Title: Approaching Zero
Air Date: February 1, 1998
Synopsis: Michael’s mentor Jurgen wants to build a relationship with Nikita. Section wants to recover some damaging information that Jurgen holds over them.
Nikita is at her apartment with Jurgen. She questions his past and he avoids the subject, then reminds her that he covered for her and Michael when he didn’t reveal she wasn’t a hostage while outside Section. Michael drops by, "Just wanted to see how you were doing." After seeing Jurgen, Michael leaves – somewhat troubled by the scene. Operations briefs the team on a missing satellite that crashed into the ocean. Section must recover the satellite before its nuclear power source falls into the wrong hands. The team departs and boards a ship near the splashdown site, spreading out to search the ship. Back in Section, Birkhoff is monitoring an aircraft approaching the ship. The jet fires at the ship, destroying it moments after the team leaps over the side.
Operations debriefs the team. Michael tells Jurgen to assist Walter with an analysis. Jurgen replies, "I’ll get to it in the morning." Operations watches the exchange somewhat amused at Jurgen’s blatant disregard for an order. As Nikita and Jurgen leave, she questions how he got away with disobeying. He dodges the question. Michael reports to Madeline and informs her that Nikita and Jurgen are forming an attachment. "Keep me informed." she replies in dismissal. Next morning, Michael asks Nikita why she wasn’t in when he called. Nikita accuses him of being jealous, and he leads her to believe he doesn’t care if she sees Jurgen.
Briefing. The satellite was actually military and is programmed with defense codes – its recovery is even more urgent. Madeline questions Nikita, probing her feelings toward Jurgen. Walter gets Nikita wired for the mission. A team assembles to leave but as Nikita approaches, Michael receives a call aborting the mission. He simply turns and walks away from a confused Nikita. Later, as Walter helps Nikita remove her monitoring equipment he gets paged and Michael takes his place. He leaves a single sensor on the middle of her back.
Nikita goes to Jurgen’s house and Michael and Madeline listen as Nikita says its over between her and Michael. Michael continues to monitor as Birkhoff attempts to establish some type of lock. As Jurgen and Nikita start to get intimate Michael asks Birkhoff, "Do you have a lock…hurry." Birkhoff reports success and Michael immediately calls Nikita in. Operations briefs Jurgen and Nikita on their mission. They capture their target and return.
Meanwhile, Michael and Birkhoff break into Jurgen’s house with some high-tech equipment and accomplish their own mission. When Jurgen and Nikita return, Operations tells Jurgen to start following orders. Jurgen has a revelation and dashes off down the corridor with Nikita close behind, he races to his house and finds his computer has been compromised. "I’m dead." he states to a confused Nikita. Then Jurgen elaborates about the damaging info that he had on Section, which was why he was allowed more freedom. But Section has done damage control. He turns on Nikita as he realizes the only why Section could’ve gotten past the security was from inside; and shows her the sensor that Michael left on her back. Nikita realizes she was used. Jurgen tells her to leave. Nikita confronts Michael with an icy stare, then they enter his office for privacy. Michael explains he never meant to hurt her but Jurgen couldn’t be allowed to have power over Section. "I have to keep my feelings separate. They’re not often seen…but they’re there."
A team departs for the, finally discovered, location of the satellite to retrieve the onboard computer. They infiltrate the compound killing numerous guards in the way. Michael finds the satellite enclosed in bullet proof glass and nearly ready to upload the deciphered data. Operations orders it destroyed and Michael places a charge as the team evacuates. However, the charge malfunctions and someone must detonate it manually (no chance of survival). Michael starts inside, Jurgen tells him he wants to do it then shoots Michael in the leg and rushes inside. Jurgen activates the charge and the building crumbles around him. Operations and Madeline offer Nikita a vacation. She runs into Michael on her way out. "Jurgen trained me…I’ll miss him." "So will I."