Dr. John Palahana (Cal Bellini) arrives at the estate of Constance Kincaid (Eleanor Parker) as a celebration is in progress for the fiftieth anniversary of medical practice for one of his colleagues, Dr. Gideon Webb. Palahana greets his mother (Irmgard Alului) who is admiring a painting of Webb that will be presented to him. Palahana doesn't have kind words for Webb, saying that he is "too old to perform surgery" and is "no ironman any more." When Constance appears, she asks Palahana to drop charges of negligence that he has filed with the hospital board against Webb, begging Palahana not to destroy Webb's self-respect. Pahalaha tells her "I am not one of your paniolos any longer," and says that he just came from the funeral of someone who he feels was the victim of Webb's incompetence, that the scalpel should be taken out of Webb's hand before someone else ends up dead.
The Governor arrives and talks to Constance about her pending donation of some of her land for a state park as her son-in-law Kelly Terhune (John Reilly) listens. There seems to be conflict between Palahana and Constance's daughter Julie Trahune (Lara Parker) as the two of them join a Hawaiian dance.
The dance is interrupted as someone rushes up to tell the celebrants about a body found nearby at the shoreline. Everyone rushes there, and Palahana examines the body which is that of Webb. Constance says Webb should have stopped his marathon swims, but Palahana says that Webb didn't drown, he was shot.
Back at his office, the Governor asks McGarrett to investigate the murder of Webb, who was regarded as "a legend in his own time," with discretion. McGarrett suggests that it may be difficult to be diplomatic where murder is concerned. The Governor says that both Webb and the Kincaids have written "proud chapters" in Island history, and that Mrs. Kincaid oversees an empire which includes a cattle ranch as well as sugar and pineapple plantations. She has had a hard time ever since her husband was killed accidentally while cleaning a gun. As he leaves, McGarrett asks the Governor about rumours regarding the donation of the Kincaid land to the state.
McGarrett and Danno arrive at Webb's home where he is being buried to the tune of "Aloha Oe." McGarrett says that someone must have pulled strings to get him buried on his own land. Constance greets McGarrett, thinking he is a "personal representative" of the Governor. She says everybody loved Gideon. McGarrett says that at least one person didn't.
Pete Luana (Harold Iseke) talks to Palahana, saying that he now will have to fill Webb's shoes.
Webb's servant Akino (Yankee Chang) is interviewed by Williams, and reveals much. Akino says that Webb was home in the afternoon before his death, and was drinking -- unusual behavior. He says that Webb spent considerable time on the phone, talking about "withdrawals" and "deposits." Akino made a cold supper for Webb and a soon-to-arrive lady friend. But before Akino left, Palahana came to visit and Akino heard the two of them arguing violently, with Palahana accusing Webb of having bungled an operation.
McGarrett wants Webb's bank account checked. He says it looks like Webb was pressing someone on the hospital board to support him against Palahana's accusations. McGarrett and Danno go to the hospital on the Kincaid ranch where McGarrett talks to Constance about the charges made against Webb, and the possibility that Webb was trying to drum up support for his cause. When he asks if Palahana's accusations were ever investigated, Constance says that an investigation by the hospital staff doesn't agree with them. When McGarrett asks Julie where she was the night before Webb's murder, Kelly says that she was with him.
In the parking lot, Julie thanks Kelly for covering for her.
Kelly meets with Paul Weaver, a developer, at a downtown construction site. Weaver wonders if Kelly has persuaded Constance to donate the park yet. Kelly says that "sentiment" is holding her back and that he will go "to the rescue."
On the beach, McGarrett talks to Palahana about the argument he had with Webb. Palahana says that Webb was a "stubborn old man" who "wouldn't admit he was washed up as a surgeon." To the suggestion that he was after Webb's job, Palahana says that Webb was one of his heroes, who helped him get through medical school. John grew up on the Kincaid ranch where his mother still runs the "big house." He says "the crown princess doesn't marry a local cowboy." Asked if he owns a shotgun, Palahana says that McGarrett probably already knows that he was a champion at skeet shooting.
Talking to Constance, McGarrett wonders what Palahana stood to gain from Webb's death, relating details of his discussion with John on the beach. Constance says that she will pay for Palahana's legal counsel. She says "I take care of my people," that the Palahanas have lived there since her great-grandfather established a mission. When McGarrett asks, "Wasn't it their land first?" she accuses him of being a "bleeding-heart liberal who believes the Hawaiians were exploited by the missionaries." She says the Hawaiian people are "child-like as far as responsibility and initiative are concerned." McGarrett says, "How can they learn responsibility if everything is taken from them?" Constance reveals that when she dies, the estate will be left in trust to the people who live there.
