Chapter 25 Recap

On the astral plane, Oliver pulls a child's wagon behind him and picks up lost things... including minds. He finds a baby girl and wonders who she is, and then puts the bag holding her onto his wagon and leaves.

Oliver returns home and Jerome Wolf greets him. He asks if he can have the baby, and Oliver tells him to get his own. The Wolf tells Oliver to tell the baby about Holocaust and herpes. Oliver's wife Melanie comes out and shoos the Wolf away, and Oliver shows her the baby. Melanie takes the baby inside while the Wolf howls in the distance.

In the real world at an apartment, sirens sound in the distance.

Oliver makes soup and Melanie wonders what they should call the baby. He says that she told him that her name is Sydney, and Melanie thinks that Sydney looks familiar. The Wolf pounds on the walls, and Oliver warns that he blew down the paper house the last time. This time the house is straw and it should hold. The wind howls as the Wolf blows, and Oliver goes to chat with him.

The Wolf is outside and introduces a girl, Cynthia. He says that Cynthia has needles and suggests that they party. Melanie comes up and tells the Wolf to go, and the Wolf says that Cynthia has given up all hope and that's great. The older woman says that they plan to raise Sydney away from the real world, and ushers Cynthia in for soup while telling the Wolf to go. Cynthia looks at the baby and Melanie says that they should move as the Wolf howls.

Sydney grows up and when she's five, runs across the countryside. She helps Oliver make a wall of stones, and plays with a dollhouse that Cynthia helps her make. Sydney goes with Oliver as he scavenges memories, and they talk about music and umbrellas. Oliver says that the things they scavenge come from the real world when people forget about it. He warns her not to go a certain way, and shows her a massive city that lies beyond. Sydney wonders what makes it real, and Oliver tells her that he'll explain when she's older.

Oliver and Sydney return to their cabin, and Sydney stops to tie her shoe. She sees a fallen tree and goes over to examine it. A dead animal lies in the branches, and the Wolf is looking at it. He says that death is scary, and everyone dies. Sydney explains that Melanie told her that death is a part of life, and Oliver calls Sydney to her.

That night at the cabin, Sydney asks Melanie to tell her a bedtime story. Melanie talks about a girl who had the ability to feel everything the animals felt.

Cynthia shares the feelings of the animals around her, and wonders where they end and she begins. She goes out at night and the Wolf approaches her. The Wolf asks if she misses her parents back in the real world and reminds her that her mother was a lush. He says that Kenny is sorry and wants Cynthia to come back, even though he beat her. When Cynthia tries to go back inside, the Wolf grabs her and offers her some drugs. He strokes her face and asks Cynthia to smile for him, and leads her off into the darkness.

The next day, Sydney eats breakfast with her adopted parents. Cynthia's seat is empty.

As Sydney grows up, Melanie tells her about becoming a woman. Sydney asks what "chlamydia" means, and says that she heard it from the Wolf. Melanie explains that chlamydia is a virus one gets from having sex with someone else who has it.

As Sydney sleeps she dreams of her life with David and whimpers. Melanie hears it, and tells Oliver about it. She warns that Sydney is having dreams of her life outside and whatever brought her to their world. Oliver wonders if it will pass, and doesn't understand why anyone would want to go back. Melanie says that Sydney might feel that there's something unresolved in her life, and feels like they knew her from "before". Oliver says that there's no "before" for them.

Melanie calls Sydney over to tell Oliver her dream. The girl says that she forgot, and Oliver tells her that they can't help her unless she uses her words. Sydney still says nothing, and Oliver tells her that it's okay and she can speak when she's ready.

Sydney sleeps and has more dreams of David promising that none of it will happen. The Legion Davids overwhelm her in the dream, and Sydney whimpers. Outside, the Wolf watches the house and growls.

Oliver and Melanie go to bed, and the Wolf blows the roof off the house and howls. Later, Oliver says that they have to move.

The lean years came, and the family moved from the cabin to the gutter in the city. Sydney stays in their apartment, studying, and she insists that math makes sense. She says that it's time for her to see the world, and she feels like there's something she needs to do. Oliver says that it's about the order that she learns things. Sydney insists that she can take care of herself, and Oliver tells her that they want the felling of safety she has with them to continue. He tells her that they have to learn about love before they learn hate or everything goes to hell.

