Burn Wiki
Sea Change
Season 7, Episode 12
Air date September 5, 2013
Episode Guide
Tipping Point

Sea Change is the twelfth episode of the seventh season and the one hundred and tenth episode of Burn Notice.


Bad Guys:

James Kendrick and Sonya


Fiona and Jesse fear for Michael's life when he reveals his true identity to James.

Full Recap[]

Michael is locked up and Sonya comes to see him while is awaiting his fate. She tells him James wants to talk. First, though, she asks Michael, "Was any of it real between us?" Michael says he "had a job to do" to get close to her and the people she worked with. He goes on to say he was undercover for so long he lost track of who he was, and the part of him that believed in what they were doing cared for her. She says she, too, "had a job to do," even though she took pleasure in it. She says her heart belongs to her work.

Michael is brought to James, who tells Michael he's "deeply concerned" by what Michael has done. He says he has questions about what the CIA wants. Michael says they want "the leader of this group" -- James. And if they don't get him, Michael says his friends will send the rest of their lives in a CIA detention center. James asks Michael if he believes in what James and his group are doing. Michael says he hasn't always agreed with James' methods, but the jobs he helped with, "the ones no one else was willing to do," needed to be done. Michael says James made him believe there is something worth fighting for -- "something to believe in." James tells Michael he believes in him and there's a way to salvage their situation and save his friends. He tells Michael to go back to Miami and return himself to the CIA and "tell them a story." He needs to convince them he barely escaped James after the mission went wrong and he "moved heaven and Earth" to complete his mission but it was impossible. He also needs to convince them that he made James believe he was betrayed by an underling and that he, Michael, has heroically returned home to continue to his work.

"Will you do that?" James asks. "Will you lie to the CIA for me?"

We next see Michael calling Strong, telling him his cover is still intact and "the operation is still alive."

Michael gets back to the CIA and, in a secret room, a director tells Michael the case doesn't make sense. Agent Strong defends the fact that Michael wasn't able to get James. The director says he's pulling the operation and might assign a new team. Michael directly challenges the director of the CIA, asking him to trust him and let him "bring this home." The director gives Michael 48 hours and says if it isn't wrapped up by then, they'll be "back here discussing how deep a pit to drop you into."

That night, Fi comes over and has heard from Strong. Michael says he has to do the job on his own. She doesn't like that he's trusting the CIA. Michael says he just wants "this to be over." She tells him he needs the help of his friends, but he insists it "has to be this way." She walks out after telling Michael she hopes he knows what he's doing.

The next day, Fi meets with Sam and Jesse and tells them she put a tracker on Michael's gun. Jesse says they've got to let Michael "do his thing." Sam defends Michael, but Jesse says there's no harm in following Michael around a bit. Sam goes along as they set out to follow Michael to Fort Lauderdale.

Sam and Jesse watch Michael, who is sitting in his car alone at a marina. Sam decides to call Michael and see what's up. Michael tells Sam he drove to Fort Lauderdale to follow up on some leads and Sam tells him he's around to help if Michael needs it. Michael tells Sam that James is out of the country and won't make contact for a couple of days. Soon, they see Michael meeting James at the marina. Jesse is worried that Michael lied to them. Sam reluctantly agrees, "Mike switched sides."

Fi goes to Maddy with the news. Maddy wants to know where Michael is, but Fi says Michael doesn't want to talk and isn't returning their calls. Maddy asks what she's supposed to do. Fi tearfully says they need to get him away from James and Sonya and "all of it." Maddy worries about what will happen with her and Charlie. Maddy agrees to go along after a couple of days, but Fi tells her they only have a couple of hours.

Out at sea, Michael tells James that the CIA has given him 36 hours to complete the mission. James tells Michael he has to turn him in. Sonya rejects this idea, but James tells her that he's been compromised and the work of the group can continue without him. She says they'll need a leader and James says he sees two: Michael and Sonya. Michael will be a hero within the CIA and they'll never suspect their ace operative is protecting James' former organization from within. James says it's a "beautiful thing." Michael calls Strong and tells him to get his team ready because James is coming to Miami.

Meanwhile, Sam and Jesse are planning a trap where they're going to grab Michael and get him on a plane to get him away from James and his network. Sam is having second thoughts, though, worried Michael is going to hate them. Jesse reminds Sam that after he found out Michael had him burned he wanted to kill Michael, but changed his mind after being shown he was wrong.

Fi is dousing Maddy's house with lighter fluid to burn the house down as a distraction. Maddy tells Fi she's ready as she can be, adding, "it's not every day you get to burn down a house you spent 45 years living in." Fi says there are probably a lot of good memories, but Maddy says there are some bad ones, too. She shows Fi a picture of Michael and Nate as little boys on a Christmas morning. She says that was the year Frank put her in the hospital, but that morning was the happiest she'd ever seen her boys. She says she should've left the house a long time ago but couldn't. Fi tosses a lighter into the living room and the house goes up in flames. James' two men watching out run toward the house while Fi drives Maddy and Charlie away, stopping to blown up the guys' car with a molotov cocktail.

Michael and Sonya meet to discuss the plan for handing James over to the CIA. Sonya will board the helicopter that drops James off and everything will be handled. She gets a call, though, about the fire and Fi's escape with Maddy and Charlie at Maddy's house. She tells Michael about it and he calls Sam, who urges Michael to get over to meet him and Fi as soon as possible. Sam lies to Michael and says Fi is upset and unpredictable, and that she needs to hear from Michael. Michael at first resists, but when Sam pushes him more he decides to go. Sonya doesn't like that Fi is causing trouble and warns Michael that the mission can't go wrong. Michael leaves.

