Ronnie found out that Shane was responsible for Lem's murder.
Undercover ICE agent Hernan is MIA.
A panicked Mara is preparing to flee with Shane and their son. Shane put together detailed files on all the Strike Team's illicit activities, an insurance policy should anything happen to him. To show Vic he's serious, Shane gave his former best friend a copy of the file.
Shane hired himself out to some Armenians and shook down an Iraqi gas station owner. Said gas station owner was found dead shortly after, the nozzle of a gas pump shoved down his throat.
A woman works on her sewing machine while listening to her iPod. She pats her cat on the head, then leaves her apartment. Some guys give her unsavory looks as she passes them on the sidewalk. The woman boards a city bus, which she rides to the hospital.
She sits beside the bed of a comatose old man and whispers, "The nurse said you are staying strong, Papa." She can't stay long, but she has a gift: the colorful lap blanket we saw her sewing earlier. The daughter says something in Armenian that (I assume) means "I love you" or something along those lines. Daughter stops at a church and blesses herself in front of the Mary statue.
Near a classroom, Shane sticks a badge in her face, demanding to see Kesakhian: "I've squeezed every food stamp-collecting, Benz-driving Armenian from here to Glendale." He knows the guy works here and isn't leaving without face time. The woman takes him to an office and says, "I'm Kesakhian."
Shane doesn't believe her: "I've got my nuts in a wringer right now and I don't like it when people crank the handle, okay? I need to speak to the real Kesakhian." Daughter K explains she's handling her father's affairs. Shane has a message: "I didn't sign up to be walked into a murder jackpot and he better goddamn well fix it."
He was hired to get more customers for the oil delivery company and now someone is dead. Daughter K objects to Shane's use of "Jesus Christ" because, ya know, they're in a church. "Jesus can kiss my ass," says Shane hotly.
|Now now, we know you don't mean that...|
"Just because people haven't been gettin' their feet chopped off lately doesn't get the Armenian mob into the Chamber of Commerce," says Shane. (Imagine the slogan if they did). Daughter K agrees to ask her dad about the gas station. Shane threatens to create problems for him if that doesn't happen.
At the Barn, Vic has arranged for a three-way sitdown: himself, Shane, and Claudette. The captain lightly asks about the tension between the two men. She knows what it's like to lose a friend, but she's sure there's more to it than that. Why have they been asking Nancy about Gilroy's Mexican connections? The disgraced former assistant chief's case has been closed for over a year.
"I'd think with your appeals hearing coming up, you'd be more helpful if you're interested in saving your job," she says to Vic. Shane answers, "Lem's killer. Lem was on the run, knew about Gilroy's underground railroad to Margaritaville. I thought somethin' mighta gone sideways in that regard. Coyote pullin' a double cross." (As Claudette herself once said, "You're stretching, son. Try yoga").
Shane reminds her that she's been stuck on the "dead Mexican hat dance" and not spending any time looking for Lem's killer. Vic glares at him. Claudette reprimands Shane for his tone. Shane doesn't think that'll be an issue again; he's transferring soon.
The conversation is interrupted by Kevin, accompanied by Hernan's handler. Talbert hasn't heard from Hernan in 36 hours and is starting to worry that his cover is blown. What are the locals doing to find him? Vic's been staking out Hernan's girlfriend and various associates. Talbert is holding them accountable for this. Claudette checks her watch: "It's 10:42 a.m. in case you need a time stamp for your ass-cover memo." Talbert wants any contact with Hernan reported immediately and leaves.
Vic remarks he can understand why Hernan reached out to him and not Talbert. Claudette is beginning to regret getting involved in the case, even though Hernan could help solve the San Marcos murders. No one knows Hernan is a fed except for the Strike Team, Claudette, and Dutch.
Kevin is confident Hernan can handle himself; they could get him killed if they start digging for him. Vic suggests a passive search. Julien didn't see any sign of Hernan at his girlfriend's. Ronnie jokes it wasn't a total waste of time: "She does yoga in the nude with the blinds open." "That really worries me, Hernan not showing up at home for that," says Vic. They should talk to the Byz Lats.
Kevin reports the truce is shaky at best. Hernan could've gotten caught in the crossfire. Kevin thinks Shane could ride with Vic and talk to Santi. Ronnie makes up a story that Shane has a troubled history with the Byz Lats; they won't open up around him. Kevin says he and Julien will cover the Salvadoran angle.
Outside, Ronnie quietly tells Vic he can't forgive Shane, but they can't let anyone else know the truth. Vic just can't stand listening to Shane "play offa Lem's murder like he's tryin' to solve it." Ronnie says Vic needs to keep his anger in check.
