|“||The dying have a special grace, and I think he saw straight into my heart. Honestly, I didn't want him to live. I wanted his suffering to end and for him to be with God where he could walk again and--and be happy. I wanted... I wanted him to die.||”|
|— Sister Molly to Tiago|
Raul Vega lies on the brink of death as his brother Mateo meets the charismatic Pachuco Fly Rico. Tiago and Lewis's investigation leads them to the temple of the radio evangelist, Sister Molly Finnister and her formidable mother, Miss Adelaide. Councilman Townsend and his cunning assistant Alex capitalize on the discord in the city to further their political goals. Peter Craft has a chance encounter with Elsa at the beach and his sons meet her unnerving boy, Frank. Lewis and his old friends investigate clandestine Third Reich activities.
At Los Angeles County Hospital, a respirator hissing and some clicking is heard as Maria Vega pulls down her orange stockings and takes out a rosary from her purse. She gets down on her knees to pray a Hail Mary by Raul’s bedside along with Mateo and Josefina. At the emergency entrance for the hospital, all the cops that were wounded are being brought in for care. Michener spots two cops up ahead and tries to stop Tiago from going inside. He tries to get him to use the backdoor since according to him "Those motherfuckers only see a brown face, same kind that shot them down." Tiago refuses saying that if he goes round back, he’ll be doing that for the rest of his life. Just as expected, when Tiago tries to go inside, Officer Reilly refuses to let him through and spits on him.
Inside, Tiago and Lewis run into Ned Vanderhoff, the precinct captain and their boss. After asking Lewis if he is alright, he tells the two of them that four cops are now dead. He mentions that Lancaster, another cop has lost an eye. He is astounded that no one saw anything and tells Tiago and Lewis to come see him because this whole thing needs to be sorted out. Once Vanderhoff leaves, Lewis tells Tiago that he is fine and that he should go and find his family. But Tiago doesn’t leave, instead he mentions to Lewis how they both know who shot him. But Lewis argues that he doesn’t, and neither does Tiago for that matter. He thanks Lewis, who once again suggests to Tiago to be with his family. As he is going to where Raul is being kept, he sees the wife of one of the cops crying over her husband's dead body. Tiago appears to feel for the woman, but when he looks to the side, he sees a room where the bodies of the Mexican folks who took part in the protest lay there.
Later, the doctor in charge of Raul’s care, tells Tiago that they took care of the officers first of course, but got to Raul without much delay. He continues by saying that Raul had swelling on the brain, so they had to open his skull to release the pressure. The doctor also explains that the bullet glanced off his skull but bone fragments shattered and lodged in the brain. In layman’s terms, Raul is being kept alive by the machine and tells Tiago he needs to start making plans for his brother’s imminent death once he is removed from the respirator.
After hearing from the doctor that Raul has 2-3 days at most left alive, once he is with his family he tries telling his mom that he will be calling Father Nuñez. Maria doesn’t let him saying that Raul is not going to die. Once Tiago pulls Mateo aside so the two of them can talk, he tells his older brother that he saw what Tiago did. He threatens Tiago by saying that if Raul dies, then Tiago is not a part of their family any longer.
In the cafeteria, Vanderhoff tells Lewis and Tiago that it appears as if they are all looking at a Mexican uprising. He brings up the white family from Beverly Hills that was butchered in some kind of voodoo ritual and how City Hall needs all of this resolved. Starting by Lewis concluding the Hazlett case. At this point, Vanderhoff say that it means following up victims, and essentially doing anything he fucking wants, but he needs to bring him a Mexican head on a plate. He wants the case concluded, not closed.
At City Hall, Councilman Townsend tells Alex that the Transportation Committee is well and truly fucked. He believes that The Arroyo Seco’s finished and blames the Mexicans for it. He mentions that to make matters worse, with Hazlett dead they have no one to build it. Alex argues that they can always find a firm with Townsend’s interest at heart perhaps. But Townsend counters that by saying that after today it is too politically sensitive and no one will touch it. Alex tells her boss that the four dead police officers are an opportunity they can use. She mentions how the people of Los Angeles are terrified right now. They’re locking their doors and turning out their lights; scared their gardeners are gonna hack them to pieces with their machetes. Thus, she argues, that what the people need is a champion to defend their interests, to be their voice and channel all their fear and anger into something constructive. Alex continues by saying that the motorway isn’t just a motorway anymore, but a symbol.
