There was never anything to suggest that something was wrong when the surgeons of Seattle Grace Hospital were on a team building exercise at an estate out in the bush of Seattle. Doctors Derek Shepherd, Miranda Bailey, Preston Burke, Richard Webber, all attending surgeons and their interns Doctors Meredith Grey, Isobel 'Izzy' Stevens, George O'Malley, Alex Karev and Cristina Yang were all out with field surgeon Doctor Katherine 'Kate' Shepherd on her estate.
The Doctors split into two teams – Team 1) Shepherd/O'Malley, Team 2) Bailey/Grey, Team 3) Burke/Stevens, Team 4) Webber/Yang and Team 5) Shepherd/Karev – and they went out to complete several tasks on horseback. Shepherd and Karev had just solved their last clue and were on their way to their final destination when Kate's satellite phone rang.
Kate: "Kate Shepherd"
Caller: "Kate, it's Matt. I'm in chopper three and we've lost a visual on team 2"
Kate: "OK Matt. Head back to base and round up the rest of the team, do a thorough head count and ask if they have seen them. I'm on my way there now."
Matt: "Will do. Over and out"
Kate: "Alex lets go, Bailey and Grey are suspected missing"
Alex: "Out here that can't be good"
Kate: "That is an understatement"
Kate and Alex got back to the Homestead where the rest of the teams were waiting. Kate quickly dismounted and went to find Matt, one of her best pilots. He gave her the low-down.
Matt: "None of the teams saw Bailey or Grey after everyone split up. However, teams three and four heard screaming coming from the direction of the south – west boundary. Natalie and Scott have taken choppers one and two to do a swoop of the paddock and the surrounding areas.
The crackling of the radio made everyone crowd around to listen.
Scott: "Chopper one to base. Base do you copy?"
Kate: "Copy Scott, what have you got?"
Scott: "Neither Natalie or have spotted anything. Calling a code 1 emergency"
Kate: "Copy that. Rounding up SAR. Make your way back here to pick up some searchers."
Scott: "Roger that. Choppers one and two returning to base. Over and out"
30 minutes later, the SAR crew had assembled and had been briefed. They were making their way out to the choppers and horses when SGH Chief Webber approached Kate.
Webber: "Kate, I understand that this isn't normal procedure and that the situation is serious but that's two of my people out there and the rest of us just want to help search for Bailey and Grey. Is there anyway that this can happen?"
Kate: "Hold on, I'll check with the rest of my team"
Kate went to check with her team and returned to them a short time later.
Kate: "I've checked with the team and they have agreed to take you all out to assist with the searching. But if any of you start to panic or start to get stressed, you will be flown back here as soon as we can. I know that sounds harsh, but this is a large estate and it would be easy to get lost. Let me make it clear, this whole estate will be search although at the time it might not seem like it. Understand?"
SGH surgeons: "Absolutely"
Kate: "Alright. If you want to go by chopper, stand with Matt. If you want to go out on horseback, stand with Liz"
The team split up and everyone moved out. Kate took charge of the whole search, going out on horseback, Liz was in charge of the horse based searchers while Matt took charge of the aerial team.
They had only been searching for ten minutes when their radio crackled into life. Kate had paired up with Derek. Later, she would learn exactly how critical it was that they spend this time together.
Natalie: "Chopper one to portable one, portable one do you copy?"
Kate: "Chopper one go ahead"
Natalie: "I'm out to the west of the paddock and I have a visual on Casablanca and Casanova"
Kate: "Copy that. Can you see anything that might give us a clue to where they have come from or where they might have been?"
Natalie: "Negative on that. They look pretty worn out and they're sweaty but other than that. Nothing."
Kate: "Copy that. Derek and I'll head out there now."
Natalie: "Roger that. Chopper one out"
Derek and Kate took off for the paddock. It didn't take long for them to get there. When they arrived, the rest of the searchers were already there and spread out to search the area when Kate noticed something in the distance. Taking off on her horse, she headed off in the direction of the culvert.
