Michael insists to Sun that he does not work for Ben - he's trying to make up for what he did. Desmond screams for him suddenly - the boat is loaded with C-4.

Kate and Sayid realize from tracks that they're surrounded. Richard and the Others disarm them. Why are they back in grubby gear? And I wonder if Richard remembers Kate from 1977 when she brought him a wounded Ben?

Ben hands Locke his telescoping baton, and gives him instructions on how to find the elevator in the Orchid by the anthuriums. As all our groups march toward their respective destinies, Ben surrenders himself to Keamy at the Orchid (but only b/c he knows his people are coming).

Sawyer and Jack find Hurley, and then find Locke at the Orchid, trying to find the elevator. Jack has no intention of having a debate with Locke - he just wants to get his people on the helicopter. One problem - Hurley infomrs him the Rambo guys are on their way to the helicopter with Ben, who surrendered himself to them. So... Jack and Locke have time for another showdown:

  • Please reconsider leaving the island and stay
  • "You threw a knife into the back of an unarmed woman."
  • "Well, you put a gun to my head and pulled the trigger. Let bygones be bygones."
  • You're not supposed to leave.
  • Oh, right, crashing here was our destiny.
  • You know you're here for a reason, and if you leave, that knowledge will eat you alive from the inside-out.
  • Locke is the one who tells Jack they will have to lie about everything that happened since Day One. Only way to protect it.
  • "It's an island - no one needs to protect it.
  • It's not an island, it's a place where miracles happen. If you can't believe that, just see what I'm about to do."
  • There's no such thing as miracles.
  • We'll just have to see which one of us is right.

It could be that they both are. Miracles, one might argue, are nothing but a higher-ranking being allowing or disallowing an event that one would normally expect to happen for their own purposes, purposes that those who rank lower than them on the chessboard of life don't know or understand, or possibly can't even fathom. In this scenario - do they exist? Yes, from one perspective. No, from another. Either way, the result is that the event happened however you define it. And to Jack, who can't possibly calculate that there's a frozen donkey wheel under this island or that one could "move" the island (who would/could?), what he sees when the island disappears looks like magic and miracle indeed.

Ben and Locke take the elevator down.

Ben: Didn't you tell him?
Locke: I tried.

Keamy would like to hear from Ben why Widmore would pay him such a huge sum to capture Ben and bring him back alive. All Ben wants to know is whether Widmore ordered Alex's death. When the mercs bring Ben to the chopper, Kate comes running. They stop her. She says she was being chased... by Ben's people. We did know that Richard & Co. had captured her, so this is likely their strategy. The mercs fan out, and the whispers begin. The Ohters kick some mercenary tail.

Once Ben is rescued and Keamy is down (but clearly not dead, because the freighter didn't blow up), Ben thanks Richard for coming - this was obviously Ben's suggestion with the flashy mirror trick he used - and Richard does indeed act like it was a favor rather than a requirement for him to have done so. Ben asks what the arrangement was for procuring Kate and Sayid's help. They get to leave the island in the helicopter. So be it. Ben lets them.

Michael's last sacrificial act - the one that frees him to die (and perhaps redeems him? He does see Libby once more before he goes) - is freezing the battery to slow the explosion and give people some time to get clear.

Miles doesn't want to leave the island, and he's surprised that Charlotte doesn't want to stay, after all the effort it took her "to get back here." She asks what he means, but he definitely knows something.