Synopsis of Ground State

Written by Brandee Mode

In 1985, A couple leaves their daughter Gwen at an academy because they don't know what else to do with her. A boy hands Gwen a toy and when she touches him, he is thrown back by a strong electrical shock. Back in the present, Fred, Gunn and Angel pack up Cordelia's belongings because they can no longer afford to pay her rent. Phantom Dennis is unhappy about it. Angel suggests Lorne could help them but Fred explains he hasn't been able to help so far. It is also obvious that she is bitter toward Connor.

Angel visits Wesley and tells him that he considers things to be OK with them but Wesley doesn't respond. Wesley has his own *gang* now and he shares with Angel the results of his search for Cordelia. Angel needs to go see a demon called Dinza. Only the dead can enter her presence, she is like a keeper of lost things and might be able to help. Angel goes to see Dinza. She moves around the room as they speak. She looks like she has a big spider web hanging from her face like a veil and she has bat-like wings. Dinza tells Angel that Cordelia is far away and he needs to find the Axis Of Pythia, it can cross over between dimensions and find what he is looking for.

All grown up now, Gwen has been hired by a man named Elliott to steal the Axis Of Pythia for his private collection. They argue about the price he is going to pay her. Elliott thinks she is not acting like a professional. Back at the hotel, Fred tries to give a presentation on what she has learned about the Axis of Pythia but her illustrations are not very good compared to the excellent drawings that Angel made.

[Remember they showed us how well he could draw when he was Angelus during season 2 of BtVS? I had forgotten all about it.]

Fred says it is in an auction house, then tries to explain all the security measures they will have to get past in order to steal it; including surveillance cameras, laser sensors and armed guards among other things. Gunn suggests that since it is an auction house, why don't they try to buy it. At the same time, Angel and Fred tell him that it's worth 33 million dollars. Gunn chokes on his coffee when he hears the number. Fred heads off to start working on a plan. As Angel is telling Gunn the things they will need to steal it, we see that Gwen is already at the auction house preparing to enter.

Wesley and Lilah start to take off each other's clothes. She says she knows Wesley lied about caring where Angel was. Wesley says it was necessary to raise Angel. Lilah knows that Angel ordered Connor to leave the hotel and she "sees possibilities" in that. Lilah thinks she could become Connor's friend, or his lover "if he's into that" type of thing.

Angel, Fred and Gunn break into the lower level of the auction house, just after Gwen has broken in through the roof. Gwen knows they are there. Fred attempts to disable the security system. Gunn hits a guard and knocks him unconscious. Angel gets to the vault but a large gate lowers to prevent his entrance. There are green laser beams criss-crossing the room. Fred discovers a malfunction in the electrical system. Gunn moves the guard to a side room and discovers other guards that are unconscious. Gwen lowers herself from an opening in the ceiling and uses her electrical power to manipulate the green beams; they all bend away from her. Angel tries to talk her out of taking the Axis. Gunn arrives and helps Angel raise the gate. Gunn squeezes under it and reaches for Gwen as she climbs back up the rope to the ceiling. She shocks him and Gunn falls to the floor, dead. The look on Gwen's face tells us she did not mean to kill him. Fred arrives and runs to Gunn, but Gwen kicks her out of the way. Gwen starts Gunn's heart by shocking him again. Gwen escapes while Angel and Fred tend to Gunn.

Lilah watches as Connor joins a group of homeless people to sleep on the ground. Angel appears next to her and tells her that he wants information about who hired Gwen to steal the Axis. Lilah starts to tell him no, but he reminds her that if she does, he will forget she is "within 50 yards" of his son. And then he whispers that it is "just this once". As he walks away, he comments that he can smell her and Wesley "all over each other". Back at the hotel, Fred and Gunn have returned from the hospital. Gunn is resting on the bed. Fred is cleaning but ends up freaking out about the fact that Gunn died. Gunn comforts her.

Gwen prepares to enter an elevator but Angel arrives and they begin fighting. Gwen does not understand why he is not hurt. They end up inside the elevator and she shocks him with both hands and it causes his heart to start beating. For some reason I have yet to understand, once Angel realizes his heart is beating, he immediately kisses her. They snap out of it and Gwen realizes that his heart started beating but she is surprised that it usually doesn't. Angel looks surprised and says Cordelia's name. Elliot and some henchmen have arrived. Elliot plans to kill them because Gwen was not discreet. Elliott explains he had the elevator modified with Lucite to prevent her from reaching a live current. The elevator door closes and poisoned gas begins entering through the ceiling. Gwen quickly becomes affected, but since Angel doesn't breathe, he remains standing. After multiple attempts, Angel punches through the Lucite to the control panel and reaches for Gwen's hand. She sends electricity through Angel to electrocute the control panel and the elevator door opens. Elliot and his men are still outside. Angel fights them, but has to stop Gwen from killing Elliot. Gwen lets Angel have the Axis.

At the hotel, Angel emerges from a room after using the Axis. He tells Fred and Gunn that there was light around Cordelia that seemed to be made of "pure joy and warmth." Gunn wonders if Cordelia will ever visit them and Angel assumes she won't be able to. Angel says it's a little easier knowing that Cordelia is doing good things. He comments that the whole time he was trapped under the ocean, he kept thinking he had to get back to Cordelia but now he realizes that "she already is home, where she belongs." The episode ends with a brief scene of Cordelia in the *higher realm* with bright light around her. She complains that she wants to leave:

CORDELIA: "What are you, deficient? Get me out of here!"

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