Six Months Later
Kid Flash, Vibe, and Joe pursue Peek A Boo through the streets as Iris coordinates them from S.T.A.R. Labs. She teleports ahead of them heading out of the city, and Iris works out Peek A Boo's pattern. Vibe gets there first and intercepts her, trapping her with his powers long enough or Kid Flash to grab her. She prepares to shoot them, but Joe and his men arrive and taser her unconscious.
Back at SAR Labs, Iris points out that it wasn't their fins moment. She notes that one out of every three metas that they've fought has escaped, and says that they have to work harder because there's no one else to protect the city. Iris tells wally to go train, and joe quickly leaves. She asks Cisco to share her thinking, and Cisco says that it'd be better if they weren't one man down.
That night at the West house, Cecile discusses moving in with Joe and Iris. Cecile realizes that Iris wants some time alone with Joe and goes to make coffee. Joe tells her that the CCPD wants to hire someone to replace Barry, and Iris agrees since she figures Barry isn't coming back from the Speed force. Her father says that he's been giving her time to deal with what happened, but iris tells him that she's going to be strong. Joe wonders if they should hold a funeral for Barry, but Iris points out that there's nothing to bury. Once she leaves, Cecile comes back out.
Iris goes back to the apartment and the building shakes as someone runs by. She calls Wally and Cisco and says that they're up. Soon, Vibe, Kid Flash, and Joe arrive as an armored figure lands on the street ahead of them. Samurai demands the real Flash, not Kid Flash, or the city falls. Vibe wonders what he's going to do against them, and Samurai slams his sword into the pavement, unleashing an energy blast. He gives them one day to bring him Flash or Central City dies.
Back at S.T.A.R. Labs, the team watches a broadcast about Samurai's threat, and they figure he has to fight Flash. Cisco says that they have to bring Barry back or people will die, and says that he's been working on a way to do so safely. He just needs a couple more things. Iris wonders if the Speed Force will take Wally in Barry's place or rip apart the city, and Cisco wonders why she isn't in on it. She tells them that Barry is gone and says that they have to come up with a plan to defeat Samurai. The others agree and Cisco goes to get some coffee.
Cisco goes to the bar where Caitlin is working as a bartender. She says that it's just her, and doesn't discuss how she went back to normal. Cisco says that they could really use her, and needs her help to get Barry out. A man, Norvok, comes over and asks Caitlin if is everything great. She tells him that it is, and Cisco irritably tells the man to go. Once he walks away, Cisco says that he can't save Barry without her and they need her to save Barry, and Caitlin agrees.
The next day, Iris arrives at STAR Lab and discovers that no one is there. She traces the van signal and learns where they are: at the old Ferris Airfields.
Cisco calls Wally and Joe there and tells them that they're bringing Barry back. He tells them to look to him like Barry said, and Caitlin joins them. Caitlin hopes that one day Joe can forgive her for what she did to him and Cecile, and Joe hugs her. Cisco unveils the Speed Force bazooka and explains that it will track Barry's genetic structure. They activate the bazooka and get a lock on something, and cisco fires the beam. The system fails and Barry doesn't appear, just as Iris arrives.
In Ivy City, a Speed Force gap appears and a speedster runs out of it and streaks out of the city. A truck almost crashes, and a bearded and naked Barry stops it... and then collapses
Back at S.T.A.R. Labs, Iris complains that the team went behind her back. When Caitlin says that they were close, Iris asks where she's been for the last six months. Cisco angrily wonders if she wants him back, just as Cecile calls Joe and tells him that the state police found Barry and one of them recognized Barry. The team goes to the police station and finds Barry, who is scrawling symbols on the wall. He sees them and smiles, and says that Nora shouldn't be there. Iris tells him that he's home, and Barry says that he didn't kill them and rambles about a judge and the stars. Barry talks about the stars melting and Nora shouldn't be there, and Caitlin confirms that it's neurological.
Barry screams in pain and collapse to the floor, and then says that he and Henry are both okay. He tells Oliver that he's not like him, and Caitlin injects him with a sedative. Back at S.T.A.R. Labs, Caitlin confirms that Barry's neurotransmitters are working five times faster than normal. Cisco says that Barry is schizophastic, and Cisco suggests that they can translate it. Caitlin's other suggestion is that Barry may have been in the Speed Force for 10,000 years, and the isolation may have caused dementia. She suggests that they wake him up and find out.
