the line of tanks and parks in front of them, as if trying to block them on his own. They are all aimed at Big O. Dan leaps from the car and faces the officers manning the tanks.

"What the hell is going on out here?" he demands furiously. The men can't meet his eyes, looking down at the ground as if ashamed. Dastun continues to scold them: "Is this the best the Military Police can do?"

The men mumble uncomfortably as he glares at them. He is utterly furious.

Meanwhile, a superior officer walks over, slapping his baton in the palm of his hand in a threatening manner. This officer says to Dastun: "Colonel Dastun--your commanding orders and actions are meant to serve the New Order." The mustachioed officer stands in front of the thoroughly cowed men, and faces Dastun. He continues speaking sternly: "However, you are no longer a Military Police Commander."

Dan stares at him for a moment in disbelief. Finally the reality of the situation sinks in. Snarling, Dastun rips the gold police shield from his uniform, shocking everyone there (including the superior officer.) Dan flings the badge to the ground in angry disgust.

Cut back to Big O. It raises its arms but is punched hard in the face. The Military Police all turn at the sound of metal against metal, startled. We see Big Fau, its upraised wrist spinning like a drill, standing over Big O, which is falling slowly to the ground.

The black megadeus fires its hip chains, anchoring them to the crater wall behind Big Fau--this keeps Big O from falling down the precipice behind it. It pulls itself upright, then reveals its heavy missile batteries. Roger fires all of them pointblank. There is a huge explosion, and flaming smoke obscures Big Fau completely. Big O's hip chains fall away from the black megadeus. Roger watches his viewscreen carefully, waiting for the air to clear.

The police are all staring too. Dastun says hopefully, "So did he--get him?"

Cut back to Roger. He is terribly tired, can barely keep his head up, yet he remains alert to any movement on the red viewscreen. We can see the smoke begin to clear, revealing Big Fau, apparently unharmed. Roger gasps and sits up straight. He grabs the joystick, ready to return to the fray.

Big Fau pulls its right arm back, wrist and forearm both spinning madly like drills, and punches straight at the cockpit doors.

Roger cries out, his eyes wide with fright.

Dastun watches in horror, yelling, "Roger!"

Cut to R.Dorothy. She sits up at that exact moment, her empty eyes still pale green. Beck leaps away from her, almost panicked by her sudden wakening. He stammers, "How--How's she doing that!?" We can see her disc drive is still empty.

Cut back to the two Bigs. Big Fau is holding onto the limp black megadeus's left leg, dragging it through the ruined streets like a rag doll. The cockpit doors have been broken, and Roger is lying unconscious in the pilot seat.

Dastun frantically takes off after them in one of the howitzer tanks, scattering the officers standing about in the street. They watch him in astonishment. As Dastun follows the giant robots, he thinks, "Roger, ya gotta hang in there--I'm with ya on this!" (image of Roger still out cold)"WAKE UP! and take that bastard DOWN!"

Cut to Big Fau still dragging Big O. Citizens are watching the public monitors throughout the city. They all look unhappy, frightened, concerned. The live images on the tv are intercut with tapes of a triumphant Alex dancing on Big Fau's palm, the words, "We Have a New World" scrolling beneath the images.

Cut to R.Dorothy standing on her usual perch, atop the roofledge of Roger's home. Beck is standing behind her, unable to fathom what has happened. He asks her in a baffled voice, "Hey, you! Do you actually know who you are?" As he speaks, the camera pans across her face. Her eyes are still pale green, her disc drive still empty. She ignores him, staring towards the city instead. Beck falls silent, watching her, then turns as something catches his attention in the distance. The camera pans across the ledge, so we see the ruined distant city, Dorothy's legs. We then see Big Fau dragging Big O. Beck seems terribly disturbed by all this. He looks down, growling, "Damn it!" and slams his fists against the top of the ledge where Dorothy is standing. He bends over as if in great pain, then straightens up, yelling in frustration: "I can't believe I'm such a BUFFOON!" He raises his hands to hs face as if in dispair, crying out wordlessly.

We next see Berg standing quietly on the roof behind them. He watches Dorothy and Beck, a thoughtful expression on his narrow face.

Cut to edge of city, where the old city is mostly submerged in the sea. The remaining buildings on the shore jut out like high cliffs. Big Fau walks to the very edge of one and dangles the limp Big O upside down over the precipice. Roger is still unconscious. Alex is smiling smugly, then glances at movement visible on his viewscreen. He sees Dastun entering a tank behind him.

