Ten Thirteen
The Leftovers | Season 2 | Episode 9

Ten Thirteen

TV-MA | 55 MIN

Written by Damon Lindelof & Monica Beletsky

Directed by Keith Gordon

Meg Abbott does a line of coke in an upscale restaurant bathroom before returning to lunch with her mother. It's October the 13th -- the day before the Sudden Departure. Meg's mother pushes for information about Meg's wedding and offers to pay for it, but Meg refuses to give. Her mother then insists she has something to tell Meg, but Meg begs to go to the bathroom first. She does another bump of coke, but when she returns to the table, she sees her mother on the floor, a member of the wait staff doing chest compressions in an attempt to revive her.

Two years after the Departure, Meg and her fiancé Darren take a trip to Miracle National Park. Meg heads to Isaac's house, having heard that he's "the real deal" and can help her. Isaac gives her a paste to chew and spit back into his hands, which is rubs together. Meg explains that she wants to know what her mother was going to tell her before she died, but Isaac warns her that her mother's final words may not live up to Meg's expectations. "No matter what I say to you, you're going to be disappointed because it's not going to fix what's broke inside," he says. Meg calls "bullshit" until Isaac reveals that he knows her mother sent back her salad that day because it had walnuts. A few moments later, Meg leaves the house and breezily tells Darren Isaac wasn't authentic after all.

Later, Meg sits on a park bench alone and cries. Evie Murphy approaches and offers her a baby carrot, because "you can't cry while you eat them, it's impossible." Evie offers to tell her a joke, but she doesn't know any. Instead, Meg offers a knock-knock joke, and the two women share a smile and introduce themselves. Before leaving, Evie tells Meg, "I'm sorry that you didn't find what you were looking for here. No one ever does."

In present day Mapleton, Meg and other members of the Guilty Remnant stand in the road and stop a school bus. After a member wrenches open the door, Meg climbs aboard with grenade. She pulls the pin and exits, while a member uses a crowbar to trap the children inside. Meg smiles as she walks away, but the bus does not blow up.

Meg then heads to an empty house where she meets with three other female G.R. members who confront her about the bus incident. Meg insists they talk instead of using notepads, and one of the women chastises Meg for targeting children, even though no one was hurt. Meg is told that violence is weakness, but she doesn't agree. People are forgetting, and she wants to step up the group's work as a result. "Why do I have to just stand there when I can put my cigarette out in their f**king eye?" Meg promises to be at the upcoming Heroes Day celebration, but none of the women believe her. They remind her that she didn't take care of their last problem, Tom Garvey, and now he's pulling away G.R. members by promising to hug their pain away.

Meg finds Tom speaking at a local VFW. He finishes his spiel and offers hugs to the room, and Meg gets in line. As they embrace, she whispers in his ear, "I can do this for real." Later that night, Laurie finds Tom still at the VFW, and confronts him about missing a speaking engagement and therefore losing out on much-needed donations. Tom accuses Laurie of pimping him out so that she doesn't have to feel about abandoning her "whole f**cking family." She slaps him and immediately apologizes; Tom storms out without a word.
The next morning, a drunk Tom heads to the G.R. chapter where he was caught and confronts the young woman who blew the whistle on him. He demands to know where Meg is, and a short while later, Meg arrives and asks him what he wants. Tom begs to be a part of the G.R., but Meg insists what he really wants is a family. "If I wanted a f**king family," he says, "I'd move to Texas." he says. Tom reveals that his father and sister now live there, spinning the wheels in Meg's head.

That night, Meg and Tom drive to Texas. She tells Tom that what she's going to do when they get there is "pretty f**king amazing" but gives no other details. Tom asks why Meg had sex with him; he understands that the threat of setting him on fire was to send a message to his mother, but he doesn't understand the sex. Instead of answering, Meg pulls into a honkytonk and asks if Tom would like to dance.

Tom and Meg take shots of whisky at the bar, and have a surprisingly normal conversation about their families -- both he and Meg were adopted by stepfathers. Tom asks what's happening between them, but Meg kisses him and pulls him onto the dancefloor instead. After a few moments, Meg tells him, "I wanted to get you pregnant, that's why I f**ked you, Tom." She stops dancing and leaves the bar. Tom follows her out.

In the morning, Meg and Tom roll up to a ranch owned by the Guilty Remnant. Once on the property, a man tells Meg they had a trespasser -- a young man who likely wandered off a nearby bike trail. They found him outside of the barn and believe he saw what was inside, despite his insistence he saw nothing. The man suggests they keep him until after tomorrow, when "it won't matter anymore," but Meg tells the man to stone him instead.

Later, Meg drives alone to the encampment outside of Miracle and observes the bridge leading into the park. Her reverie is broken when she hears a familiar voice calling her name. It's Matt Jamison, and he's stunned see Meg out of white and talking. She sits and chats with him for a little while, telling him that it was hard to get away from the Guilty Remnant, but she came to Jarden because their tactics don't work there. Matt listens to her skeptically, then admits that he doesn't think she's being honest with him. Meg leans in and asks him what he and all the others are waiting for and why they aren't doing anything to get into the place they believe will bring then salvation. "You want me to tell you?" she asks. "You're waiting for me."

At the ranch, Tom waits until the others are asleep and then sneaks out to the barn. Inside, he finds a silver airstream trailer with its door locked from the inside. He wrenches it open with a nearby axe. Evie Murphy stands in the doorway, unharmed. When Tom asks who she is, she writes, "IT DOESN'T MATTER" before slamming the door in his face.