We see someone has vandalized one of the recruitment billboards featuring Tina. Gang members whistle to each other as Vic pulls up, a signal of some sort, no doubt. "Thought I smelled bacon," one wisecracks. The Byz Lats won't honor the truce because Vic tried to play them. However, even they know better than to mess with an undercover fed. That part they're leaving up to the Salvadorans.
"You need a new Ouija board 'cause you're channeling some bad intel," sasses Ronnie. Santi again accuses Vic of double-crossing him. Vic takes a call and gets back in the car with Ronnie. Someone found a body and they're both worried it could be Hernan.
At the crime scene, a uniform describes the murder victim as a Hispanic male between 20 and 30, sporting Salvadoran gang ink. The body was cut up and there's no ID. Kevin peeks in one of the trash bags, but it's not Hernan. Ronnie points out, "Doesn't mean they're not goin' through the ranks 'til they find him."
In the observation room, a father informs Vic that his son lied to the police about witnessing the body dump because he'd been dating an underage girl. The son argues, "I thought she was 18 until she invited me to her quinceanera." (For those that don't know, that's an elaborate birthday party, held in many Latin cultures when a girl turns 15).
Anyway, Tricia's parents were out, so they were having sex. She was on top, looked out the window, and saw a dark green Camaro pull into the alley. A guy got out and left some trash bags behind. The kid describes the suspect as a "vato, just a regular dude. The license plate was 1-B-J-something." He's sure about that because "that's what I told [Tricia] I needed." Vic is not amused.
Daughter K reports her dad is concerned about the gas station murder. "His concern doesn't help me one goddamn bit," says Shane. She gives him an envelope full of money and asks for a favor. "Doing favors for you people is how I got my ass in this sling," he says. Need I remind you that you wouldn't need favors to get out of the country had you not murdered your friend in cold blood?
Daughter K and daddy own a few apartment buildings that have been robbed; the police haven't been helpful. "Might have somethin' to do with the property owner's last name," Shane speculates. Daughter K is having trouble finding tenants and nobody in their right mind will buy the building if she sells. Will Shane help her figured out who's behind the robberies? Shane answers with another question: "Are you a mob daughter or a damsel in distress?" He'll look into it, but only if he gets paid.
At the Barn, Shane uses the one and only computer to look up reports on the addresses. One of them was filed by Tina and Julien. She remembers there was a noise complaint called in by neighbors. The Russian girls in the apartment claimed it was due to someone's drunk ex-boyfriend. Nothing was stolen, but Tina found the ex-girlfriend suspicious. She answered the door wearing fishnets and garters in the middle of the day.
Vic found five matches to the partial license plate Tricia saw. One is registered to Hernan's girlfriend Leticia. They can't put out an APB due to Hernan's undercover status. Ronnie asks how to spin it if Hernan was the person dumping the body. Vic doesn't want to worry about that until they have to.
Shane buzzes an apartment, claiming he's Matthew from the airport. "Who are you here to see?" asks a woman's voice. Shane pours on the Southern charm: "Well, after hearin' that sexy voice, I'm hopin' it's you, darlin'." The girl buzzes him in. She opens the door in a silk bathrobe embroidered with dragons.
The first thing she asks is: "Are you a police officer?" Shane dodges that by complimenting her sexy Russian accent. Once they're in the bedroom, she immediately tells Shane to whip it out. He's all too happy to oblige. The woman inquires if he wants a full hour. Shane shrugs that he's not in a hurry.
Russian wants $300 up front "for time and companionship only." She's definitely had run-ins for prostitution before. She's about to tear open a condom wrapper with her teeth when Shane flashes his badge and announces she's under arrest. Russian doesn't think so: "You let me touch your dick; that's entrapment. I know the law." Shane points out it's her word against his: "Zip me back up and put your hands behind your back."
Elsewhere, Danny consoles a woman who's been stabbed. A male passerby whistles at Tina and says he recognizes her from the billboards. Billings arrives to get the victim's statement. Danny informs him the woman's asked for a lawyer. Odd behavior after being stabbed. The victim tells the medics to take her to Cedars-Sinai. Billings gripes about entitled assholes. Tina chirps that she needs a Sharpie to sign an autograph for her admirer.
An Asian shop owner says she "no see nothing," even though the attack happened steps away. She won't let Dutch in without a warrant.
