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Carmen is on a boat in the middle of the ocean. Zack and Ivy man the helm.

Player: You're risking your neck on the word of Coach Brunt without even trying to talk to Shadowsan?

Carmen: So he can tell me only half the story like always? No, Player, I'll learn what there is to know about my family all on my own, the only sure way I know. I'm going back to VILE Island.

Thunder crashes.

Ivy: She said she'd never go back.

Zack: I said I'd never go back to that cheese steak joint in Southie after it made my guts explode, but, mm-hmm, those peppers and onions!

Ivy: My fist is gonna make your guts explode if you say anything to upset Carmen!

Carmen: Every mission in VILE's history is archived on their mainframe. I'll infiltrate the server room and sync you in so you can download the case files. It'll be just like old times.

Player: Red, are you sure this isn't one for ACME?

Carmen: Coach Brunt's little sneak attack on the train fried my communicator. I have no way of contacting Chief.

Player: I can probably help with that.

Carmen: What?

Player: I traced her transmission when I spotted you talking to her in Botswana. It was Shadowsan's idea.

Carmen: Infiltrating VILE requires stealth. If they saw ACME coming, they'd wipe all data from the site and I might never learn the truth.

Zack: Carm, approaching position!

Thunder rumbles.

Carmen: No!

Player: Red, what is it?

Carmen: It's gone. The academy, all of it.

Flashback to two weeks earlier at VILE Academy. The Faculty members stand outside, facing the ocean.

Maelstrom: Our glorious institution has weathered many storms, and I have every conviction that we will weather this one.

Bellum: We should welcome this new chapter in VILE's history as a new beginning.

Brunt: Like our last "new beginning" went so well? That would be the day Shadowsan brought Black Sheep to this island. And for that, I vow to mash him up and stuff him into fancy her red hat!

Maelstrom: There are more devastating ways to wreak revenge than bodily harm, Coach dearest.

Brunt: Oh? I'm not personally familiar with those ways.

Maelstrom: Have you forgotten that we possess secrets which would certainly put the two of them at each other's throats?

Cleo: Imagine what payback Carmen Sandiego might wreak upon Shadowsan if she ever learned the truth.

Brunt: Let them destroy each other from the inside out.

Maelstrom: Do consider planting that seed in Carmen's head instead of your fist the next time she darkens your path. Who knows? In Botswana perhaps.

Vlad: Evacuation complete.

Maelstrom: Then tallyho.

A helicopter carries the Faculty away from the island.

Cleo: Farewell, sweet palace.

Maelstrom: Cleaners, scrub it.

The Academy explodes behind them.

Flash forward to one week later on the island. Leaves rustle. Chase walks out of the brush, looking disheveled.

Chase: This is the last time I ever take the advice of Ms. Argent. Or anyone in a dream!

Chase grunts as he tries to start his boat, to no avail. He growls. He checks the fuel gauge, which reads empty.

Chase: No. No, no, no, no!

Chase takes out his cellphone. It beeps, telling him there is no signal.

Chase: No!

Back to present.

Player: I was able to tap into a weather satellite system, Red. I'm seeing all sorts of wreckage on the ocean floor.

Carmen is in her diving suit, preparing to dive in.

Carmen: If the case files are down there, I'll find them. I won't let VILE rob the truth from me.

She dives in and swims through the wreckage until she finds the remnants of the server room.

Carmen: Player, I'm in.

Flash forward to a few hours later. Zack is snoring.

Ivy: She's been down there a long time.

Carmen resurfaces.

Ivy: Carmen!

Zack gasps, waking.

Zack: Peppers and onions!

Ivy grunts as she pulls Carmen out of the water.

Ivy: Did you find what you were after?

Carmen holds up a hard drive.

Carmen: We need to get this to Player.

On the island, birds chirp. Chase is sleeping and groans at the sound of a motor whirring.

Chase: Huh?

He chases after Carmen's boat, panting.

Chase: Wait! Wait!

Chase (whimpering): No.

The VILE Faculty are gathered around a table in a diner.

Bellum: We might have fared far worse in Botswana if Coach Brunt or any operatives had been taken captive.

Cleo: Or if any key intelligence had been confiscated by ACME.

Maelstrom: We owe it to Roundabout's strategic foresight in the matter. And for that, he has my vote.

Roundabout's phone buzzes. He picks up.