McGarrett gets a call which reports a bill in Webb's desk for a private detective's airfare to and from Hong Kong. He orders Chin Ho to grab the next flight there.
Chin Ho reports from Hong Kong that Webb's detective was murdered in what looks like a "professional hit" the same day that Webb's body washed up on the beach.
In Webb's safety deposit box, Duke discovers what looks like a bank passbook with handwritten entries for favors given and received. There are initials in the book which correspond to members of the hospital board. McGarrett says that Webb dealt in something besides money.
Julie Trahune is working in the ranch's hospital clinic with Palahana. She calls him the "new ironman," but he says "I'm not 'the new ironman'." She responds with "Who should know that better than I." They discuss their past relationship, he says "it wouldn't have worked out then." She says "it wasn't the 'poor little rich girl' who caved in," and that she could "have waited." He says that she wanted someone "more suitable to the Kincaid image," to which she exclaims, "God, I hate you for what you threw away." McGarrett overhears this conversation.
On the beach, McGarrett watches Constance skeet shooting. He tells her he's not getting too much co-operation. Referring to Webb's "bankbook," he says that "country doctors have strange bookkeeping records," and that Constance's initials appeared a lot in the "deposit" column. McGarrett says that Webb had access to a lot of confidential information. She says, "What are you getting at ... blackmail?" Referring to her shooting abilities, she says she couldn't hit a man swimming in the ocean at night. When McGarrett says no one mentioned "at night," she says, "Does that approximate a lie detector test?"
Kelly gives McGarrett a lot of mouth, saying the Governor would take a dim view of McGarrett's tactics, and that maybe the state will lose the park as a result. McGarrett wonders if Webb was trying to block the deal. When Kelly questions the use of the word "deal," McGarrett points out that if if someone donated land to the State, they would get a large tax write-off and probably sell adjoining property to a developer to realize a nice profit -- this constitutes a "deal." Constance suddenly announces that she doesn't intend to give the land to the State after all, which shocks Kelly.
Kelly visits Weaver again, saying that things will take longer than expected. Weaver is not happy with this development.
Back at the Five-O office, it's revealed that one of the shells found near the murder scene matches Palahana's shotgun.
McGarrett talks to Palahana at the hospital, who doesn't have an alibi for after his fight with Webb. He says he hasn't touched his gun in ages. McGarrett says Palahana had motive, opportunity and he owned the murder weapon, but he has a "gut feeling" about the doctor.
In Webb's "bankbook," Five-O discovers some "deposits" from Julie.
McGarrett learns from Constance that her husband actually committed suicide. This means that Webb committed perjury when he lied about the death.
McGarrett talks to Julie, who confesses that she and Palahana were once lovers, but her mother broke up the relationship and sent him off to medical school. Eight months later, Julie had Palahana's child with the help of Webb, who sent her to visit his friends in California. The child is Kai (Scott Kingston), who has been raised by Pete Luana and his wife. Neither Constance nor John know about the child. Julie also says that she visited Webb on the night before his murder, and talked to the doctor about supporting him at the next hospital board meeting.
Chin Ho reports that Webb's detective discovered that forty percent of the stock in the Cathay Corporation is owned by Kelly Trahune. This outfit is involved with a multi-million dollar deal on the land next to the proposed park. The boss of the corporation is Weaver, who ordered the hit on Webb, according to an informant.
McGarrett tells Julie that her husband knew about her mother's will, tried to put the development deal together, and when Webb found out about it, killed him.
Meanwhile, Kelly is confronting Constance in the nearby stables about his development plan which is going down the toilet. He says that he has committed them to the project, and she says there will never be a resort. As she tries to leave, he grabs her and throws her to the ground, causing her to hit her head. He exits from the stall and agitates a horse, which rears up as McGarrett enters, first punching Kelly out. Kelly is booked.
Later, Palahana bandages Constance, who apologizes to both him and McGarrett. She says there is now an opening on the hospital board. Palahana replies, "I'm no 'yes man'." Constance tells McGarrett, "You come on pretty strong." Julie accompanies McGarrett as he leaves, saying that she will tell her mother and John about Kai -- "it's truth time now."