Ronnie and Vic roll out to meet Julien and Kevin at the Camaro. Hernan or Leticia will eventually come back for it. Ronnie asks what Vic's game plan is when Shane starts unraveling. Vic tells Ronnie about the file Shane put together; he knows Ronnie is mentioned in it by name. Vic burned his copy. Problem is, Mara knows about everything too.
Vic gets a text that says "Shitters' Alley. Right now," which he figures is from Hernan. He's going there solo. Ronnie will stay and keep an eye on the Camaro. In the alley, Vic finds Hernan's girlfriend. Leticia says it was too dangerous for Hernan to come.
Vic pulls his gun and threatens her: "If you're lyin' to me or pullin' any tricks, your own mother won't recognize you when I'm through." Leticia whimpers that Vic's hurting her and swears Hernan sent her. She has a message: Hernan is robbing a gun store tonight on Alvarado near the park at 6:00 sharp; Vic needs to let it happen but rescue the innocents. Leticia knows Hernan is a cop and hasn't told anyone else.
Vic asks about the dead body in the alley. Leticia insists Hernan had no choice; Octavio executed the guy for being a snitch. Vic has a message of his own: Hernan needs to contact his bosses in D.C. and leave the Camaro where it is. He'll hide instructions for Hernan in one of the wheel wells.
Shane lets Russian know he isn't interested in her hooking. If she tells him what happened at her house two weeks ago, "you streetwalk outta here a free woman." Russian got robbed for $2,500 by a guy who came for "an appointment." She describes him as a white "like a regular business john." Three black men arrived instead, threatening to shoot her and her roommate if they looked at them.
Russian and her fellow hookers have been working lots of overtime to prevent their pimp from finding out about the robbery. Can she leave now? She has a client that likes golden showers and she needs to drink iced tea to get the right, um, flavor. Shane chuckles: "I'll be right back with those mug books and a Snapple."
Vic believes Leticia when she says Hernan's alive, but Claudette is skeptical. Kevin doesn't want to risk blowing Hernan's cover. "Screw his cover," she says bluntly. They're under orders to notify ICE of any contact. Kevin pleads that getting them involved will "FUBAR the whole thing." Claudette tells them to get Shane out of the interrogation room. He's up there with a prostitute and "I don't want him freelancing for Vice while he's still under my command."
Vic catches Kevin by the elbow; they need to protect Claudette from herself. They should find Hernan and then turn him over to ICE. Kevin worries about disobeying the captain. Vic says they don't make cases by listening to upper management. If they play their cards right, they can protect Hernan while keeping guns out of bad guys' hands.
At the ER, Dutch and Billings are met by stabbing victim Eleanor's lawyer. He's promised his client immunity if she's honest with the police. Eleanor admits to buying three replicas, which Billings instantly recognizes as a euphemism for knockoff handbags. "Nurses here do it all the time," defends Corinne.
Someone stabbed Eleanor today and pushed her down. "So you lost the three purses you bought and the two you had with you?" asks Dutch. Eleanor sharply tells him, "They're not purses! Two were evening clutches. The other was a keepall." She describes her attacker as a bad-smelling Hispanic man. Dutch guesses the thief thought the knockoffs were real. "Knockoffs are what they sell in Times Square," Eleanor says prissily, "These are quality replicas."
Corinne heard the replicas in that neighborhood are so good you can't tell the difference. Tina nods that it's all about good weight, stitching, and hardware; she favors Marc Jacobs. Corinne likes Gucci, but she'll never be able to afford the real thing with her salary. I don't know about L.A., but registered nurses in my home state of Kentucky can make bank depending on the hospital.
Danny can't relate; Lee's diaper bag came from Old Navy. Surprisingly, Corinne doesn't say anything catty. She agrees that they're stylish.
As Shane comes into the clubhouse, Kevin explains about the gun store robbery they're allowing to happen. Vic has assigned Danny and Tina to a checkpoint; the Strike Team's first priority is watching the girls' backs in case of something. They have to be ready for anything because Hernan could go off-script.
Vic and Ronnie watch the green Camaro park by a dumpster. Hernan, ski mask over his face, walks point into the gun store. Julien is already inside posing as a security guard. Someone puts a gun to his head and takes his car keys while the others grab assault rifles off the shelves. The robbery takes less than a minute.
Kevin tails the Camaro in his unmarked car, guiding them right to Danny. She plays the stop off as a routine insurance checkpoint. Vic knows the registration is expired and wonders what the gangbangers will do: "Go for it and pray nobody pops the trunk? Or risk going away for a few decades?"
Hernan's passengers get out of the backseat, run across the road, and carjack a Jeep. Shane isn't fast enough to stop them. Vic assures Danny they have everything under control.