Michael pulls up and Jesse says the Taser is charged, rubber bullets are ready and sedatives are prepared. Sam convinces Michael to come into his car so they don't spook Fi. They drive off. Michael starts to get nervous and realizes Sam is lying to him about meeting Fi. He forces the car to a stop on a bridge while Fi and Jesse watch from afar through binoculars. Michael gets out of the car and yells at Sam, asking why he's lying to him. Sam asks Michael "who's lying to who, brother?" He tells Michael they followed him to his meeting with James. Michael tells Sam he doesn't understand and doesn't know everything. Michael says he is "protecting everyone." Sam tells Michael he's starting to believe what James is doing. Sam reminds Michael that he's supposed to be working for the CIA, but Michael yells back about how the CIA hired Simon and ruined his life. Sam says the CIA may not be perfect but they have to answer to somebody. "Who does James answer to?" Sam asks.

Michael says there's nothing wrong with James making up his own rules, but Sam asks how Nate would feel about that. Sam says the people who killed Nate probably thought they were fighting for something, too. Michael does not take this well and tells Sam that it will be different when he's the one running the organization and giving the orders. Sam can't believe it. He asks Michael what will happen when someone tries to get in his way. Michael starts to leave and Sam tells him he's not going anywhere. They get into a full-on fight that eventually takes them over the railing of the bridge and into the water -- a strategy Sam used from his Navy Seal days. Sam tries to hold Michael underwater as long as possible, using his own comfort in the water to his advantage. Michael plays like he's lost consciousness before elbowing Sam and swimming to the surface. Michael gets out of the water first and turns to Sam, who is behind him, telling him:

"Because we're friends and we've been through so much together, I'm going to let this go. But you stay the hell out of my way, Sam."

Michael gets back to Sonya and she asks if Fiona is under control. Michael says she doesn't have to worry about Fi, adding that this is what he wants and he'll do whatever the has to do to make it work. Michael calls James and tells him everything is ready. James says he'll be there in 20 minutes and tells Michael he's proud of him, adding, "my people are in good hands."

Sam, meanwhile, is upset with himself for having failed to grab Michael. He says they should get on the plane and leave. Fi insists they can still get to him. She's worried Michael's nearly too far gone to save. Sam says it's too late. He says he looked into Michael eyes and "he's lost."

Maddy chimes in and says they've all been through so much together and pleads with them not to give up on Michael -- "not now."

Fi, Jesse and Sam take off in Fi's car, going to Michael's location based on the tracker Fi put in his car.

Michael calls Strong and tells him the location and that James is inbound. Michael says he will take James down and bring him out to Strong.

Fi and the crew are speeding to the spot while Strong's team is headed there. Fi spots Michael and Sonya on the roof and they plot their way into the heavily guarded compound. There is one guard at the rear and that where they're headed.

Sonya and Michael are saying their goodbyes -- for now -- when the guard from the rear radios to Sonya and gets cut off. She says she's going to check the situation to make sure there are no problems. We see Sam and Jesse holding the guard, and Jesse smacks him in the back of the neck with the butt of the gun.

Now standing alone on the roof, Michael sees James' helicopter coming int he distance. The door to the roof opens and Michael turns around to see Fi.

Michael tells Fi she has to go and that he's trying to protect them and has already made his choice. She asks him who's going to protect him from making the worst decision of his life. She asks if it's too late for the Michael Westen she fell in love with, the one who knows this is wrong. He insists that she needs to leave.

Fi reminds Michael that Sam already warned him that someone, one day, would threaten the organization and he would have to make a choice.

"Well that day has come," she says, "and that someone is me."

Sonya gets on to the roof and asks what Fiona is doing there and that he assured her that Fi wouldn't be a problem. Fiona says Michael was wrong.

Sonya puts a hand on her gun and says she's giving Fi one chance to leave. Fi says she prefers the view on the roof.

"She needs to be dealt with, now," Sonya says.

Fi asks what that means, and Sonya says she'll show her. Sonya pulls out her gun and points it at Fi. Michael stops her, but Sonya says they can't let Fi destroy everything. Michael says he can talk to Fi, but Sonya is pressuring him, saying James is nearly there. Fi tells Michael, "You do what you think is right. If this is what you want, the man I love is gone."

Sonya tells Michael not to let Fiona hold him back, saying, "You need to let her go."

Fi asks him to look at her. He won't.

"Airight," Sonya says. "If you won't do it, I will."

Sonya raises her gun, we zoom in on Michael's face and the screen cuts to black with the sound of a single gun shot.

To be continued...

Spy facts[]

A spy's job, at the most basic level, is to deceive. You build a lie. You nurture that lie, selling it to your target bit by bit, until he believes. Your lie becomes your weapon, your salvation, the only thing that stands between you and disaster. When that lie falls away, you're left with only the hard truth of who you are and what you've done. When that happens, you're out of moves. The only thing there is to do then is await your fate.

As a spy, when you stop believing in the orders you've been given, you can't just walk away. You have to go deeper. You have to lie to the people giving those orders. You have to act as if nothing's wrong. And you have to make everyone think you're dedicated to the very operation you're trying to destroy.

When you've worked with the same team for many years, you understand exactly how each member operates. You know their strengths, their weaknesses, and how they act under pressure. You also know what it looks like when they're trying to hide something from you.

Navy SEALs use their comfort in the water to gain the upper hand. If an opponent panics, then all a SEAL has to do is hold his breath and let oxygen deprivation do its work. Which means the best way to fight a Navy SEAL in the water, is to force yourself to be as calm as they are. Let them think they've won and then make your move.