In the hospital, Crews is recovering from being shot. Reese says they've gotten nowhere. Ballistics are clean and the shooter left in a stolen car that they later found wiped clean. Reese wonders why Crews can't remember who did it since he was looking right at the person. Later, the doctor gives Crews the bullet that was taken from his chest. She says most people wouldn't want the bullet that shot them. Crews says, "Someone gave it to me. It would be rude to just throw it away."
Cleared to return to duty, Crews and Reese go to their first crime scene. They arrive in a neighborhood where a pilot William Ellis landed his plane in the middle of the road. He sits in the cockpit, dead of a gunshot wound to the side. Witnesses said he landed, looked at them and then died. No one else was in the plane and there's no gun. Reese and Crews ponder whether he was shot in the air or after he landed. And, if he shot himself or someone shot him and then parachuted out. Both think he looks familiar, but can't place why.
At the station, Reese and Crews brief Tidwell about William Ellis, a space shuttle pilot who became rich after he retired from NASA and started a company that makes rocket engine parts. A three-time space traveler, he was going to pay the Russians $35 million to take him back into space. Tidwell asks Crews about not being able to remember who shot him. He thinks Crews is holding back and says he isn't buying his story. Crews swears there's just a blank space when he tries to remember who shot him.
At Ellis Propulsions, Reese and Crews interview Dean, Ellis's son who works for his dad's company. He says his dad planned to fly for a couple hours then wanted to see him in the office. He can't think of anyone who would want to hurt him. Everyone loved him, including the President who called to say "the nation lost a shining light." When asked where he was this morning, he says he was with friends from work. He says his dad planned to sell the company for a lot of money, which would pay for his trip back into space.
They interview Mick Bream, Bill's old navy buddy. They trained, flew and joined NASA together. Though he's a flyer, not a businessman, Bream joined the company because "Bull" asked him to. Crews asks if Bill could have committed suicide. Bream admits getting older is especially hard on flyboys, but Bill was going back to space so it doesn't make sense. Crews asks Bream what it's like in space. Bream says, "Like going back where I came from." Bream, who was fishing in Castaic this morning, says Bill planned to sell the company for $30 million and use his entire savings to fund the rest of his space trip.
They go back to talk to Dean and learn he's part of a work group that flies model airplanes in the desert, not the real thing. They compare Bill, who flew rockets to Dean, who flies model airplanes as well as their positions in the company. Crews thinks Dean's alibi sounded rehearsed. If his dad sold the company, Dean is left with nothing. They learn from Bream that the position that Dean described -- Expended Resource Control and Distribution, is just a fancy title for waste removal. Bream adds that he paid Dean minimum wage, too. Said he had to start from the bottom.
Crews and Reese stake out Dean's home and see the geek squad arrive. They see that Dean is also selling something from his front door to drive by customers. They bust down the door and see the group in protective suits standing around a yellow cube of a gelatin-like substance. The kids aren't talking without lawyers, and even HAZMAT doesn't know what it is. Crews points out the customers all drove race cars, and much to the HAZMAT guy's dislike, cuts a small piece off and sets it on fire outside. It flames up like a rocket booster.
In prison, Ted teaches scarcity of resources in business to his fellow prisoners. One of the big guys offers encouragement. He says that Charlie Crews says for him to hang tough. It won't be that much longer.
At the station, Crews and Reese interrogate Dean about selling solid rocket fuel to street racers. Reese adds that Dean needs security clearance to have it. They goad him by talking up his dad's "manly" achievements and compare them to his meager ones. Maybe he was selling rocket fuel to feel cool. They ask if Bill found out and that's what he wanted to talk to him about. Dean admits to selling rocket fuel in Pomona during the time of his father's death. He flirted with the waitress. "Ask her, she'll remember," he says, and denies killing his father.
Crews and Reese break Dean down and learn that because he didn't fly, his father never talked to him man-to-man. Dean was afraid of heights. They wonder if he knows who killed his father. Dean says a year ago his dad changed, spending way too much time alone in his plane. Dean was terrified he would take his life in space. Bream confirms the change. He says a year ago, Bill, an avid climber, returned from K2 and never climbed again. Crews finds a Buddhist mourning flag wrapped around Bill's climbing pick. Bream says Evan Tucker, his climbing buddy, returned alive. So, who died on the trip?
