NCIS season 9 continues with episode 21, "Rekindled." It begins with firemen doing their jobs when one finds a dead body and another finds classified files.
About That Boy From Baltimore...
The warehouse is owned by United Equinox Electronics, and they use it to store tax records and corporate documents. Tony loves his new boots, but Gibbs quickly turns the talk back to the case. At the scene, Tony runs into Jason King, and there's obviously some tension there. He leads Tony and Gibbs to the body, where Ducky tells them it was unlikely he started the fire. Jason did do some preliminary work and found an empty drawer, lock broken off. McGee finds a possible ID for the body: Carter Plimpton, a civilian employee who was the last to swipe in.
Tony says he's surprised Jason recognized him; they only met once when Jason was nine. Gibbs hangs up a picture of the Phantom 8Â—Carter was one of them. He's much more than "a cubical nerd." Ducky discovers that Carter's skin was double-burned, signs that he was tortured. It looks like the killer may have gotten the information he wanted. Jack Murdoch tells McGee and Ziva that Carter handled product testing and claims to not know what Watcher Fleet is. Abby has discovered evidence of a thermite reaction, which can't be stopped. Their killer added something to slow the reaction, and an arsonist or pyromaniac would never do that. Their killer is controlling the fire.
Tony tries to talk to Jason, but he's not welcome to a conversation about anything but the case. As Tony suspects, he hasn't forgiven him about his sister. McGee tells Gibbs he hacked into the Naval Intelligence Database and found out Watcher Fleet worked on a project, Aquamarine, and there was a file box in the warehouse. The project was initiated four years ago, when Carter was in Watcher Fleet.
Watcher Fleet Returns to NCIS
Carter left the Fleet in '08 to take the Equinox job. They're still waiting for confirmation Aquamarine even exists. They may have a lead in Billy Wayne, in prison for life for setting fires using thermite. He tells them that their guy could be sending a message or testing it. He has mentioned his use of thermite to Janice, who's writing a book about him. Abby has been testing thermite and asks Jason what got him into fire. He explains that he was in a fire and they never caught the guy, which gets him an Abby hug. There's more testing to be done, and he's going to help.
An alert comes in about another fire, this one on a ship. Their guy burned tarps on an empty cargo vessel, and once again, there are signs of thermite. When Jason and Tony head down into the ship, they come across a trap when Jason opens up a junction box. He gets them out of the room in time, closing the door behind them, and tells Tony they're even.
Someone set a thermite charge in the junction box; the tarp fire was a distraction. There was a weakness in the wiring, and it leads back to United Equinox. Jack just says there are flaws in everything depending on conditions, and only in nearly impossible circumstances could there be serious problems. He claims they're following the letter of the law, but someone decided to demonstrate that problem after killing Carter. Gibbs shows him the Phantom 8 photo and tells him they think Aquamarine's about their bad wiring. Jack says they only sold the wiring to civilians
McGee and Ziva show Tony the newspaper clipping they found of Tony rescuing Jason. He was in Baltimore for the Final Four and out for a walk when he saw smoke. He got Jason out, but the path was blocked to his 4-year-old sister. Gibbs tells him, "You helped. Others didn't," before sending them to get "Janice," whose real name is Mary Gardocki. She's the leading sales representation at a chemical company. He shows her the Phantom 8 photo, and she says she's surprised they really exist. She's only heard of them. The best salesmen are liars, but she claims not to be lying. He removes her scarf to reveal her burned neck. She admits she's been running tests with thermite but claims to not have killed anyone.
Mary's alibi that she was in the hospital checks out. Just as Tony suggests Abby may have something, she calls Gibbs down. Their guy has been mixing thermite with fire retardant. It makes for a controlled burn. The brand that their guy uses has to be bought directly from the manufacturer. Abby's computer dings with Bruce Johnson. He's the fire department site inspector, and he actually thinks he can get away when he sees NCIS pulling up. He wants a deal and says someone hired him. Gibbs tells him to turn off his car, and when he does, it starts a fire. Tony tops Jason from trying to get to him.
Ziva finds the missing file from the warehouse. It's a list of every warship that contains the faulty wiring. Jack lied to them. The current Watcher Fleet has been working to fix that problem. Two-thirds of the ships are still at risk. Everyone's working late, and until they know who's behind it, they can hire someone else. How did this person find out about Aquamarine?
Gibbs sends Tony to talk to Jason, who thinks he just gave up again and could've saved Bruce. Tony tells him there was nothing they could've doneÂ—either time. He learned that night that you can't save them all. He chose Jason. Tony says he decided to become a cop because of a kid he almost lost in Baltimore. Gibbs wonders if the microchips contained information about the wiring. They're not all accounted for. On U.S.S. Brewer, the Machine Room explodes.
What did you think of NCIS season 9 episode 21 "Rekindled"?
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Â© Meredith Jacobs 2012