Caitlin and Cisco wake Barry up, and Cisco tells him that he made him a new suit. Barry continues talking about the stars and continues rambling. He starts sketching on a window, and Caitlin admits that she doesn't know what is causing Barry's condition. Iris asks the others to leave, and then tries to get through to Barry. She says that she keep moving forward because if she stopped then she'd remember that Barry wasn't there. Iris tells Barry that she thought if he came back, it would be like losing him all over again. Barry continues writing, and Iris begs him to come back to her. She hugs him, and Barry vibrates and then speeds through the lab. Caitlin finally freezes him with Captain Cold's gun, and they get him into a containment cell. Samurai appears on the monitors, and Wally figures that they should give him what he wants.
Samurai is walking down the streets when Flash attacks him. They fight and Samurai soon realizes that he's not fighting the real Flash. He impales Wall through the leg with one sword and warns that if he doesn't get the real Flash by nightfall, the city will come down.
Back at the lab, Caitlin tends to Wally's injury. She warns that it will take four to five hours to recover, and Joe assures Wally that he's done everything that he can do. Meanwhile, Cisco tries to translate Barry's writing, and says that he's missed having Caitlin around. When she says that it's all Greek to her, Cisco gets an idea about the symbols each being an alphabetic. Cisco cracks the code and determines that it says, "This house is bitchin'." Cisco realizes that he's on the wrong track.
Later, Cisco sits alone in his workshop. He's looking at Barry's new suit under a cloth. Caitlin comes in and Cisco says that he believed Barry was trying to communicate with them. He tried to bring Barry back because he missed his friend, not to save the city.
Joe looks at Barry in the containment cell, and then shaves him. He goes out and finds Iris there, and Iris admits that Barry is lost. Her father says that she has to believe things will get better, and Iris tells him that she doesn't know how anymore. Joe says that he went to church on Cecile's suggestion, and learned that strength means nothing without faith. He assures Iris that she has strength and just needs a little faith. Cisco calls and says that Samurai's 24 hours are up. Iris goes to the cell and tells Barry to come get her.
Joe and the police confront Samurai in the street, and they prepare to fight. Iris walks up and tells Samurai to take her because he'll come for her. When Samurai wonders how she knows it, she says that she believes. The villain grabs her and flies off.
Joe returns to S.T.A.R. Labs and tells the others what happened. He goes to Barry's cell and tells him what happened, and begs him to help or Iris will die. Barry hesitates and his eyes flicker with Speed Force, and then he runs out of the cell. Joe tells the others that Barry left, and they discover that he took his suit with him.
Flash speeds through the city faster than faster than anyone ever has, and Iris sees him coming from outside the city. They arrive at a windmill field and Samurai blasts them down. Flash evades the falling windmills, runs up one pole, and leaps at Samurai. The hero grabs Iris, smashes Samurai and leaps away, getting clear in less than a second. He sets Iris down and goes to Samurai, removing his mask and discovers that it's a robot. The robot Samurai welcomes Flash home. Barry removes his mask and turns to Iris, who says that he came back to her. He tells her that he always will and they kiss.
Back at S.T.A.R. Labs, Caitlin confirms that Barry is in perfect health. Barry says that he's been reborn, and Wally tells him that he may be the fastest speedster ever. Caitlin suggests that he was soaking up the Speed Force's energy, and they assure him that they have everything under control. Cisco wonders who created Samurai, and asks if "The house is bitchin'" means anything to Barry. He doesn't recognize it, and admits that he didn't know that Iris was in trouble. Iris thanks Cisco for believing when she couldn't, and they leave. Cisco asks Caitlin if he'll see her the next day, and Caitlin says that he will.
Caitlin goes back to the bar and tells Norvok to tell Amunet that she's out. When she turns to go, Norvok grabs her and says that she doesn't tell him what to do. She transforms into Killer Frost and freezes Norvok's brain with a touch. She walks out and figures that it's time to have some fun, and then moans in pain. Killer Frost switches back to Caitlin, and realizes that it's happened again.
Barry and Iris go back to their apartment, and she says that she couldn't even look at the photo of the two of them. He assures her that he's not going anywhere again, and he's proud of her for keeping everyone together. Barry suggests that his disappearance may have been a blessing, because the pain of his past is all washed away. Now all he sees is their future together, and they kiss. Sirens sound in the distance, and Barry speeds off to deal with the emergency.
A woman, the Mechanic, tells her employer that Samurai served its purpose. She tells her superior that Flash is back, and the man--the Thinker--tells her that he's thinking about their next step.
Written by Gadfly on Oct 11, 2017