Tidwell calls a meeting with Stark and Reese to discuss Crews clamming up about who shot him. He asks why Crews would keep that to himself. At home, Crews melts the bullet taken from his body and makes a new one, clearly with someone's name on it. Crews and Reese tell Tidwell that Bill climbed K2 with Evan Tucker and both returned alive. Evan, a manager at Sporting Mart, befriended Bill on the adventure circuit. Reese says the K2 Base Camp Station reported no fatalities during the time Bill and Evan were there. Tidwell wants them to find out who didn't come down from the mountain.
After several phone calls, they learn that Tucker has been on a camping trip for a week. Backwoods, no phones. At the station, Tucker's wife says Bill Ellis killed her husband, but Crews knows she's using figurative speech. At 12,000 feet, Bill and Evan were tethered together when Evan slipped over the edge. He was pulling Bill down, so Bill cut the rope. Evan fell hundreds of feet down. By sheer luck, he was barely injured, but never recovered psychologically. Alone with her kids at the time of the murder, she doesn't think Evan could have killed Bill, but is glad someone did.
Reese learns from the assistant manager at Evan's store, that after Evan returned from K2 he lost interest in extreme sports except for skydiving. His credit cards reveal that since last year, he's made several trips to Paris, California, skydiving capitol of the world. During lunch, Ted teaches his prison mates about debt. He asks for examples of debt. The prisoner who tried to bully Ted when he first arrived says Ted owes him a beating but his babysitters won't let him collect. It's enough for Ted, who rises to the bait. He assures his protectors that the guards will break it up. "Not quick enough," one of them worries.
At the skydiving center, Reese and Crews talk to a man who's readying for a jump. He says Evan's on a jump, adding that Evan is fearless and as good as any of the instructors. They look at a jump chart and learn that Evan was pulling the cord later and later in his jumps, the last as low as three-thousand feet. They find Evan's chute, still packed, and realize that he's the man they were talking to. As they arrest him, Evan shouts, "It's time for me to fall!" Crews finds the Buddhist mourning flag in Evan's jump pack. The only thing he planned to take on his jump.
Crews goes to Agent Bodner's house and says, "Got something that belongs to you," He shoots him in the leg with his bullet. At gunpoint, he tells him to make the call that sets Ed free. Crews is perturbed when Bodner just has to text the order in, not call it. Crews learns that Roman got him to shoot Crews after he threatened his family. Bodner came home one day to find Roman having tea with his wife and bouncing his daughter on his knee, so he sent them away. Crews tells Bodner to call him after his leg heals, and not to throw the bullet away.
Reese and Crews show Evan the murder weapon that they found in his hotel room. They ask if he killed Bill because he cut the rope. Then, planned to kill himself today. Evan says that Bill showed him the face of God. And, that Bill didn't want to cut the rope. He had to beg him to do it after he went over. Crews realizes Evan doesn't hate Bill. Evan says Bill isn't dead, but went back where he came from. Crews says that's exactly what Bream said about space. Later, Crews checks with NASA, who says Bream never went into space.
After learning that Bill left the company to Bream, they tell Dean, who is surprised but not that upset about it. Dean asks if Bream killed his father. At the station, Crews gets Tucker to set up a mock cockpit to get in Ellis's headspace. Therefore, teach them how Bream could have killed a man mid-flight. Evan says Ellis would have considered it a mission and trained for it. After sending Bream's picture around to airfields, they track down a charter pilot in Nevada that Bream, under a fake name, hired to practice jumps. That name revealed a gun purchase in Nevada. The gun he planted on Evan.
After the arrest, Reese asks him if he remembers anything else about being shot. Crews reads what she's getting at, and says he remembers her asking him if her father was responsible for Crews going to jail. He asks if she still wants the answer. She does. He gives her the answer: Her father, Jack Reese, wasn't responsible. Later, Crews picks a bruised Ted up from prison. Ted wants to get out of there, fast. No problem, because Crews has fed his Maserati a dose of Dean's rocket fuel.