Dean, armed and ready, makes his way through a darkened factory. Castiel sneaks up on him and knocks him to the Ground. When dean tries to fight back, Castiel breaks his arm and then plunges a knife into his chest. Naomi turns on the lights and steps forward, and congratulates Castiel on efficiently killing Dean. She tells her fellow angel that he's ready and then glances around at the dozens of Dean corpses lying on the floor.
At the Letters headquarters, Dean is going through the weapon collections while Sam is going over maps of the U.S. and checking the Internet. As he works, Sam coughs briefly and spits some blood into a tissue. He tells Dean that it's nothing and tells his brother that he's turned up a series of murders where the victims were burned and their organs liquefied. None of the victims have any connection to each other and Sam figures that they should look into it. As Sam goes to get their equipment, Dean notices the discarded tissue.
The brothers visit Mr. Morton, the husband of the most recent victim. He explains that something happened to his wife Ann and she started acting strongly. Ann made a model town in the couple's basement and started talking about orchards. One night Mr. Morton followed his wife to the local schoolyard and saw her digging up dirt, which she then brought back and hung in a bag above the model. When he confronted her, he discovered that she was talking to someone on the phone. Her eyes turned black and Mr. Morton assumed that he was hallucinating and went to a bar to drink. When he came back, he found Ann's corpse. Mr. Morton, clearly blaming himself, tells the brothers that he's going to go live with his sister for the foreseeable future.
As the leave, Sam and Dean wonder why demons would want to dig dirt, and who is killing them. They make a few calls and confirm that the other victims were acting the same way as Ann. They then go to the Wendy Rice, the woman that Ann was calling on the night that she died. She invites them in and explains that she's a college student and wrote a dissertation on the town before the flood that wiped out much of the town. Ann told Wendy that she was looking for an old orchard and Wendy shows the Winchesters the Jakubiak Orchard on her map. They had an appointment to meet but Ann never arrived. However, Ann's assistant called that morning and asked if she had the same map, and is coming to get it.
There's a knock at the door and Wendy answers it. Three demon men storm in and attack Sam and Dean. Sam has trouble holding his own, while Dean's demon leaves its host body and enters Wendy. The third demon grabs Wendy's map and runs away. Before Dean can help Sam, Castiel teleports in, knocks out Wendy, and kills the demon fighting Sam.
After Castiel seals Wendy in a devil's trap, the brothers ask where he's been and Dean wonders why Castiel didn't respond to his prayer. Castiel explains that he has been off hunting for demons.
In Heaven, Naomi tells Castiel to tell the Winchesters as much as he dares so that they can use them to find the angel tablet.
Castiel tells the Winchesters that he's been looking for the demon tablet and learned that the demons were hunting for a parchment that will let them translate the half that they have. The parchment is sealed in one of Lucifer's Crypts, structures that he left on Earth and were lost over time. Crowley's demons have been possessing locals and seeking out people who have information about the rumored areas. Castiel goes to the kitchen to interrogate Wendy and Sam and Dean realize that something is wrong, and has been since Castiel escaped Purgatory. Sam wonders why Dean was praying to Castiel, but they're interrupted when Castiel calls out to tell them that he can hear them.
In the kitchen, Wendy taunts the Winchesters until Castiel tortures her with an angel blade. She finally admits that they have a hostage, one of Crowley's "pets," and the hostage knows where all of the crypts can be found. Wendy says that they're holding the hostage at a local hotel and Sam asks about the parchment that Castiel mentioned.
Naomi tells Castiel to kill the demon before it can give away that Castiel lied.
Castiel stabs the demon in the chest, killing it, and tells the Winchesters that they need to get to the hotel. When they object, Castiel insists that the demon told them everything it knew and then teleports away.
The Winchesters drive to the hotel and hear the sounds of celestial battle. They follow the noises and find all of the demons dead by Castiel's hand. When the brothers check the next room, they find a bloody and beaten Meg tied up. They free her and she explains that the demons were torturing her for the location of the Crypts, which she learned when she served Lucifer. She managed to stall Crowley's demons by only giving them general locations and claiming that she couldn't remember the specifics. Meg realizes that Castiel was the one killing the demons, but Crowley kept sending more to continue the search.
Castiel asks Naomi if he has to kill Meg. She doesn't like working with an unclean creature but Castiel suggests that they use Meg to find the angel tablet.
Meg tells the trio that Crowley is looking for the angel tablet, much to the brothers' surprise. Castiel claims that he hadn't heard about the angel tablet and the angels lied to him, but Dean isn't convinced. Meg warns them that the surviving demons will soon return and they should flee. Sam and Castiel ask if she'll help and Meg agrees.
Back at the Morton house, Meg examines Ann's model of the town. She can show them where the Crypt was but has no idea how it corresponds to the model. Meg goes to get some booze and Castiel goes with her to wrap her wounds. As they talk, Meg flirts with the angel and asks if he's back to normal. Castiel assures her that he is and that he remembers everything that happened between them.
In the basement, Sam points out that Castiel had good reason to learn since the angel tablet would be a powerful weapon. As Sam checks the online maps and pinpoints the Crypt's location, Dean wonders if they can trust Meg and Castiel, and his brother points out that they don't have a choice.
