Three Europeans, Hans, Soledad and Yuri, prepare for a jewelry heist. Hans, Yuri and Soledad are all Shakals, or Grimm jackal creatures. Meanwhile, an old man named Sam closes up his jewelry shop for the night. Sam carries his valuable items to a walk-in vault in the back as the front door of the shop smashes open. Sam sees the robbers coming and pulls the vault door shut just in time.
Hearing a drill at the door, Sam knows he doesn't have much time left. His attention turns to his most valuable item: a small box on a shelf. He opens the box to find three ancient, well-worn gold coins fitted neatly inside. Sam stares at them for a moment, and then, one by one, he swallows them! A huge explosion bursts open the door and shatters the glass, sending hundreds shards into Sam's face and body. Later, Nick and Hank arrive at the crime scene to find Sam's mangled body and an expert break-in; these criminals definitely knew what they were doing.
Meanwhile, the robbers arrive back at their base to discover that the coins they were searching for are nowhere to be found amongst their spoils. The three immediately turn on each other, claiming that someone secretly snatched the coins on site. Frustrated, Soledad leaves, while Hans and Yuri's heated argument turns violent, as the two draw their guns. During their standoff, a third, unknown figure appears in the mix, and the three creep quietly around the house, guns drawn. In the midst of the chaos, Yuri and Hans end up shooting each other, leaving an unknown man and hawk-like Grimm creature (Steinadler) standing over their dead bodies.
Harper reports back to Nick and Hank with an interesting find from Sam's body. She reveals the three coins she discovered inside of Sam; they must be pretty valuable if he swallowed them. Hank anxiously collects the coins for evidence, and Harper is strangely upset to see them go. Later, Nick and Hank track the car found in footage from the crime scene to the criminal hideout. They find the two dead robbers, in addition to Farley Holt, the hawk-like creature. Nick sees him transform and arrests Farley, bringing him into the station for questioning.
It seems that the longer Hank holds onto the coins, the more worked up he gets. Hank roughs up Farley a little too much and is extremely resistant to handing over the coins to Captain Renard. Nick notices Hank's angry behavior and tells Hank to take the rest of the day off and head home to cool off. Meanwhile, the captain feels the power of the coins, examining them proudly. He calls an unknown associate, explaining that the famous Coins of Zakynthos just came across his desk.Farley, well aware that Nick's a Grimm, is a cooperative witness and explains the situation. The coins that the robbers were after are the Coins of Zakynthos, which were mined on the island of Zakynthos in ancient Greece in 8th century B.C. Certain coins struck from that mine were stamped with a swastika on one side, signifying good fortune, and a lion on the other, symbolizing power and wealth. The coins seem to give whoever holds them a charismatic influence over all other men. As the Greek Empire fell, the coins found their way to the Romans, and from there made their way into China and the Han Dynasty. Then they disappeared for several centuries until they finally reappeared in the Third Reich.
After the war, the coins disappeared again; only a handful of people knew their whereabouts. Those people were Nick's ancestors, who have taken great care to hide the coins. But the Grimm who had the coins was killed 18 years ago, sending them back into circulation. The Grimm in question was the sister of the woman Farley was in love with; she left him in order to raise her sister's son. Nick silently makes the connection that the woman who was killed was likely his mother, and the woman Farley loved his aunt.
Because the book entries are in German, Nick recruits Monroe to do a bit of translating late at night in Aunt Marie's trailer. Nick learns about Shakals and Steinadlers; Shakals are ruthless killers, while Steinadlers are often involved with the military. Apparently, in the case of Steinadlers, it's hard to tell whose side they're on. While in the trailer, Monroe comes across an old movie projector and video camera, and Monroe's impressed by these valuable antiques. What use Aunt Marie had for them remains unknown.
The captain is completely taken over by the power of the coins and has a vivid fantasy of himself greeting cheering throngs of people as their powerful leader. He shows up to work in full officer garb the following day and announces that he's holding a press conference on the present state of law enforcement. The speech is grandiose and impressive and viewed by the media as the potential jumping off point for a promising political career.
With Soledad still at large, Nick and Hank investigate his last known whereabouts: a hotel room. While their suspect is no where to be found, they do find some incriminating documentation that describes the coins as unsafe for handling, as they contain mercury and other dangerous chemicals. Hank cites that perhaps that explains his erratic behavior, as well as that of the captain. When Nick can't find the coins in evidence, the two are sure that the captain has been keeping the coins on hand. Meanwhile, Soledad, disguised as an officer, continues to do everything in his power to get his hands on those coins.
Since Farley's been cleared, Nick and Hank recruit him to help track down Soledad. They follow Soledad to a parking garage where he attacks the captain, knocking him to the ground. Nick and Hank shoot Soledad, and his dying words beg Nick to let him hold the coins just one more time. Meanwhile, the captain regains consciousness, and he anxiously searches his pockets for the coins, only to find them missing.
Later, Nick confronts Farley in his hotel room, gun drawn. He tells Farley to put the coins on the dresser and slowly step away. Farley lunges for him, but Nick is ready. He hits Farley hard with his gun and recovers the coins, telling Farley to forget about the coins forever.