Alex: "I have to say the human race continues to surprise me." As he speaks, the camera cuts to Dastun loading massive shells into the howitzer.

Dan says to himself: "All this time, Roger Smith and Big O have saved the people of this city." He moves to the controls. "Well, now this is the least I can do." He takes aim at the white megadeus. "And with pride in my heart, I turn against you!" Dastun fires, hitting Big Fau's back directly. As the smoke clears, we see the white megadeus is unharmed.

Alex: "In honor of your many years of service, I think I'll crush you once and for all." He activates the snakelike shoulder lasers and takes aim at Dastun's tank.

Dan sees this in his viewfinder and gasps.

Alex flicks the switch.

There is a sudden barrage of shells fired from a line of MP tanks, attacking Big Fau and shaking it violently. Alex is unable to fire the lasers.

Dastun exits his tank and is astonished to see two platoons of tanks before him. He hears someone on a bullhorn announce; "Back off! All members of Anderson and Rodberry Squad have turned in their badges!" Dastun's face softens. "Well, what do ya know?" he murmurs, touched.

Cut to Alex in the cockpit. He is sitting with his head bowed. He says, "Oh? You want me to teach you what happens to watchdogs who bare their teeth at their master, do you?" He looks up, a cruel expression on his face. "This world has a new order now. It has a new god! Tell me, do the lives of people who don't serve the new order have any value?"

As he speaks, the hourglass-shaped memory behind him trembles from side to side again. We see cables shimmy snakelike behind him too.

Alex: "Yes, of course. Power must be demonstrated to the ignorant." He rears back in his seat, eyes wide, face contorted: "Hey, dad! You were nothing but a coward and a puppet! Well, I'm neither one of those and I'm gonna prove it!" He lunges forward, his face contorted in almost insane triumph.

At that moment the cables behind him pull free from their housings and thrust themselves into Alex's back. He cries out in surprised pain, hunching over the controls. The slender cables move as if alive.

Cut to shot of Angel's upper back. Her shoulder birthmarks suddenly glow a soft pink. She is on the floor, her upper body draped over a tv monitor showing her draped over a monitor, etc. Her face is buried in her arms as she weeps. We hear Gordon gasp as the glow strengthens (he is standing behind her.)

Gordon stammers: "It's the...memory...desperately wants to be remembered."

Angel continues to cry as if her heart is broken.

Cut back to Alex. He straightens up and screams. As he does so, the snakish lasers on Big Fau's back begin firing at random. They cut across the line of tanks; there are explosions. We see Dastun shielding his eyes and scowling.

Cut to Big O, still being dangled upside down over the water. Roger finally comes to. He is briefly disoriented. "What th? What's going on, what happened?" he groans. Suddenly the situation hits him, and his eyes widen. "Big O, can you move?" We see Roger's foot quickly flex the floor pedal. Big O responds, attempting to pull itself up at the waist.

Alex notices Big O's frantic struggle to regain its feet. He reacts swiftly, shouting, "I'm going to send you and that giant coffin to the bottom of the sea!" He flings Big O out over the ocean. As the black megadeus falls, it fires two of its hip chains up, and they wrap around Big Fau's neck, pulling the white megadeus into the sea as well.

Dan runs to the edge of the building, screaming, "ROGER!"

Cut to R. Dorothy. "Roger," she says softly, without inflection. Beck is still beside her, bent over the ledge, utterly confused. "Unnhn! I just don't get it. How can you be functioning without your memory?"

Cut to the two Bigs sinking rapidly. We see all the air is escaping from Big O's breeched doors. Roger's cockpit is rapidly filling with water; he inhales sharply, well aware of the consequences.

Big Fau spins its wrist cuffs quickly, like propellers. It turns and moves through the water, dragging Big O behind it. We can see a vast city beneath them. As Big Fau starts to ascend, the chains break. Big Fau escapes. We hear Alex laugh as Big O sinks down into the watery depths, air bubbles marking its path.

At that exact moment, R.Dorothy screams, "ROGER!"

Big Fau emerges from the sea, striding purposefully down the city street. Cut to Alex, the cables firmly attached to him. He is talking to the megadeus: "Are you trying to absorb me into your systems, Big Fau? I'm not like that pitiful reporter, or even that snickering cyborg. I am a true domineus, the one and only!" As he speaks, the memory core shivers again.