Roundabout: Gunnar! Terribly sorry again about the bungle in Botswana, old chap.

Maelstrom: It all worked out, Roundabout. In fact, we've decided it's high time our open position be filled... by you.

Roundabout: Fancy that! I would be honored to take my seat in the illustrious Faculty lounge, at the table which looks not at all how I remembered it.

A waitress approaches the table, holding a coffee pot.

Waitress: Who here needs a refill?

Cleo scoffs.

Cleo: Reswill.

Brunt: Hit me, sugar.

Maelstrom: A temporary workspace. Our first order of business with you onboard will be to scout a suitable site for our relocation.

On the island, Chase attempts to start a fire, grunting. He attempts to spear a fish but ends up stabbing his own foot and yelps. He is still trying to start a fire, panting. An insect chirps; it crunches in his mouth and pinches his tongue.

Chase: Ah!

Chase is still trying to start a fire, grunting.

Chase: Come on, come on!

Chase successfully spears a fish, grunting.

Chase: Ha ha!

Chase manages to start a fire and laughs.

Chase: I have created fire! All hail the fire king!

Chase laughs. A spark is carried by the wind to his shelter. Chase laughs and hums before he sees his shelter aflame.

Chase: No. No, no, no, no!

His fish burns and becomes ash.

Chase: No!

A captain at sea spots the smoke plume from Chase's fire.

Chase: No. No.

A helicopter whirs and lowers a ladder to Chase, rescuing him. He checks his phone, which beeps with new voicemail. He clicks it.

Supervisor: Devineaux. This is your supervisor speaking. I must regretfully terminate you from Interpol. Have a nice life.

The receiver clicks.

Player is hacking the case file Carmen gave him.

Player: Red, I just retrieved the file. Buenos Aires, Argentina, 20 years ago. So far, Brunt's story checks out. Shadowsan was dispatched there to take out a hit on someone named "Dexter Wolfe."

Carmen: Wolfe? Could that be my family name? Does it say anything about a wife or—

Player: No, it doesn't.

Carmen: Why did they want Wolfe gone? Well, he must have been onto them. He was Interpol?

Player: Not Interpol, a traitor to VILE.

Carmen: So "Wolfe" was a codename. He was a VILE operative?

Player: Not exactly. He was VILE Faculty.

In his room, Shadowsan hangs a hannya mask, his back to Carmen, who watches him from the door.

Shadowsan: Your silence... is like thunder.

Carmen: Did you take my father's life?

Shadowsan: No.

Carmen: Dexter Wolfe. I read the files.

Shadowsan: I see.

Carmen: If you run, I will find you.

Shadowsan faces her.

Shadowsan: No more running.

He sits in seiza.

Shadowsan: No more secrets.

Carmen: I'm listening.

Shadowsan: Your father taught Stealth 101 at VILE Academy during my time there.

Flashback to Shadowsan as a student at VILE.

Shadowsan (V.O.): I learned a lot from Instructor Wolfe... when he was present. For, like his namesake, The Wolf relished the hunt far too much to lead an idle academic life.

Wolfe robs a bank and pickpockets multiple people.

Shadowsan (V.O.): The Faculty tolerated Wolfe's leaves of absence because he always delivered. Never bypassing an opportunity to steal the shirt off someone's back if he saw fit.

Shadowsan arrives on the island and appears before the Faculty.

Shadowsan (V.O.): I was a first year operative when I was called back for an urgent matter. Dexter Wolfe had been going off grid for longer spells with greater frequency. The Faculty suspected that Wolfe's excursions were no longer crime related and discovered that he had been secretly moving VILE assets into personal Swiss bank accounts. The signs were all there... your father had been preparing to leave VILE.

Maelstrom makes a cutting motion over his throat to Shadowsan.

Shadowsan (V.O.): And no one ever leaves VILE.

In Argentina, Shadowsan watches Wolfe steps off a bus.

Shadowsan (V.O.): I was hand-picked for my specific talents. My orders were to track the movements of my former teacher. Gather what information I could about the nature of his betrayal and tie off loose ends.

Wolfe pulls up to a house.

Shadowsan (V.O.): I tracked Wolfe to a town just outside Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was immediately clear that he had indeed been leading a secret life in South America and was preparing to run.

Wolfe grabs a shirt from his closet, where Shadowsan is hiding.

Shadowsan (V.O.): And that I had no other option but to carry out my mission.

Shadowsan grabs the hilt of his sword.