At Joyful Voices Ministry, Lewis and Tiago have arrived; with Lewis calling the gaudy building a little grandiose for his taste. They are stopped by one of the employees who tells the two detectives that it’s impossible right now for them to see Sister Molly. He explains that she is preparing for her service, and instead gets Miss Adelaide to talk to them. Lewis asks Miss Adelaide to tell them about James Hazlett. She mentions that his passing was a great loss to the temple. But gets defensive with Tiago when he asks if Hazlett had some kind of job at this ministry. When Lewis mentions that it’s just a simple question, Adelaide admits that Hazlett was a deacon in their organization and had various obligations commensurate to that position. One of which was being a bursar. She tells Lewis that she doesn’t know what else to add other than the fact that Hazlett was a valued member of their ministry. The two detectives press for more information, and Adelaide confesses that Hazlett had an office in the ministry for his bursarial work. She doesn’t want to show them around, but Lewis manages to distract her and let Tiago snoop around.
Tiago's snooping eventually leads him to see Molly as she’s preparing for the show. She looks sad and crestfallen until the curtain is pulled and shows her to the audience. By then she has turned on the charm and is sporting a dazzling smile and good energy. Which has Tiago completely enthralled once she starts singing.
In Hazlett’s office, Lewis asks Adelaide if Hazlett had any enemies. But rather than answering she blames the Mexicans. Before Lewis leaves with two of the books, Miss Adelaide tells the detective that this is the Lord’s house and they are sanctified in the blood of the lamb. Undeterred, he tells Adelaide that right now he is a little more concerned with the blood of Hazlett’s two kids.
Once they leave Joyful Voices Ministry, Lewis asks Tiago if he’s ever seen the film Beau Geste. It’s about three men in a French Foreign Legion fort, in the middle of the desert. All the other soldiers are dead, and they’re about to be attacked by Arabs. The guys put the dead bodies around the fort so that the Arabs think they have protection. Lewis sums the story up by explaining that it’s essentially a con, and that’s what the Hazlett case is. Between the bodies being painted up and left in the LA River and the Spanish Message written in blood, someone wants them to think it was race related. Which has Tiago realizing that amidst the distraction, they didn't ask the question of who had something to gain with Hazlett dead. Lewis is certain that Miss Adelaide has something to hide and is determined to find out what it is.
Meanwhile, Peter takes his sons, Tom and Trevor to the beach. The two young boys are building a sandcastle while his father reads Gone With the Wind. Tom tells Trevor that their sand castle won’t look right if they don’t have a parapet. When Tom calls Trevor ignorant for not knowing what a parapet is, Peter corrects him and explains that Trevor is merely ill-informed. Peter eventually spots Elsa and her son, Frank also on the beach. He goes over to say hi and invites Elsa and her son to join him back where his boys are at.
At the hospital, Maria continues to pray and Josefina lays by her brother’s bedside. A nurse comes by to treat Raul and sighs, saying Maria can’t be on the floor like that because it is unsanitary. Mateo goes in search of some soda pop and ends up crying near one of the vending machines. Officer Reilly taunts him and when Mateo turns around, Officer Reilly slaps him. He proceeds to call Mateo a "wetback cocksucker" and mentions how his partner got his eye shot out. He then begins to press on one of Mateo’s eyes asking him to scream for him. Mateo doesn’t give in and eventually gets stopped by Fly Rico. When Reilly says that there’s four of them, Rico mentions that there’s a whole city of people like him. The four cops leave, but not before Reilly says "one day" to Rico. After he has purchased two sodas pop; one for him and one for Mateo, he tells Mateo to find him at a place called The Cat. when Mateo asks him why, Rico answers by saying "Because you didn’t scream. You’re a Pachuco, baby."
Back at the beach, Frank ends up creeping out Tom and Trevor, when he says that dead people lie down. Tom tries to explain why they are all standing up but Frank just repeats "all dead" in a sing song voice.
Peter and Elsa go for a walk and discuss their lives post WWI. Elsa then asks about Peter’s wife. He explains that she burns in the sun, so she stayed home. Elsa replies that her husband is the same. Although, she and Frank love the beach. She looks at the ocean and dreams of going to Tahiti. She claims that after the war, she was living in the basement of a shoe store with her baby sister. There was no food in Berlin, so they had to leave. They went to a country where there should’ve been food, but there were only soldiers. It’s where she met her husband, and even then, she had no desires to be with him, but he had food, so she did what she had to. She cries and struggles to tell her story. Peter comforts her, agreeing that sailing off to Tahiti would be nice. Peter offers Elsa and Frank a ride home, but she insists that she’s fine. She shakes his hand as they part ways, and Frank says goodbye to Tom and Trevor, the former seemingly growing ever so suspicious of Frank.