Cut to Big O, still sinking. Camera looks up, from Roger's perspective. We see the surface light fading, the black submerged buildings looming higher and higher on either side as if closing in. We hear Dorothy's voice calling "Roger" like a distant echo, and Big O's eyes light up. Cables inside the cockpit snake through the water towards Roger as if to join him to Big O like Alex is now joined to Big Fau. Just before they attach, Roger softly says, "Big O." The cables pause as if listening to him. Smith continues, "Is this what you want? If you do this, you and I will become one being. But I've ALWAYS been with you, isn't that right?" Big O's eyes stop glowing. Roger continues: "Right. This IS my decision." We see Roger's mouth just above the waterline. He smiles a sad little smile.

Cut to Dorothy, who says, "Roger Smith...made his decision..." Beck is listening, getting very upset. He presses his palms to the sides of his face, his eyes squeezed shut, grimacing as if he has a terrible headache. Finally he shouts, "Stop it already! What the hell are you talking about?" He begins to cry, but is startled by Berg's stern voice: "Dorothy!"

Beck looks up to see the butler holding a wetsuit and a large scuba airtank. Beck is confused and says to Norman, "What are you doing? You crazy? Crow-boy is dead, and you KNOW it!"

R.Dorothy calmly brushes past Beck to go to Norman.

Beck falls on his knees, holding his head again. "Oh, memories!" he groans. "What the hell ARE they?"

Berg replies: "Memory is something found in the human form." He turns towards the redhead, and says, "Shall we, Dorothy?" The pair turn to leave.

Beck looks up, very upset. He pulls out a gun, and says, "Hold it."

Norman and Dorothy stop and face him.

Beck: "I hate them." He stands up, still pointing the gun at them. He continues speaking: "Both of them, the black guy and the white guy, but..."

Cut to Gordon and Angel. They are walking through another part of the underground complex. Angel is leaning on the old man for support.

Angel: "I'm a memory? How can a woman as unreliable as me, who knows nothing about herself, be a memory?"

Gordon: "Memories by nature are unreliable. They'll degenerate and become fradulent while inside people's minds. People subconsciously create these stories called memories."

They enter a dark room and the door swings shut behind them. As it closes completely, the room they just exited suddenly looks like a negative from a color print, then everything vanishes, leaving only a brilliant white room with a glowing green grid marking the floor (kinda like a holodeck from Star Trek.)

Gordon and Angel are in an elevator. The floor is B599, and as the elevator moves the number changes to B600, B601, etc. Cut back to Angel and Gordon. She is sitting on the floor, he is standing and holding Roger's copy of Metropolis.

Angel says slowly: "All I wanted was my own memories. I don't know what happened 40 years ago, and I don't really care."

Gordon: "Yes, I understand, and because of that, nothing will have existed forty years ago." Cut to closeup of the book. We clearly see its title and the name "Gordon Rosewater" beneath it.

The elevator drops into the darkness.

The image fades into that of Big O, also dropping into darkness. Only a few air bubbles still trail from it--most of the air is gone.

Roger is still conscious. He muses aloud, "If I'm cut, I bleed. I have plenty of faults." There is only a small air pocket left; even his mouth is now submerged. His eyes are closed, his skin greyish, he looks completely exhausted. He cntinues thinking to himself: "I've always been the same man called Roger Smith. This may all be true, but still...who am I?"

We see Big O falling past enormous sunken machines, pistons, gears.

Cut back to elevator. The floor number reads B666. Cut to interior. Angel is still huddled on the floor in the corner, her face buried in her arms.

Angel: "I just...want to go back."

Gordon stands in front of her, holding the book against his chest. He asks her, "With the memories of what time? At what point in time? You have the power to either contain or release them, even those memories of events prior to 40 years ago."

The elevator stops and the door opens. Angel stands up. They face an enormous room whose only source of light seems to be the white floor marked with a green grid. It is empty save for something large and bright white at the very far side of the room. It is shaped vaguely like a prairie dog. They stare at it.

Angel: "So then, now I'M the one making the choice?" She pauses, then steps out of the elevator and walks towards the white object. As she does so, two wing-like streamers of energy flash towards her and connect at her shoulders. They lift her and she floats swiftly towards the object. The scattered bits that fall off look like snow-white feathers.

Gordon watches in open-mouthed amazment. He still holds the book tight against his chest. He steps out of the elevator (which now appears to be a multidimensional door) and holds the book aloft, directly over his head. He cries out reverently: "Hear me, author of this book! Fill in the blank pages with memories!"

White light spills out from between the closed covers, and the book opens on its own. We see hundreds printed pages flip past rapidly as the light brightens. Finally the light pours out, obscuring the pages completely. As the light fades, the remaining pages are now completely black.