When she got there, she started to look for whatever it was that caught her eye. After moments of searching, she found it.
Kate: Portable one to portable two. Portable two do you copy?"
Scott: Portable two go ahead"
Kate: I think I have something over here. Can I have the whole team here to assist?"
Scott: "Copy that. Search team en route. Out"
When the team arrived, Kate was already searching the immediate area. As soon as the choppers landed, she raced to Scott's chopper and got the abseiling gear out of the back.
Mike: "Kate. What the hell is going on?"
Kate: "Please. Just trust me on this"
Mike: "C'mon Kate. What do you think you've found?"
Derek: "If you think you know where Meredith is. You better say something"
Scott: "What the hell is that supposed to mean?"
Natalie: "Was that a threat Dr Shepherd?"
Izzy: "Don't be silly. Dr Shepherd would never threaten someone"
Scott: "That's not how it sounded from over here"
George: "What are you trying to say? That Derek is threatening Kate and Izzy's lying about it?"
Alex: "If you're trying to say something about one of us surgeons then you should have the balls to say so. Not stand there all high and mighty"
Burke: "Where's Kate?"
While the others were busy arguing, Kate had closed off the perimeter and was setting up the anchors, pulleys and the choppers ready for an aerial drop.
Shakira: "What's up Kate?"
Kate: "Nothing. Just prepping for the worst"
Shakira: "There's something that your not telling us isn't there?"
Kate: "Look. I have my suspicions but I don't want to scare anyone unless absolutely necessary"
Michaela: "Bomb kit's in chopper four and ready to go"
Derek: "Wait. Did I just hear you right? Did you say bomb kit?"
Todd: "She sure did. Got a problem Dr Shepherd?"
Mike: "Let it go guys. For now at least"
Matt: "Ready Kate?"
Kate: "Lets just get it over and done with shall we?"
Natalie: "Lets do it"
Scott and Natalie got the chopper in position while Kate attached herself to the cable that would take her into the unknown.
Natalie: "Chopper one in position. Advise when ready for the drop"Kate: "Come on Kate. You can do this"
It was now or never. Kate gave Shakira the thumbs up that would tell her to get Scott to start lowering her down.
Right at the last minute, she turned her oxygen tanks on and got the other two ready. Before darkness enveloped her, the last thing she saw was the hopeful eyes of the crowd above.
Once Kate reached the bottom of the culvert, she did a quick survey of the site and radioed through to the crew.
Kate: "Headset one to Chopper one and portable three"
Natalie: "Chopper one receiving"
Shakira: "Portable three receiving"
Kate: "Ok. How are all things above ground?"
Natalie: "A OK in the chopper"
Shakira: "All ok above ground"
Kate: "Good. Shakira, how are the others from SGH holding up?"
Shakira: "They are still on edge. Waiting for good news"
Scott: "How are you doing Kate?"
Kate: "Pretty good. Air is incredibly thin. Start lowering down more oxygen tanks Shakira"
Shakira: Will do. Should get to you soon"
It was another painful wait for the ground crew as they waited for news from Kate. They thought that things were going incredibly well until Kate came back on the line with the news that none of them wanted to hear.
Kate: Headset one to portable three and chopper one. This is an emergency call. Clear the area for a possible bomb explosion.
No one wanted to hear that call but they knew that they had to obey Kate's orders.
Meanwhile, Kate was underground trying to get Meredith and Miranda into a safe place incase there was an explosion.
She had just gotten them to a semi-safe place. When an explosion rocked the entire paddock. Rocks and debris fell onto the three unsuspecting victims.
There was a stony silence under ground with no movement seen from above.
It was several minutes until everyone had realized the enormity of what had just happened. Then all hell broke loose. With Kate, Miranda and Meredith all trapped down the culvert, the rest of the team scrambled to get some order into the rescue.