Later, Sydney walks down the street and finds a box with a thumping noise and an apple next to it. The apple twitches, and Cynthia appears and tells her that it's better to leave it. Sydney wonders where she went, and Cynthia says that she was just there. She introduces her two kids, Sweetie and Blue, and asks how their parents are. Sydney says that they love by the park, and Cynthia figures that they don't remember her. The girl says that they talk about her all the time, and Cynthia points down an alley and invites Sydney to come with them for video games, movies, and cereal. Cynthia says that the Wolf would like to see her, and Sydney sees a fire in the alley. She says that she has to go, and Blue offers her her heart before she goes.

Sydney tells Melanie that she's never going to the real world. Melanie says that the real world needs Sydney and all the bad things can be fixed so they're not bad. She explains that they're helping Sydney be the person that the world needs so she can save it. When Sydney says that she doesn't want to go, Melanie tells her that they're not put on the world to only think of themselves.

Oliver comes in with a live turkey, and Sydney says that they're going to save Cynthia. Oliver starts to object, and Sydney says that it's what good people do and they taught her to be a good person.

Sydney and Oliver go to the alley. Sweetie and Blue are sitting outside a door, and Oliver rolls a bottle to them to distract them while they go inside. They abduct Cynthia and Oliver warns Sydney that the Wolf will come for her. He tells Sydney that if she survives she'll be a grown-up. Sydney wonders why they built the wall when it doesn't do anything, and Oliver explains that they taught her to work hard so she would work hard. They find Melanie and Oliver warns that the Wolf has their scent.

The Wolf smells Oliver on the bottle.

The couple take Cynthia to their apartment and Syd tells her that she deserves good things like love, and they love her. She asks Cynthia to come home, and Cynthia tells them that it doesn't matter because the Wolf is there. The Wolf howls and approaches the apartment, and Oliver steps out and says that the Wolf can't have her. Unimpressed, the Wolf says that he's a wild animal and Oliver can't beat him, and Oliver warns him that he has a few tricks. He swirls his cape and the Wolf finds himself in a dark void with Cynthia. Oliver steps out and says that there's only one way it can end with a rap battle.

The lights come up to reveal a club, and Oliver starts rapping. The Wolf raps back, and starts to defeat Oliver. Oliver says that he has friends while the Wolf has no one, and the audience cheers Oliver. As the Wolf breaks into tears, Cynthia tells Oliver to stop. She thanks Oliver for everything but says that she and the Wolf belong together, and leads him off.

Oliver reappears on the street, as Sydney and Melanie look on. Sydney is shocked that Cynthia went with the Wolf, and Melanie says that they had to try and save her so that Sydney would know the truth. Oliver claps his hands and Melanie's modern clothing appears on her. She runs forward and hugs Oliver, who says that Sydney is ready. Sydney wonders what he means, and Oliver touches her face and she becomes Syd. Syd remembers what happened, and realizes that she has to go back. Melanie tells her that it's not "us or them", but us and them.

Syd says that they need them with her, and Melanie says that they did her part and she should remember what they taught her. Syd closes her eyes and wakes up on the airship in the hallway near Kerry and the Acolytes.

Going to the bridge, Syd sees Switch's time doorway fluctuating in the air but is unable to pass through it. Cary is tending to Kerry's wounds, and Cary thinks that they lost. Kerry wonders if they're going to vanish when David changes things in the past, and Cary admits that he doesn't know. Syd arrives and says that she can fix it because the time doorway is still open, but she needs to get in. Cary says that he'll make more bracelets like the one he made for David.

The doorway continues fluctuating, and Cary finally explains that the Time Eaters are back. He finishes three bracelets and says that they're piggybacking on Switch's power. They'll find her and David by following her signal. Kerry tells Cary that Syd needs him but she can't help the way she is. Cary tells Syd that they need a minute, then goes over to a wheelchair and calls Kerry over. He insists that it's the only way, and tells her to come home. The two of them merge into Cary, who collapses gasping into the wheelchair as he takes on Kerry's injuries.

Time Eats start appearing around them, and Syd tells Cary that it's time to go. Kerry emerges from Cary and tells Syd to go through the doorway, and then wheels the wheelchair to the door. She shoves Cary through, and then goes through as the Time Eaters close in.

In the hallway, Kerry checks on Cary and tells Syd that they're going to win.

Written by Gadfly on Jul 30, 2019

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