Season 1 Episode 10

Slack Water

Aired Thursday 10:00 PM May 03, 2012 on NBC

Episode Recap

Reality 1

Michael informs Hannah that Emma is bearing their dead son's child, and Hannah wonders why Rex never said anything to her. She also is puzzled that Michael knows about it, but he ducks the question and they discuss what Emma's plans. Michael admits that he doesn't know and Hannah insists on talking to the girl and figuring out how they'll be involved.

Reality 2

Michael and Bird are called to a bad neighborhood to the fatal shooting of a drug dealer, Dion Driggs, in his apartment. All the signs indicate that the killer burst in to Driggs' apartment, shot him, and stole his computer, gamebox, and drugs. The killer also then went down the hallway and met another resident, Maya King, and shot her dead as well. The landlord, Curtis Wilson, shows them May's apartment and explains that she and her husband had been there for fifty years. Their son died in Vietnam and her husband died two years ago, but Maya insisted on staying despite the fact it's a bad neighborhood that even Wilson doesn't live in. Michael and Bird start canvassing the area and Bird says that some people just need to learn when to move on.

Reality 1

At the station, Vega agrees to Michael's request that no one throw him a goodbye party as he moves on, and thanks him for everything that he's taught him in the last few months. Harper comes in to tell them that a cocaine and arms dealer, Simpson Trujillo, is back in Los Angeles. Trujillo is one of Michael's old cases and he's eager to close it up, but she reminds him that he'll be leaving in a few days and has Vega work with the Federal task force.

When Harper comes home that night, she finds her contact Carl waiting for her. She assures him that Michael will be gone in three days, but Carl points out that the heroin they're shipping is oxidizing and they've had to keep it ever since Michael's "accident" five months ago. His distributors are getting impatient, and Carl informs Harper that he'll give Michael three more days before he disposes of him.

Michael and Hannah meet with Emma's parents, Angela and Joaquin. Emma comes in and Hannah talks to the girl for the first time, bonding over their love for Rex. The Britten offer to do everything they can for the baby, but Emma's parents tell them that their family has already decided on a closed adoption. Hannah suggests that they adopt the baby, since they're moving to Portland and Emma will still be cut off from her child. Joaquin and his wife refuse, saying that Emma made the decision and they'll honor it. Hannah isn't convinced and says as much to Michael as they drive away. Michael didn't pick up Emma's supposed doubts and warns his wife that she might be seeing something that she wants to be there, but Hannah insists that Emma's parents are pushing her into the adoption against her wishes.

Reality 2

Michael and Bird track down the stolen laptop and gamebox to a pawnshop and the owner provides the address and description of the man, Perry Jenkins. It turns how that Perry had to move out several months ago and is now living on the streets, and the detectives track him down and are forced to chase him. They quickly capture him but he insists that he had nothing to do with the murder and found the electronic goods in a dumpster. Michael and Bird end up going through the dumpster and finding the gamebox controller, confirming Perry's story. They realize that it makes no sense for a thief to kill Driggs over his electronics and then throw them away.

Reality 1

Hannah goes to the bookstore where Emma works and apologizes, but then suggests that Emma may not be happy with her parents' decision. Emma rounds on her for making it about herself and says that she's already made her decision and Hannah is wasting her time. Once she gets back to her car, Hannah calls Michael and says she feels like an idiot. When she wonders how misinterpreted Emma's feelings, Michael repeats what he said earlier about imagining things one wants. Hannah agrees and thanks him for being there for her.

Back at the station, Michael watches with the other detectives as Vega's big arrest is shown on the news. As Michael offers Vega his congratulations, he notices that the house where Trujillo was holed up looks just like a house on the cover on one of Driggs' video games.

Reality 2

Michael gets the gamebox out of evidence and has Len the tech help set it up. When he and Bird turn on the game, Driggs' fellow player SVENgali69 from Sweden tries to contact his friend. He explains that he and Driggs were playing when Driggs heard a gunshot, paused the game, and went to investigate. The detectives realize that puts a different light on the case since it means the killer disposed of Maya first. They figure that the killer killed Driggs when he came to investigate and that Maya is the significant victim. They go to a retirement home to visit Miss Pearl, one of the former apartment residents and a friend of Maya's. She mistakes Bird for her errant grandson but Michael convinces her that her "son" is helping the police. Pearl tells them that Myra refused to stay when all of the older residents moved to the same retirement home. When Michael wonders how they all ended up there, Pearl tells them that Wilson is paying all of their expenses. May was the only one who refused.

When the detectives return to the station, Michael confirms that Wilson owns the blocks and has been receiving buy offers for years on the $10 million property. Since all of the residents were on rent control, he couldn't sell the apartment building without their permission. They figure that Wilson hired someone to kill Maya, the only holdout, and that Driggs got in the way. Bird and Michael start checking Wilson's records to tie him to the shooter.

Reality 1

Michael and Harper chat as he cleans out his desk, and they remember when they first met in a sensitivity He tells her that he always felt she had his back, and they both admit they'll miss each other.

Reality 2

Michael and Bird find two calls to Wilson immediately before and after the shooting, and get the address. The resident is a parolee named Milo Owens, who has a long criminal history. They take a squad and break in, easily capturing Milo. They find a gun and drugs hidden in the apartment and Milo him into interrogation, where they tell him they want the guy who hired him to kill Maya. Milo gives up Wilson but admits that he doesn't have any proof because they always meet face-to-face, and Michael says Milo will have to help them in a sting operation.

First the detectives have Milo call Wilson and have him ask for more money. Wilson refuses to discuss it over the phone and gives Milo an address to meet. They have Milo agree to the meet and tell Wilson that he needs more money to buy drugs. Milo actually is starting to crash and Bird worries that he could mess up the deal, but Michael figures that Milo's desperation will sell the sting.

At the park, Wilson meets Milo, who rambles on and is clearly strung out. When Wilson suspects that Milo is wearing a wire, Milo accuses him of trying to tape him confessing and gets in his face. Disgusted, Wilson admits that he should never have hired a junkie to kill Maya. Michael and his men move in and Wilson makes a belated effort to escape.

Reality 1

Emma arrives at the Brittens' doorstep and admits that she wants to keep the baby. She explains that her parents pressured her into giving up the child and wouldn't stop. When Emma finally said no, they freaked and ordered her out of the house if she wouldn't follow their rules. Hannah assures the teenager that her parents will come around eventually and that they're there for her no matter what. Emma asks for some time alone and goes up to take a bath, crying.

After talking to Joaquin, Michael tells Hannah that Emma's parents believe they manipulated her into keeping the baby. All they will do is bring a suitcase of Emma's clothing over, and Michael figures that they're just trying to scare her. Hannah worries that she made a mistake by interfering but Michael assures her that she was the only one who realized what Emma wanted, and that the girl is where she needs to be. Realizing that they can't abandon their daughter-in-law and their grandchild, Hannah says she'll get the movers back while Michael cancels his resignation. He says that he was supposed to watch a game at the bar with the guys that night, and she sheepishly admits that Vega planned a surprise goodbye party after all.

That night, Michael and Hannah go to the bar and everyone yells surprise. Michael plays along and talks to Harper privately, telling her that they're not going to Portland after all. He explains what is happening with Emma and his grandchild, and assures Harper that he has no immediate plans to leave Los Angeles.

Later, Michael and Hannah return home and find Emma sitting on the couch watching TV. They start to go upstairs but realize that she wants company and sit down to watch TV and share pizza with her.