Shadowsan: Yet an unexpected obstacle dropped into my path.

A baby babbles. Wolfe picks the baby up.

Shadowsan (V.O.): You.

Baby Carmen babbles.

Shadowsan (V.O.): If your mother were anywhere on those grounds that day, I never saw her. Only a nanny, several packed suitcases, and plane tickets.

Baby Carmen babbles, having found her way into the closet, and tugs on Shadowsan. Carmen looks at her father and points to the closet.

Shadowsan (V.O.): It was all too easy to see why Wolfe had wanted out of VILE. Being a father had changed him. He had been planning to end his criminal career not for himself, but for his daughter, his family.

Back to the present.

Carmen: You stole his life.

Shadowsan: As you well know more than anyone, Carmen, I have made grave mistakes. It is this road that I once chose. But I do not consider myself an evil man, despite my former allegiances... only a soldier with orders to obey. Yet, nothing could have prepared me for what happened next.

Flashback to Shadowsan, Wolfe, and baby Carmen in Wolfe's residence. Wolfe spots an agent jumping his fence.

Shadowsan (V.O.) It appeared VILE had not been the only entity hunting The Wolf.

Several agents enter the property brandishing weapons. Carmen babbles. Her father picks her up and hides her in the closet.

Shadowsan (V.O.): Your father promised to return soon and asked you to play a game. See how long you could remain quiet.

Baby Carmen cries. Outside, a dog growls. An agent knocks on the door. Carmen sobs.

Shadowsan (V.O.): His words failed to convince, so he found another way to pacify you.

Wolfe hands Carmen the matryoshka.

Shadowsan (V.O.): He knew he might never see you again. I could see it in his eyes.

Wolfe closes the closet and opens a window.

Shadowsan (V.O.): I am convinced that every decision your father subsequently made was with your safety in mind. But desperation has a way of making even the most accomplished thief err in judgement.

An agent spots Wolfe running to his car and follows him.

Shadowsan (V.O.): Your father's life was not robbed by VILE, but by a young agent.

Shadowsan watches the agent draws their gun.

Shadowsan (V.O.): I never saw her again, not until recently... when I came to realize she is now the Chief of ACME.

Wolfe takes car keys out of his pocket, but Chief mistakes them for a gun. A gunshot sounds out; she has shot him dead.

Shadowsan (V.O.): And that is how the deed was done.

Back to present.

Carmen: You're lying. The case file didn't mention Chief or Interpol.

Shadowsan: With good reason. The Faculty relied solely on my report and I opted to withhold details. If there were any way to prove it to you, I would, but no physical evidence survived. Wolfe may have been a traitor, but he was also a direct link to VILE.

Flash back to Shadowsan and baby Carmen in Wolfe's house. Carmen is crying.

Shadowsan (V.O.): Protocol dictated that I scrub the sight of anything potentially incriminating quickly, before the police could enter.

Shadowsan picks up the burning matryoshka and hands it to baby Carmen.

Shadowsan (V.O.): You were the only loose end I was thoroughly unprepared to tie off.

Fire crackles as the house goes up in flames. Outside, the other agents take notice, and Chief is furious.

Back at VILE Island, baby Carmen crawls across the Faculty table.

Shadowsan (V.O.): Explaining any particulars of how the deed was done seemed entirely beside the point at the time...

Carmen babbles.

Shadowsan (V.O.): ...being that I had more unusual actions to justify.

Cleo: Oh.

Carmen blows raspberries.

Cleo: Why on Earth would you bring this thing back to the island?

Brunt: Well, now what was Shadowsan supposed to do?

Maelstrom: What we always do with loose ends.

Bellum: The child is far too young to have any memory of anything which could compromise us in the future.

Cleo (stuttering): But what do we feed it? And who will clean its...

Cleo shudders. Carmen babbles.

Carmen holds something up. Bellum gasps.

Bellum: My pocket protector!

Brunt: Well, well, looks like lil' lambkins is a natural-born thief.

Bellum: Like her father.

Maelstrom: With proper rearing, she could make a fine operative one day.

Brunt picks up baby Carmen.

Brunt: Oh-ho! Yes, yes, yes, come to mama bear.

Carmen giggles.

Shadowsan (V.O.): We entered a pact to keep your lineage secret from you.

Back to present.

Shadowsan: That was the first vote taken by the Faculty that night.