At that point, the door, Gordon, and the book freeze, turn into negative images of themselves and begin to fade away. Just before he vanishes, Gordon cries out: "It's up to you, Negotiator!"

He disappears, then the door goes away too.

Cut to distant white object. A glow suddenly surrounds it.

Cut to Big O, then Roger. There is a soft glow in the cockpit, and Roger half-opens his eyes. Cut to outside shot again. The megadeus is dwarfed by the machinery outside, like an ant in an engine. The mysterious submerged equipment seems to go on forever.

Roger glances up towards a white sunlike light glowing in the watery green. He is thinking, his words slow: "This world..." The ball of light suddenly brightens and rises. Its brilliant beams streak out, so intense one seems to actually go through Roger's left eye and out the back of his head. He screams soundlessly, yet we hear his thoughts: "This world, what is it?" He starts seeing visions again: Paradigm City whole and undamaged, the photo of Gordon and Roger shaking hands, the city under attack during the Event, endless rows of Big Os marching shoulder-to-shoulder, a sky full of Big Duos raining death, a devastated city with the robot dragon from "Leviathan" wrecking havoc, Big O reaching down for something, the city in flames with even the sky glowing a lurid orange, then a giant new fire-colored megadeus looming god-like over the city, its grinning skull-like face looking demonic as it shoots yellow lasers at everything around it. We then see a broken Big O, then an interior shot of its cockpit. We see a corpse of Roger Smith, but it's not quite our Roger Smith. This dead man is dressed entirely in white, and is strapped into the pilot's seat, unlike the familiar version of Smith.

Close-up of Roger's left eye, lit up by a circle of intense white light. "No," he groans, watching the visions. Again we see Paradigm whole, the photo of the two men shaking hands, then the sequence changes. We are in downtown Paradigm, the empty streets and buildings unharmed. Almost magically, people appear in small groups, until the entire city is full of life again. We see images of the city Roger saw in Act 14 too, including himself wandering alone and confused.

Cut back to Roger's white-lit eye. "No!" he says in a strangled voice as the visions change again. Suddenly he sees an assembly line of robot skeletons. As they move through a kind of pressing machine, they emerge on the other side as perfect replicas of Smith, black suit, perfect hair, and all. "NO!" he screams, as the camera returns to a closeup of his eye.

Cut to tv monitor. We see images of Roger from earlier episodes playing on it. A woman's hands caress the screen; we see she is wearing a pink blouse. We next see a model kit of R. Dorothy, with a finished doll standing on top of the instructions. It is picked up by a woman's hand.

Cut to the stage set of Angel's childhood. We see two actors running through a scene, and we also see Angel watching them. We are behind her.

Cut to front view of Angel. She is clutching a copy of Metropolis to her bosom. We hear Roger's puzzled voice over this image: "You?"

Cut back to Roger's left eye, still illuminated by light but not quite so brightly. We see his hair waving gently over his forehead, as if he is completely underwater now.

Roger thinks: "These memories you're seeing...they're--"

Cut to Dorothy's face; she is underwater in her wetsuit, and cries out: "ROGER!"

The light in Roger's eye goes out. He IS totally submerged. His eyes wide with shock, he turns (as if rudely awakened) towards the voice. A few air bubbles escape from his mouth.

Cut back to what's left of the city. We see someone's feet on paving stones. The ground begins to tremble, we hear deep rumbling, and light begins to glow between the stones. The camera pans up, and we see the feet belong to Dastun. He is supporting a wounded officer.

Dan: "What the?"

Camera pulls back. We are behind Dan and the officer. They are in the middle of the street, skyscrapers on either side of them. Other officers are milling about. An intense glow appears before them, and a ball of white light ascends swiftly from the ground before them. It looks exactly like the ball of light Roger had seen underwater. It glows like a minature sun, rising to the gigantic gridwork far overhead. It seems to increase in size and brilliance.

Alex (still in Big Fau's cockpit) watches this in surprise. "What's happening to my world?" he wonders aloud, puzzled.

The light fades, and the gridwork/spotlights seem to fade with it into greyness, as if a fog was obscuring everything.

Camera pulls back, so that we can observe Paradigm and its sky from a distance. The sky is flat grey as if fogged in. Then the greyness seems to quickly break up into the clouds we normally associate with Paradigm. The clouds swiftly darken directly over the city and we can see dark spots far overhead, like shadows from the spotlights. This in turn rapidly gives way to brilliant blue clouds directly over the city, but high above these clouds we see a blinding white ceiling netted with a fine grid of glowing green lines, again like a holodeck.