Meanwhile, Kate was slowly regaining consciousness. She sat up slowly and looked around her at the devastation. She saw that Meredith was lying not far from her, so she crawled her way over there. Kate knew that she had to radio to the crew to tell them that they had all survived, but to be honest, she didn't want to. She also knew that she had to check Meredith and Miranda to ensure that they had an open airway and had oxygen from the tanks.
Ten minutes later, she knew she had to do it.
Kate: "Headset one to all units, we have survived the initial explosion with severe injuries. Send down gear for a retrieval"Scott: "Copy that Kate. I don't think you know how glad we are to hear those words spoken by your voice"
Kate: "Probably about as glad as I am to hear your voice"
Scott: "Chopper one lowering two basket stretchers and some extra supplies, you know the drill"
Kate: "Copy that. See you on the ground. Headset one out"
Scott and Natalie slowly maneuvered the two basket stretchers up to the opening of the culvert with Kate harnessed between them to keep them steady. As they came to the top, Kate could see all the searchers looking relieved to see that they had made it to the top. No one more so then Derek Shepherd.
Derek: I never realized the extent of my feelings for Meredith until she went missing. I thought that my heart would break. The waiting that I had to endure was mind numbing. I swear every time Kate came onto the radio was murder. How can she do that? Go into the unknown like that I mean. As far as I can tell, she hasn't been here long and she doesn't know the whole property yet, but here she is going into a culvert without knowing what's down there. There's so much about her that is familiar, yet I can't quite work it out. She reminds me of someone I know, but whom? Anyway, back to Meredith. When the call came through that there was a bomb down there and that the area had to be cleared for a possible bomb explosion, I swear, I nearly jumped down to be with Meredith. To tell her that I love her and that I can't live without her or that I wanted to try. When the bomb went off, Izzy screamed and started crying. Alex had to take her away from the area where we were all standing. All of the interns were crying. Then it hit me. Miranda was down there as well. There was a possibility that SGH had just lost two fine doctors. And I could've just lost my soul mate. Then the best thing happened, Kate came back on the radio and announced that they were all alive, but that Miranda and Meredith both had severe head injuries and extensive damage and that she, Kate, suspected that she had a concussion and a broken leg. All I could do was take off and break the good news to Izzy, who was now surrounded by the rest of the interns. They were all so elated, who could blame them. I know I didn't.
Meredith, Miranda and Kate were flown to SGH in individual helicopters, Kate was accompanied by Burke, Karev and Yang, Meredith was with Shepherd, Stevens and O'Malley while Miranda, the most critical, was cared for Webber and three of Kate's field assistants.
There was a hard wait for all involved as all three of them had to undergo surgery to repair the damage.
Kate and Meredith pulled through the surgery and were awake after coming out of the anesthetic. However, Miranda wasn't so lucky and was put into a drug-induced coma to let her body heal. Unfortunately, she wasn't to wake from the coma and died three days later
This affected everyone involved. Even though Miranda was known as "The Nazi", she was still a well-respected surgeon, colleague and an unexpected allay. She was the type of surgeon who always went into bat for one of her interns if she felt that they were being unfairly treated or if their course of treatment to a patient would benefit them quicker and better. Everyone involved attended her funeral and Derek never left Meredith's side. It was to be announced that night that they had gotten engaged soon after Meredith had woken up.
It was a week later and Meredith and Kate were still in SGH, although both of them had recovered considerably, they still weren't well enough to be discharged.
Derek was sitting between their beds on the ward and the three of them were having a good conversation.
Derek: "I still can't believe that you kept it to yourself for so long"
Kate: "I had to. I had to protect you, me and everything that we had both individually worked so hard to accomplish. Anyway, what would you have said if I came up to you and announced that I was the sister that you never knew you had?"
Derek: "Good point"
Meredith: "I think it's fantastic. Now I have my fourth bridesmaid"
Kate: "You mean that Mer?"
Derek: "Oh yay girl talk"