Edgar-veda questions why he should join the exploratory committee instead of outright announcing his candidacy for mayor. A fellow councilman explains an announcement would trigger financial scrutiny. Who are his supporters? How much are they contributing? Exploratory Committee also gives him the chance to check out other avenues, such as running for state assemblyman.
His campaign advisor suggests pushing through redistricting. Koreans are a big part of Farmington and less likely to vote for a Democratic candidate. Blacks don't support Edgar-veda either, but they also don't go out and vote. He can stock the pond with Latino citizens.
In the hall, Edgar-veda's construction company friend gives him a check. Edgar-veda asks why it's only $100,000. His friend promises the rest when the San Marcos case is closed.
Dutch thinks they should've denied Eleanor's immunity and arrested her. Claudette is more interested in finding the purse snatcher than trademark infringement. Billings bucks for a raid at the purse shop, which attracts "upscale clientele to a shitty neighborhood." More stabbings (or worse) could happen.
Claudette agrees, only because she doesn't want a "pampered socialite breathing down [my] neck. That's what I have Aceveda for." Speak of the devil and he appears. He wants to know if Claudette needs more resources to solve the San Marcos case. She doesn't want to give him information after what happened with Hernan. Edgar-veda is shocked, just shocked that she'd think he's a mole.
In the Barn's parking lot, Kevin shows off the gun haul in the Camaro's trunk. Claudette is none too pleased that Hernan is MIA again and that the other two got away. Kevin explains he made a judgment call; the guns could've been used against the Strike Team if they'd rushed the store. Vic is confident Hernan and friends will turn up.
Claudette asks about the unauthorized phony insurance checkpoint. She's sure Vic or Kevin signed off on it and can't believe they put uniforms in harm's way. "'Harm's way' is part of the job description," Kevin says coolly. Claudette thought she could trust Kevin, but he's turning out to be another Vic.
Kevin reminds her the Barn is in serious jeopardy if the San Marcos case goes unsolved. Claudette warns that he could end up following Vic out the door.
Shane stops to visit a site where parolees are picking up trash. Juneteenth, a pimp, is of special interest. Shane knows the pimps sit on the Russian girls' passports so they can't leave the States. He also knows about the robberies and assaults. Juneteenth laughs, "You can't prove shit." Shane whips off his sunglasses, Horatio Caine style, and says, "Try me."
He offers to run interference so Juneteenth can keep doing what he's doing...in exchange for a small cut of the profits, of course. Juneteenth would have to discuss that with his business partners. Shane inquires, "You mean Pancake and Squeeze?" Juneteenth is surprised Shane knew that.
Shane's next stop is Kesakhian's hospital room: "When you said your father was travelin', I didn't think you meant the highway to heaven." Kesakhian was brought in DOA by an ambulance 11 days ago; the nurses don't expect him to last another week. Daughter K has been praying for a miracle. She can't stand to see her father's crime empire "torn apart by snakes and vultures."
Shane knows people are already freelancing behind her back. The daughter asks if she can count on Shane. That'd be a no; she lied to him. However, he also knows "a nice choir girl like you" doesn't want any part of the havoc Margos will wreak. Shane gives her the names of the pimps, reminding her she has bigger problems.
Danny is impressed by Eleanor's memory of her attacker; the sketch is pretty detailed. Billings suggests canvassing Skid Row first. Dutch doesn't get it: "This woman could have anything she wants. Is saving a few bucks worth a couple stab wounds?" "When it comes to Louis, Gucci, and Fendi," says Tina. Danny adds, "Coach, Prada, Chanel." Eleanor must get a thrill when her friends that pay full price on Rodeo Drive mistake her knockoffs for the real thing.
"Are they hearing themselves?" asks Dutch. Are you forgetting you once strangled a cat to see what it would feel like? Judge not lest ye be judged, Dutch Boy.
Hernan has sent Vic another text, asking to meet tonight. Kevin thinks his intel better be worth it "after the ass-reaming I just took." He wants to round up the team, but Vic says he and Ronnie can handle it. He promises to remain civil as long as Shane stays with the team. Kevin wishes Vic could stick around too. However: "You're a done deal. Claudette's been playing you since the day I showed up." Kevin is sorry and wishes he could do something.
Vic shrugs off the apology. He's got time until his hearing. Plus, Claudette isn't the only person at the table. He leaves Kevin to ponder exactly what that means.