Carmen: And the second?

Shadowsan: The decision to award your father's vacant seat to me in return for my deed.

Carmen: All this time... Even if I believed you, why would you keep it a secret? Why would you make me find out on my own?

Shadowsan: Because I have spent nearly half my life watching you forge a remarkable path, one of honor and courage. A road of your own choosing. I feared that learning VILE's blood runs in your veins might cause you to question your life's mission. I feared providing you with any excuse to veer from your course against your one true enemy.

In Chief's apartment, the alarm clock beeps. She shuts it off.

Chief yawns. A shower knob squeals as she turns it on. Her toothbrush whirs as she brushes her teeth.

She sats down a bowl for her cat, who purrs. As she exits her apartment, Chief clicks her tongue at her cat, who meows back.

At a café, Zack and Ivy are handling Chief's order.

Zack: One non-fat latte, coming right up!

Ivy hits the cash register, sighing.

Ivy: Stupid thing won't open.

Chief: First day?

Ivy: That obvious, huh?

Behind Ivy, steam hisses from the espresso machine.

Zack: Ooh, baby, that's hot!

Chief chuckles.

Bells jingle as the door opens. Chief turns to see Carmen. The door closes. The lock clicks and Carmen flips the "Open" sign to "Closed."

Carmen: I would have called. Lost my pen.

Chief: So, you must be ready to enlist.

Carmen: I'm still undecided.

In the background, Chief's latte overflows as Zack and Ivy argue over it.

Chief: I'm not getting my latte, am I?

Carmen: I wouldn't drink it.

Chief: You went to some trouble to find me, Sandiego. I assume to get to know me better before you can trust me.

Carmen: I know you like cats. Persian long-hairs, apparently.

Chief picks a strand of fur off her jacket.

Chief: You are good.

Carmen: Does it have a name?

Chief: Commander.

Carmen: Cute. When I'm ready, you'll know.

Bells jingle as she exits the cafe. Chief finds a VILE hard drive on Carmen's seat.

Agent Argent and Agent Zari are working together. Chief walks in, in person.

Julia: Chief? But you're...

Chief: Special occasion, Argent. We're about to receive confirmation.

Julia: Of what?

Chief: Of your remarkable instincts regarding one Carmen Sandiego.

Chief plugs the hard drive in and it beeps. A computer whirs. A loading screen appears and then distorts.

Julia: Something's wrong.

A white hat appears on the screen.

Julia: We have a breach. Someone's in the network.

Zari: Good luck accessing ACME files without a pass code.

Chief: No!

Chief grunts.

In their van, Carmen, Zack, and Ivy have Player on the line.

Player: We're in. We just need that pass code.

Carmen: Try variations on "Commander."

Player: Boom! I'm on a shopping spree. Shadowsan's story checks out. Former Interpol Agent Tamara Fraser is on record taking responsibility for Wolfe's death and leveraging the case to form a special investigative unit-- ACME. According to this, ACME's very first case file, Wolfe set fire to what was assumed to be his own vila. By all indications, they never realized anyone else, including you, was present. Wolfe wasn't the name on the house deed, though. The actual homeowner succumbed to a terminal illness just two weeks earlier. A woman, Vera Cruz.

Carmen: Sounds like a codename.

Player: We are dealing with VILE.

Carmen: Which is why I won't believe any obituary in ACME's files. Not without proof.

In a cemetery, Shadowsan and Carmen watch the casket of Vera Cruz as it is dug up. Shadowsan opens it. It is empty.

Shadowsan: Textbook Stealth 101.

Carmen imagines Wolfe carrying her as baby, stepping off a plane to meet with her mother.

Carmen (V.O.): We would have rendezvoused with her to start a new life somewhere.

Baby Carmen stumbles towards her mother.

Shadowsan (V.O.): Wolfe clearly fabricated your mother's passing to enable her to vanish without a trace.

Back to present.

Carmen: Everyone leaves a trace. Somewhere out there, I have a mother who may or may not know I'm alive. Are you with me?

Shadowsan: To the end of the line.

Carmen: Then let's find her.

Chase is shaving when his phone buzzes. He growls and picks up. It beeps.

Chase: What is it?

Chief: It is your lucky day, gumshoe. You're being reactivated. Carmen Sandiego has crossed a line, and I am dedicating ACME to taking her down. Think you can bring the heat, Agent Devineaux?

Dramatic music plays.

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