A man is sleeping
in a car - he is FBI agent Stebben, on a stakeout. Another agent,
Leads, wakes him up. The front door of the house they are watching
is wide open and the lights are out. They go to check it out and
find bloody footprints in the front hall of the house. Over the door
an eye is painted. The officers find multiple bloody dead bodies on
cots in a bedroom. Leads follows the footsteps further, and Stebben
hears him discharge his gun. Following to assist, Stebben finds
Leads dead of a wound to the head. The agent turns and behind him is
a man with a axe. The man has a third eye in the middle of his
forehead. The man brings the blade down fast into the agent's head.
At his home in
Falls Church Virginia, Agent Doggett gets a call from Scully. An FBI
agent, sent to surveil a religious occult in Pittsburgh, is dead but
Scully can't go due to something unexpected - she doesn't tell
Doggett she is at the emergency room seeing a doctor. Doggett
arrives at the crime scene with Skinner. Skinner briefs Doggett that
they had a tip that the cult - the Avagon Template was dealing
drugs. In the officer's car they find James Leads body - sitting
dead as if he never left. The patrol cop found him in the car, with
the doors locked from inside. Doggett thinks the murder happened
someplace else, however Skinner says that the blood splatter on the
seat says that it did. Doggett tells him its too narrow, there's no
room to swing a weapon. Leads' gun is still holstered and keys are
in the ignition. Doggett wonders whether Leeds feel asleep?
This is damn weird.
Skinner: It gets weirder
Inside the house
they look at the other bodies, all dead of a single wound in the
forehead, but the leader of the cult, Anthony Tipet, is missing.
Skinner tells Doggett that Tipet was a convicted murderer who
claimed to have found God. Doggett tells Skinner that he doesn't
care how devoted the Cult was, he knew that they wouldn't just lie
there and let their leader bash their brains in. There are insignias
of the eye around the house. The other agent, Stebben, is missing.
Doggett happens to know that Stebben is from Pittsburgh but keeps a
condo in DC that belonged to his parents. They go to the condo where
they find Stebben, dead of a wound to the fore head.
Skinner watch a videotape of Tipet, a convicted criminal who became
a cult leader. Tipet believes that bodies are clay shells made by
God to hold the twin aspects of the Holy Spirit - light and dark.
Tibet tells his followers that if they have the courage to see into
darkness, they see into god, free and clear of the clay that binds
them. Tipet had served 12 years after the bludgeoning death of his
wife. After his release he became a minister preaching of hybrid of
evangelical and eastern religions. He claimed a higher level of
being could be reached by the via negativa, the path of darkness, a
plane closer to God. Once reached it would let the spirit travel
unhindered. Tipet believed that hallucinogens would lead him to that
plane, specifically compounds of the bark of an African tree.
However, Nothing in FBI research suggests that Tipet was ready to
kill his followers. There were no traces of drugs in the blood of
any of the victims.
Skinner and Doggett
brief Kersh that there were no fingerprints and doors of the car,
the cult house and Stedman's condo were all locked from inside.
Skinner: Unless Tipet took the drug and succeeded. Unless his
consciousness was there but his body was somewhere else.
Kersh: The X-File explanation. I take it this theory comes
from Agent Scully.
Doggett: Agent Scully has yet to reach any conclusion, Sir.
that he is not hearing conclusions, and he puts Doggett on the spot
to come up with answers. After leaving Kersh's office, Doggett tells
Skinner that if he's working on the case, he'd appreciate a head's
up before Skinner tells Kersh any more science fiction stories.
Skinner tells him he doesn't have any other explanation.
In a rundown area
of Pittsburgh that night, Tipet is stopped by a homeless man asking
for change. Tipet tells him he doesn't have any but the man says
that he had heard a jingle in his pocket. Tipet grabs him by the
collar and pushes him against a payphone and tells him "You
don't wanna know me". He phones Andre. Andre listens as Tipet
leaves a message on the answering machine. Tipet claims that Andre
is responsible for the deaths. Andre is in a lab with cages of rats
and many concoctions around him - he was making drugs. Andre picks
up a raiser blade and presses it into his forehead.
the coroner's report - all the victims were killed with an axe
blade, six to eight inches long, in a single blow to the forehead.
Readings required for Tipet's followers include reference to a
ceremonial axe, used thousands of years ago to cleave the skulls of
unbelievers, but it is on display in a museum in Calcutta, India.
Doggett tells Skinner that he's a good investigator, but he knows as
well as he does he's not the one who should be investigating the
case. Skinner tells him that Scully had told him that she is taking
some "personal time." Doggett tells him that 22 people are
dead and questions her taking some 'personal time'. Doggett picks up
the phone to call her, but Skinner grabs his hand and tells him that
he's not listening to what he's telling him. He says to do his best
In Pittsburgh, the
homeless man is sleeping on the street. He sees Tipet again, with a
third eye in his forehead. The pavement turns to quicksand, as Tipet
brings down the ceremonial axe.
Skinner goes to
Doggett's house to tell him about the similar death in Pittsburgh,
with Tipet seen making a pay phone call nearby. Skinner speculates
that maybe the drug Tipet was promoting finally allowed him to reach
another plain of reality. Doggett asks that if Tipet is looking for
god, why is he killing people? He says that just because he's
assigned to The X-Files, Skinner expects him to think like Mulder
& Scully would, but he's got the wrong guy. Unlike them, he
needs facts - not wild ideas. Skinner tells him that Tipet's phone
call was traced to Andre Bormanis, a convicted drug dealer.