Cut back to Roger in Big O's cockpit. Dorothy really is there in a wetsuit. She grabs the mouthpiece of her oxygen tank and places it over Roger's nose and mouth. Roger thinks "Dorothy" in silent surprise as she does this. He takes a breath.

Somehow Dorothy restores the air-tight integrity of the cockpit and fills it rapidly with oxygen from her tank. Roger retches violently as he catches his breath, coughing water out of his lungs. He glares at the redhead, and chokingly snaps at her: "DOROTHY! You COULD have come up with a gentler way to bring me around, you know--" He pauses, then continues sheepishly, "...Uh, like mouth to mouth or something?"

Dorothy looks at him acidly, her eyes jet black again, and tartly replies, "Not with the displacement capacity of my air tank. You're such a louse, Roger Smith."

Roger smiles slightly, a silly, pleased expression on his face. "Heh! You're definitely R. Dorothy," he replies almost teasingly.

Cut to Big O now standing upright on the sea bottom. It crouches down so that its fists are against the ground. The air pistons release, hurtling the black megadeus up to the surface. He reaches the shallow part of the bay and breaks the water's surface. We see the strange new sky above the black megadeus.

Dan rushes to the shore, thrilled to see they've survived. "Roger," he murmurs, and smiles with relief.

Cut back to Roger's house. Beck is sitting crosslegged on the roof ledge. When he sees that Big O has returned, he collapses backwards in laughter, clapping his feet in delight.

Cut to Big Fau's viewscreen. We see Big O on it, marching through the city. Alex growls at the screen, "You plan on remaining half-dead forever? Big Fau, I give you all that I am now!" He lunges at the screen, then sits back, raising his arms above his head. "I know that's WHAT you WANTED!"

We see the memory core behind him tremble violently again. Finally it turns itself over and looks exactly like an hourglass, with the green energy in it pouring down to the bottom half like sand. The energy also changes color, turning red.

Big Fau turns towards the sound of Big O's footsteps. The white megadeus is standing outside of the largest remaining dome. Big O approaches, then stops, facing the other Big.

Big Fau raises both arms, its wrists and hands spinning rapidly in different directions. The interior structures of both forearms are missiles, the hands the warheads...they fly straight towards Big O, but are oddly slow.

Big O reaches out with both hands and grabs the two spinning warheads with ease.

Alex, shocked, groans in disbelief.

Big O raises its arms straight up, still holding the white hands/warheads firmly. It squeezes them both gently, exploding them. No harm comes to the black megadeus.

Cut to Roger. He has a determined expression on his face. Suddenly the control panel slides away from him; he watches in surprise as a new one clicks into place, with a central joystick. "What is all this?" he asks in susrprise. Smith turns towards Dorothy, who is standing behind and above him on a ledge. Big O has connected its cables to her disc drive. Roger seems startled by all this: "Uhn! Dorothy?! How did you know?"

Dorothy gravely replies, "I was informed by a buffoon with curly hair and gaudy clothing."

Roger turns away. "That son of a gun," he comments, then laughs. He reaches for the new joystick and grasps it with both hands, his right thumb poised on the red button on its top. He shouts: "Big O! Final stage!"

Cut to exterior of Big O. It first anchors itself to the ground with chains. Its forearm shields expand explosively, then its shoulders spread out from the upper torso. Finally the central round gold panel in the middle of its chest (directly below the red cockpit) opens and a massive laser cannon is extended.

Alex is frightened by all this. "Agh! The Big O!" he cries. Big Fau then reveals new shoulder weapons too. A pair of massive laser guns come out, one on each shoulder.

They fire at each other simultaneously. The beams meet and explode, the force shoving both Bigs backwards and utterly shattering the last dome to bits.

We see Alex screaming inside Big Fau, the entire cockpit filled with painfully blinding white light.

Cut to Big O. It is still standing, unharmed. The cannon breaks off its chest and falls to the ground, cracking to pieces.

Great billows of smoke fill the air where Big Fau stood. Both Roger and Dorothy watch intently. Roger still has both hands tight on the joystick.

We hear Alex laugh. "You're weak, Roger Smith." We see the hourglass behind Rosewater's head. The red sand has almost run out of the top. Alex continues to mock Roger: "When all is said and done, you're just a Negotiator!"

Big Fau has survived the blast, but just barely. Its entire left side is missing. The white megadeus aims its remaining laser gun at Big O.

Roger scowls, frustrated and angry.