In the break room, Billings and Dutch continue to express their mystification about women and purses. "Get a lunchbox. Whack a mugger with one of those, at least you'll draw some blood," says Billings. Shane agrees, "Chicks are nuts." Well, you'd know; you married Mara.
Claudette comes in with a report. Juneteenth the pimp was found castrated in an alley. Billings bets Juneteenth's ex is carrying his family jewels in her "knockoff Louis Vuitton." "Paid for with his money," says Dutch, ever the cynic. A live castration victim is in the ER at Mission Cross. Claudette snarks, "Missing bags maybe you boys can relate to."
People in the squadroom applaud as Danny and Tina bring in the smelly purse snatcher. He threw "homemade shit balls" at the girls before they hauled him out of the sewer. Dutch gallantly offers to take the suspect to booking. Danny shakes her head: "Don't deny me the pleasure of throwing his skanky ass into the cage."
Puffing on a cigarette, Shane suggests he and Ronnie hit a dive bar for a few beers. Ronnie acts like he didn't hear a thing. "What? I extend an invite, you throw shade?" asks Shane. Ronnie turns around, walks right up to Shane, and says, "I know what you did to Lem."
Shane doesn't want to fight him; they don't have a beef. Ronnie begs to differ. He knows Shane is trying to blackmail him and Vic. Shane doesn't deny he wrote a 24-page journal. (Everything the guys pulled and it's that short?) They tensely wait for a uniform to pass before continuing the conversation.
"Why don't you ask Vic to show you page one?" asks Shane. Ronnie can't because Vic burned it. Shane bets he knows why; the first paragraph is all about how Vic killed Terry while he watched. "I've been lying, covering up, bleeding out of my goddamn anus for three years trying to protect him." (Wrong again. Lem was the one bleeding, puking blood, actually, thanks to your shenanigans).
If Ronnie gets tired of Vic leading him around by a leash, he should call Shane and get the whole ugly truth. Ronnie's jaw twitches.
In their street clothes, Tina and Corinne head for the knockoff emporium. Tina knows they have a limited window before the place gets shut down. The store turns out to be the one closest to where Eleanor was stabbed.
Tina asks the owner about Fendi clutches. The woman unlocks a back room that she told Dutch earlier she didn't have a key for. She leads them through a maze of locked gates and upstairs. "I'm not sure about this," Corinne says uneasily. Tina tells her to think happy designer purse thoughts. And don't worry, she has her gun.
Tina suddenly laughs. Danny, buying a knockoff diaper bag, gives her coworker a guilty stare but thinks she and Tina deserve purses after the day they've had. Corinne's wasn't much better; her shift began with a meth head puking on her. Another salesgirl tells Danny to come back next week when they get new Prada.
Vic climbs back in the car with Ronnie. Hernan didn't come to the meeting. Leticia told Vic something big is coming but didn't get specific. She just knows the Byz Lats and Salvadorans are negotiating tomorrow. Hernan is flying to El Salvador and Leticia has no clue when he'll be back. Meaning they went through the gun shop sting for no reason.
"Why would he jerk us off like that?" Ronnie wonders. Vic guesses they sent Hernan south until things calm down. Hell, Hernan probably framed the latest murder victim as a snitch to draw suspicion away from himself. Vic takes it further: "Hernan didn't just set this guy up. He did the chopping."
Ronnie looks unsettled, but reckons the dead guy got what was coming. "But Hernan's gotta live with what he did now," says Vic. Ronnie pipes up with "No different than why you shot Terry." Vic supposes Ronnie got that from Shane. Ronnie shocks the hell out of me by saying, "Page one of Shane's memoirs wasn't exactly new information." Fortunately, Shane can't prove it.
Ronnie wishes Vic had been honest with him from the start. He asks when they can leave all this shit in the past. Vic doesn't answer.
Shane watches Daughter K pray in the otherwise empty church. He knows she castrated the pimps. "It was maybe too much?" she asks. Shane drawls, "I'm certain you got your point across." She gives Shane more money, along with the names and addresses of the men who killed the gas station owner. They're willing to confess. Shane doubts it could be that easy.
Daughter K nods that they'll talk to protect their wives and families: "Armenian way, they suffer first." Shane knows it won't take long for Rezian to figure out Daughter K is running the show. She's not ready for him to come after her. "Just 'cause your father was in the life doesn't mean you have to be Daddy's little gangster."
Daughter argues her dad is a survivor. He used to teach her about history every night at dinner. Everything was taken from Armenians "and he taught me to never let that happen to us again." Well, other than that whole money train thing a few years back, right? People are still loyal to her dad and now she has Shane. End of episode.