A man (David Arkin) knocks on a house's door in the middle of the night. Finally opening the door, he calls out to 'Ted' (Jeff Pomerantz) who is passed out on the bed. Turning on the light, the man finds a kid (Harold Best) on the couch and a bottle of chloroform on the end table. Ted tells George, after George wakes him, he couldn't have kidnapped the kid on the couch. Ted has no memory of how the kid arrived at his house. Knowing the kid has to be released, Ted weakly stumbles out of bed, but George stops him assuring that he'll take care of the kid. George gives some pills to Ted and sets out to "take [the kid] out someplace and let him loose". George drives the kid out on a road, laying him in the brush then takes off.
McGarrett arrives on scene in a neighborhood where several HPD cars are parked up and down the street. On the surface it appears to be a kidnapping according to Kioko (Doug Mossman) from HPD, but the FBI hasn't been notified, "haven't got enough yet. I wanted you to take a look first". McGarrett enters the house to speak to devastated parents, Enid Emory (Peggy Anne Siegmund) and her husband, Wade (Joseph V. Stewart). She tells McGarrett she couldn't sleep and went to check on David, her son but he was simply gone. McGarrett asks the usual questions, such as anything unusual heard or seen and has David went anywhere on his own.
McGarrett goes to the bedroom where the team is combing through everything. Outside is no help because it's "all cement and asphalt". McGarrett seems puzzled because the Emorys are obviously middle-class with upper-class homes not far away. Danno finds remnants of chloroform on David's pillow, pointing it out to McGarrett. While there isn't a ransom note found in the home, one has been delivered to HPD. The Five-O team runs out.
David wakes up in the brush and makes his way to the road above Honolulu. The ransom note reads, "I have your boy. Leave $500 in a trash can at the corner of Campbell and Kapahulu at 4 p.m. Thursday or he will be killed". Mrs. Watson (Doreen Lang) who brought it in really denies having a son and wants nothing to do with any part of the case. Being less than cooperative, "lots of nutty people wandering around loose," is the defensive answer when McGarrett asks why the kidnapper would leave the ransom note in her mailbox. McGarrett is skeptical if the two tie in together because the Emorys live on a completely different street as Mrs. Watson. But Chin says, "but no other kidnappings are reported, Steve". The only thing they have to go on is the chloroform and that's not much. "You can buy chloroform in any drugstore. You don't even need a prescription". McGarrett still wants any recent sales of chloroform to be checked and Kono starts on it. Chin is given the task of completing a run down on Mrs. Watson searching for a connection to the Emorys. McGarrett hands the note to Danno to work on it finding any leads there. They also have to deal with the money drop; which is strange in and of itself, "Too soon, too easy. Daylight drop. Small amount of money. Petty cash by most kidnap standards. No warning to keep the police away".
George returns to Ted's house where Ted is still out of it. Ted eventually answers the door, asking what time it is and telling George he had a nightmare. George corrects him, "you didn't have any nightmare ... [a kid] was here, all right. You brought him here. I took him away". These facts upset Ted while George keeps telling him, "don't worry about it". George also shows Ted the newspaper with his mother's picture of Mrs. Watson at Five-O. The more George talks, the more upset Ted becomes before George reassures him.
McGarrett and Danno stake out the drop off point to see who shows up. An HPD officer is up on a telephone pole with a good view of the street below. As expected, Mr. Emory shows up but thus far, no suspect. Emory makes the drop and moves on. Waiting several minutes, McGarrett finally calls it, "I have a feeling we've been had, Danno". Central Dispatch calls McGarrett with Kono at the other end. David Emory has been found, picked up about 20 minutes before near a pineapple field.
At Ted's house, the real-life nightmare starts all over again as George carries in another boy. Ted is asleep, oblivious to what's happening. George violently wakes up Ted again truly restarting the cycle.
Ted is now despondent as George presses for any details he can remember. "Look, you can't keep going on like this," George continues driving Ted into a desperate insanity. When Ted wants to go back to the hospital, George stops him. This is where George first mentions the Vietcong but Ted can't recall anything from that time either. George describes Ted carrying him off the field even when he was suffering from a head wound. George assures Ted he'll take care of the kid.
McGarrett and Danno arrive at the hospital to talk to David Emory. David is willing to help but he doesn't really remember anything because he was asleep most of the time. "Until I woke up in the bushes," David nods when McGarrett asks if he's sure about his information. The Emorys rush in, hugging David thankful to McGarrett for finding him. A phone call comes in about this time and the nurse points to the phone in the room, "you may use this extension". It's news about a second kidnapping and they leave.