Skinner and Doggett
go to see him and find that Andre has cut marks in his forehead. His
home includes a science lab with caged rats and Andre claims to be a
doctor. Andre says hallucinogens were Tipet's route into other
realms. Nobody took the trips but Tipet, because only he was strong
enough. Andre hopes that the cut on his forehead is protection. The
agents take Andre in for questioning, leaving him in a jail cell in
spite of his protests that he needs the drugs he was working on.
In a dream
sequence, Doggett sees bloody footprints in the jail hallway and
sees Tipet floating, with a third eye in his forehead. Doggett
realizes that the footprints are his own. He sees Scully's head
dripping blood. Skinner wakes him up - Doggett was sitting on a
bench in the hall, dozing. Scully is on the phone for Doggett. She
appreciates his discretion, even though he still doesn't know what
is going on. Scully has asked Skinner to contact some friends of
Mulder's and she encourages Doggett to get some rest, because she
has heard that has been working around the clock on this case.
Skinner and Doggett realize that the drugs Andre was cooking up were
to keep him from going to sleep. In the cell, Andre wakes up. Tipet
is there. A plague of rats enters Andre's cell. When Doggett and
Skinner run up to the cell, Andre is on the floor, dead.
Doggett finds the
Lone Gunmen in the X-Files office. They dont realise that he's there
at first as Frohike goes through The X-Files telling Byers that
Mulder wouldn't mind as they had practically helped him solve half
of those cases. Langly meanwhile is spinning around in Mulder's
chair aiming a rubber band at the ceiling. Doggett has heard of them
from reading the files. They show him a slide show, depicting the
eye image seen at Tipet's house - is it an eastern symbol
representing opening of the soul. Doggett says that placement of the
wounds on Tipet's victims suggests that he has opened his eye but he
is trying to keep his victims from opening theirs. The Gunmen relate
CIA efforts to create psychic assassins and speculate that Tipet has
apparently accomplished that. The Gunmen suggest that Tiper has
reached a condition of higher consciousness, using his mind as a
weapon against his victims - he makes his victims think that they're
being hit by an axe through a series of nighmares. Doggett doesn't
believe it, but thinks Tipet may, and concludes that Tipet will need
more drugs so that he can keep killing. When Doggett leaves, Frohike
quips that he's not bad for a beginner.
Doggett and Skinner
go to Andre's lab. Tipet is there, hiding. Tipet apologizes for what
is about to happen. He says that Doggett understands and knows what
will happen unless he stops it. He slams his forehead into a
laboratory saw. They rush him to the hospital, where Doggett happens
to see that Scully was admitted for acute abdominal pain. She is in
a hospital room, but he walks by her room without letting her know.
Doggett reports to
Skinner and Kersh about Tipet's beliefs. He tells them that Tibet
believed that the drugs took him inside the subconscious minds of
anyone he knew, making the most horrific, irrational dream imagery
of their nightmares come true. That's why he tried to kill himself -
to make it stop. Kersh pats a confused Doggett on the back and
commends him on an excellent job, but Doggett feels that the case
isn't over yet. There is no murder weapon and no forensic evidence
and no way to know how Tipet killed his victims. Kersh is firm that
the case is over and tells Doggett that he doesn't need every 'i'
dotted or 't' crossed to know that they got the killer.
Doggett leaves a
message on Scully's answering machine that they caught the guy but
that the case doesn't add up. There is part of him that asks what if
this guy is right? What if he would have let him die? Doggett needs
some sleep. He concludes his message, saying that when Scully gets
the message, she should give him a call, if she feels up to it. As
Doggett goes upstairs to bed, viewers see a man with an axe watching
In the morning,
Doggett awakes and dresses for work, but in a mirror sees himself
with a third eye in his forehead. When he blinks, the image in the
mirror also blinks. When cameras show him in reality, the third eye
is not there. At FBI HQ, Doggett visit's Skinner's office. Doggett
is disoriented. He's not sure he is awake. Last night he dreamed
that Tipet was inside his house, holding an axe. The dead FBI agents
may have experienced the same thing - they thought that the dream
was real, but it resulted in their death. A terrified Doggett
deduces that Tipet knew Doggett now and could enter his dreams in
spite of being in a coma. Skinner thinks Doggett is just tired and
sends him home to rest. It becomes clear that it is a dream
sequence. The ends of the hallways retreat and Tipet approaches
Doggett. "She" is going to die, Tipet says, but it is
Doggett who is going to kill her. Doggett finds himself in Scully's
apartment, holding the axe. He enters Scully's bedroom where she is
sleeping, raises the axe as if to strike her, then lowers it and
prepares to slam it into his own forehead.....and Scully wakes him
She is at his home
and his door was unlocked. He tells her that she saved his life. She
tells him that Tipet is dead, having never regained consciousness.
Scully is feeling OK.
Tipet thought he’d find God by looking in the darkness inside
Scully: You don’t think he succeeded.
Dogett: [shaking head] In my dreams I saw…I saw terrible,
violent images. Scared the livin’ daylights out of me. These
things are a part of me, I can’t deny that, but, maybe…maybe
they didn’t come from me.
Scully: Then where’d they come from? It was a bad dream,
Agent Doggett, but that’s all it was.