Alex prepares to fire. "DIE!" he yells as the gun powers up. Behind Big Fau, we see the skeletal remains of the last dome and the strange new holodeck-sky. Suddenly a brilliant white light appears from the ground behind the white megadeus. Then a demonic-looking shadow rises in the light. It is tremendous, dwarfing the entire city. It looks like the fire-colored grinning megadeus of Roger's underwater visions. The shadow shrinks and solidifies. It IS that megadeus, but it looks like a negative image of itself, all white and blue, almost glowing from within.

Alex glances back and sees it. "A Big?" he mutters, mystified and a little frightened.

Cut to Big O's cockpit. Dorothy recognizes the newcomer, and says, "Big Venus. A bird whose wings have been plucked."

Roger is startled by her words and completes the phrase: "...Will turn into the beast it was before it evolved into a bird."

We see Big Venus take a step forward. The ground beneath its massive foot fades away, revealing more of the white hologrid. As the Big advances, everything around it vanishes, leaving only the sterile white and green grid.

Alex, seeing this, is utterly terrified and trembles violently with fear. Big Venus moves toward the damaged Big Fau.

Alex frantically tries to work the controls. His arms and legs are wrapped and restrained in cables. Nothing is functioning. He screams, choking in his panic.

Big Venus moves past him, and Big Fau and Alex vanish into nothingness, leaving only the pristine grid behind. Roger watches this, his eyes wide with fear, breathing heavily.

Big Venus now strides towards Big O. The black megadeus's eyes flash. Roger says, "Big O, wait!" He gets out of the pilot seat and gracefully leaps forward to the open front of the cockpit. "This one is for me to handle."

Dorothy watches silently.

Roger stands calmly in the open cockpit, watching the strange new Big approach. He begins to speak earnestly: "Memories are very precious to people's lives. They give us the opportunity to prove to ourselves that we exist! And if we lose them, we have an unrelenting feeling of uncertainty."

Big Venus continues to stride forward, and the world continues to vanish in its wake.

Roger continues: "You must listen to me! The humans that are living here and now in the present are made up of more than their memories of the past."

All that is left are the two megadeuses. Roger walks forward to the very edge of the cockpit. He continues to plead his case: "I myself don't even know who I am. I don't have a single solitary memory about myself, but I don't believe anyone took them from me. I most likely erased them of my own free will. I was the one who made that choice. I made it for MYSELF! So I can live in the present AND in the future! Because I must go on believing there is a ME!"

The ground beneath Big O's feet becomes the white grid.

Roger, urgently now: "Angel! I know that I will NEVER lose the you that is now a part of my memories...the you that met me, and the conviction you had in what you felt you needed to do! The you that loved yourself more than anyone else ever could."

Big Venus strides inexoribly forward, towards Roger and Big O. Roger faces it fearlessly, and says to it, "I'll never forget this woman named Angel, who loved herself, yet was filled with such doubt."

R.Dorothy watches silently.

Big Venus closes in.

Roger raises his arms and stretches them wide, as if offering himself to the giant behemoth.

Suddenly we see him on a tv monitor. The camera pulls back, we see a bank of monitors of all different sizes. Roger now says: "You must stop denying your own existance as a human being."

Camera pulls further back. Angel is watching the screens, seated at a control panel before them. Cut to a copy of Metropolis lying near her on the panel. The author is now "Angel Rosewater."

Cut to Angel's profile. We see her nose, cheek, shoulder. A single tear rolls down her cheek as she watches the monitors. A man's hand then touches her shoulder. She turns and looks up as if startled. We see a man in a black suit behind her, resting his hand on the back of her chair, but we don't see his face. Dorothy is there too, wearing her black dress. She is looking at the man, and says, "Roger the Negotiator."

Cut back to the two Bigs. They walk into each other, as if walking into a mirror. Both vanish and a brilliant white light takes their place, filling the screen.

It fades and we see the opening shots from Big O Act 1, "Roger the Negotiator." There is a traffic light changing signals, Roger's car driving through the foggy street, we hear Roger's voice doing the opening monologue.

However, there is one significent change from the sequence. This time we see Angel and Dorothy standing next to each other on the street, watching Roger drive past them.

Cut to Griffon's interior. We hear Roger say, almost hesitatingly for a moment, "My name is...Roger Smith." His voice then regains its confidence as he continues, "I perform a much needed job here, in this city of amnesia."

Everything else seems to be as it was in the beginning Act of the series, and the camera pans up to the cloudy sky.

We Have Come To Terms.

End of episode.
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