At City Hall, Townsend talks about an Officer Maynard West, who was 27 years old while showing a bloodied shirt to reporters taking pictures. He shows the wife and mother of the deceased cop and he tells the press that the animals who killed him and the other three cops must be brought to justice. He talks about how the city of Los Angeles can no longer live under the shadow of their anarchy. He continues by saying that they fired first and shot their boys down in cold blood. So therefore they should show no mercy to them. He vows to build the motorway and mentions how he will be talking to the City Council the next day. Where he will introduce a motion in the aforementioned council to rename it the Maynard West Memorial Motorway.
Tiago returns to Joyful Voices Ministry and sees some cops taking statements from the people wanting to get in. He continues walking and sees a truck unloading some produce that has arrived for the ministry. He sneaks in as an employee and sees Sister Molly, who is washing dishes in the kitchen. He introduces himself as Detective Santiago Vega. Tiago mentions how he saw her singing earlier and the songs were great. Molly eventually admits that she didn’t know Hazlett all that well, but that they had dinner at his house once either last year or the year before that. She confesses that she finds it too difficult getting too close to the parishioners because they become attached. Molly describes Hazlett as even-keeled and level headed though. Randolph, who’s tasked with protecting Molly’s "virtue," tells Tiago to get back to the truck, unaware that he's a detective. Molly assures him that it’s fine and continues talking to Tiago, who wonders why Sister Molly isn’t out front, where more people can see her. She’s "too famous" and prefers it in the kitchen, where it’s more quiet. Her life is busy with touring, doing a radio show and recording songs. Her calling is pastoral. She simply wishes to help people. She’s been on the revival circuit since she was four. She would sing a song and her mother would pass a hat. They went from town to town, all over Nebraska. Sooner or later, fate just found her.
Lewis, Dottie, Anton, and Sam stake out a diner. As they wait, Dottie asks for a six-letter word meaning "given to fright." Richard Goss exits the diner with his bodyguard, Kurt, and an unidentified young man. Lewis takes his picture. The four of them came together in hopes of stopping the Third Reich from invading America. Sam suggests calling the FBI or Army, but Lewis doesn’t believe anyone would care. Lewis instructs Sam and Anton to follow Goss while he and Dottie follow the kid.
At the Craft house, Peter has sex with his wife, Linda. He imagines that it’s Elsa and gets rough with her, grabbing her by her throat. Afterward, Linda scolds him, reminding Peter that she’s his wife, "not some San Pedro tart."
Tiago and Molly continue their discussion. Sister Molly tells Tiago about the time that one of the congregants became ill. She visited him at the hospital at his mother’s behest. He was in an iron lung, looking up at her through a mirror. Molly told his mother that she couldn’t heal him, but she did pray with him. He was very close to death, and Molly thinks that he saw straight through her. Admittedly, Molly wanted him to die and for his suffering to end, so that he could be with God. Tiago reveals that his brother is dying and that they need to take him off the respirator tomorrow. Molly asks if Tiago prays for Raul, or if he believes in miracles or God. Tiago admits to not praying, believing in miracles or in God. Molly asks if he’s really sure, and tells him that if his brother is on the edge, Tiago needs to help him find grace. But he has to find it in himself first. She tells Tiago to come find her if his brother dies. When he thanks her by calling her Sister, Molly asks to just refer to her by her name. She explains that Sister is who she is on the stage and not the real her. Miss Adelaide and Randolph find them and take Molly to the car that’s waiting outside. She approaches Tiago and warns him that the next time she wants to talk to Molly, to do it through their lawyer.
Lewis and Dottie track the kid who met up with Goss to Caltech. Dottie remains in the car while Lewis follows him around back. He enters the Physics Department, where he appears upset as Lewis watches him through the window. Above the door, Lewis notices a caution sign regarding explosive material.
Sam and Anton follow Kurt and Richard Goss into the Hills. Anton warns Sam that they’re too close. Suddenly, the car ahead of them comes to a stop. Kurt exits and shoots them both in the head twice before pushing their car off a cliff. Richard Goss lights a cigarette and lets out a puff of the smoke from the cigarette.
In the hospital, Maria lights some black candles as she cries near Raul’s bed. She pleads with Santa Muerte to save her son. The candles go out with a gust of wind. She stops crying and when she opens her eyes, Raul is gone. Unbeknownst to her, Santa Muerte is watching from behind. Maria notices the a trail of blood on the hospital’s floor and follows it. The specks of blood get bigger, and Santa Muerte follows Maria closely behind. Maria turns around but doesn’t see anybody. However, in front of her, the lights to the hallway turn on for a second and a mysterious and shadowy figure is seen. When she turns back around, Maria comes face to face with Raul, who is standing up now and goes to touch his mother.
- Frank Branson directly quotes the title of this episode when discussing the dead soldiers at the beach with Tom and Trevor Craft.