Meg admits that she misses the Apocalypse when demons were evil and angels were good. She admits that she finds a darker Castiel sexy and suggests that they have sex, and the angel finally works out what she means. However, Sam and Dean come in, interrupting them, and says that it's time to head out.
The demon that fled with the map returns to the hotel room and calls Crowley. As he starts to explain what happened, Crowley teleports in and points out that the demon screwed up, and then kills hm.
When the group arrives at the abandoned building, Dean suggests that Sam stay outside and guard Meg while he goes in with Castiel. Sam objects and Dean tells him that he knows that he's suffering from the effects of the trial. Dean explains that he prayed to Castiel so that he could come and check Sam out, and Castiel tells the Winchesters that he can't heal whatever is affecting Sam. The angel tells Sam to stay outside with Meg and Dean goes in with Castiel. As they check out the abandoned building, Castiel warns that he can't tell exactly what is wrong with Sam or if it will kill him. The angel then notices a breeze from a wall and realizes that there's a hidden door.
As Sam and Meg paint anti-demon wards on the building walls, Sam explains that they didn't search for Meg after she was shot up during the raid on the Leviathans. He refuses to discuss the trials or his condition, and Meg says that she knows from when she was possessing Sam's body that he just wants a normal life. Sam admits that he's right and talks about how he spent the last year with a woman and gave up the hunting knife. Meg is impressed that any woman could get Sam off of hunting.
Naomi tells Castiel to tell Dean that there's nothing in the Crypt. However, Castiel warns her that the urns are warded against angels. Demons are on the way so he can't wait to summon more angels. When he wonders what to do, Naomi tells Castiel to handle it.
Dean pries open an urn and removes the angel tablet, and Castiel immediately suggests that he take it to Heaven. The Winchester brother points out that the point of the mission is to get the angel tablet to Kevin for translation, and the angel offers to take it there. Dean says that he and Sam will deliver it.
Castiel insists that he can reason with Dean and convince him that the tablet belongs in heaven. Naomi tells him to kill Dean immediately.
Dean tells Castiel that they need to focus on finding Crowley's half of the demon tablet, and Castiel tells Dean that he won't leave with the angel tablet.
Castiel hesitates and Naomi reminds him that he's killed Dean a thousand times. She tells him to eliminate Dean and bring the table to Heaven.
Dean offers Castiel the tablet if he'll tell him the truth about how he escaped Purgatory. Castiel draws his knife.
After hearing Sam's story, Meg tells him that she understands. They hear a car pulling up and realize that Crowley's remaining demons have arrived.
Castiel attacks Dean, who tries to deflect the angel blade with the tablet.
Naomi orders Castiel to finish the job, and he wonders what she's done to him. She angrily tells Castiel that he has the blood of thousands of angels on his hands and is responsible for the ruin of Heaven. To fix things, she fixed him.
The demons arrive and attack Sam and Meg.
Castiel's vessel, fighting on its own, knock Dean to the ground.
Sam and Meg manage to kill their demon opponents.
When Dean tries to get up, Castiel breaks his arm, knocking the angel tablet to the floor.
Crowley arrives outside the building and confronts Sam and Meg.
Castiel beats Dean bloody, mumbling about Naomi, Dean warns Castiel that the only way he'll get the tablet is to kill him.
Naomi ignores Castiel's pleas to stop.
Dean tries to get through to Castiel, insisting that he has to fight Naomi's influence. As Castiel prepares to finish the job, Dean tells the angel that they're family and that they need him... and he needs him.
Naomi tells Castiel to choose: Heaven or the Winchesters.
Castiel hesitates, and then lets Dean go. He drops his knife and picks up the tablet, and it radiates out beams of brilliant yellow light.
Naomi shields her hands as the light fills her office. When she looks up, she discovers that Castiel is gone.
Castiel heals Dean and apologizes for trying to kill him.
Sam tells Crowley that the wards should keep him out of the building long enough for Dean and Castiel to get the tablet. Crowley draws his own demon knife and prepares to kill them both, and Meg tells Sam to go and save Dean... and the woman who gave him a year without hunting. Sam goes into the building and Crowley points out that if the Winchesters succeed then every demon, including Meg, will be destroyed. Satisfied that Crowley will die along with her, Meg attacks him.
Castiel tells Dean about Naomi and admits that he's not sure what broke her control over him. All he knows is that he has to protect the tablet from Naomi... and Dean. The angel teleports away just as Sam runs in and tells his brother that they have to leave.
Crowley beats Meg to a pulp but realizes that the Winchesters have made it to the Impala. Meg points out that Castiel isn't with them, meaning that the angel has teleported away with the tablet. She clutches at Crowley and manages to stab him in the shoulder, and he kills her with his knife. The Winchesters drive away and Crowley goes into the Crypt. Naomi is waiting for him and they exchange a few verbal barbs. Crowley suggests that they make a deal and asks what he has that she wants, but Naomi teleports away without responding.
As they drive away, Dean complains that Castiel lied to him and now has a dangerous weapon. He tells Sam that he won't put up with any more lies, and Sam apologizes for lying to him. Dean tells his brother that he needs to be honest with him from now on, and promises Sam that he'll do what he can to carry him even if he can't carry his burden.
Naomi's angelic assistant informs her that they've found no sign of Castiel.
Castiel takes a bus cross-country, holding the angel tablet in his hands.