Mr. and Mrs. Wing are in McGarrett's office, their son a victim of the "same m.o., chloroform". Most likely the same kidnapper, the family can't give much information very much like the Emorys. Danno walks in as Mrs. Watson called again with another ransom note, again the same as the Emory case. McGarrett orders Jenny to "have an H.P.D. car pick up Mrs. Watson, bring her in, please".
Danno studies the second ransom note, "same paper, looks like the same type". Danno leaves with it enroute to the lab. Mrs. Watson still proves uncooperative, demanding to go home. She feels she has cooperated by bringing in the notes but McGarrett wants to know everything she does, especially "why" she brought the notes in. Danno walks in again as Chin came up with something interesting: Mrs. Watson changed her name and does indeed have a son. Ted's history comes out with the kidnapping of a 7-year-old boy when he was 16. "He was given a year of psychotherapeutic counseling and released. Accepted by the U.S. Army three years later. Spent eight months in Vietnam, wounded and discharged. Admitted to the Army Veterans Hospital neuropsychiatric section shortly after coming back to the islands a year ago. Released in January of this year". Mrs. Watson begins spewing venom about her son, how was "sick. From the day he was born". It's obvious she hates her son with McGarrett and Danno not sure how to react. Rather than this being about the kidnap victims, Mrs. Watson paints herself as the victim and how her son was out to hurt her. Jenny (Peggy Ryan) puts through a call from HPD; the Wing boy has been found and picked up. McGarrett orders Danno to put out an APB for Ted. As Danno leaves, McGarrett asks for pictures from Mrs. Watson, "Yes, you bet I do. Lots of them. All ugly".
Danno walks with a doctor (Chapman Lam) who explains what may be causing the dysfunction between Mrs. Watson and her son, specifically from Ted's point of view. The hospital has to make choices as far as who to release and when, Ted "seemed to be a good risk". He was initially admitted to what was thought as "an acute psychotic breakdown based on a traumatic war neurosis". The doctor continues on with the gist being Ted couldn't remember big chunks of his life and while he recalled serving in Vietnam, he couldn't recall the details of what actually occurred. The doctor says there's someone at the hospital who could give a more complete picture of Ted and introduces Danno to George!
Danno wants to know more from George such as why George tried to locate Ted after Ted was released or how long it's been since George heard from him. George lies saying he hasn't heard from Ted since his release. Since Danno is "fuzzy" on Ted's condition, Dr. Wong uses the analogy of a bee in a car driving down the road. At first a nuisance but "more of his energies had to be spent in self-defense" there is less to devote to staying on the road. This synergy then spirals into a crash. "A schizophrenic is, in one sense, being attacked by a psychological bee. A bee that disorganizes his control over the course of his life".
In McGarrett's office, Danno goes over the type in the ransom notes, "the type corresponds to that of the 1958 model Eastwood standard in our typewriter collection". There are a few quirks too with the 'K,' 'T,' and 'B' letters unique to the specific typewriter. Danno also produces a list of buyers for the typewriters sold in Hawaii since 1958. McGarrett sets Chin to check "all of them" out. McGarrett and Danno leave to go visit Ted's mother.
Mrs. Watson hesitantly walks down the stairs as the car door shuts outside. She makes her way to the door but doesn't open it right away. McGarrett maintains his professionalism; reminding her he told her they might be coming back. She doesn't let them in right away because, in her mind, there is nothing to find. McGarrett disagrees and wants to look for himself. She finally allows them entrance but is suspiciously tense the whole time. She wants nothing more to do with the case, or Ted, "I see no point in talking to you and being reminded of the past". After being asked if she has anything of Ted's packed away, she remembers "a footlocker in the storage room". She leads them to it where McGarrett and Danno open it looking for a clue as to where Ted might be located. McGarrett finds a picture of a group of them in "a Saigon nightclub". When Danno looks at it, pieces start to fall into place as George is in the photograph. George is also wearing the same insignia as Ted. This causes McGarrett to want to know more, sending Chin to the Army to find out what he can on George. Meanwhile, he sets Danno to find out George's address and "any place he might hang out".
Under the shadow of a construction crane, Mrs. Watson stands at the grave of her husband, Ted's father. Ted walks up, knowing she visits every Wednesday. Mrs. Watson fully rejects her son, "Go away and leave me alone". Ted begs her for help but she wants none of it. Ted runs off.
After the traumatic experience, Ted winds up at his house. George sits in a chair with a bottle of pills as Ted mutters in his sleep. However, a memory comes forward of what really happened in Vietnam with George reliving it with him. George makes his move to shut down Ted forever. George stabs himself in the bathroom, walking out to violently wake Ted yet again. George calls Ted "crazy" and "dangerous". The combined trauma puts Ted into a catatonic state.
Chin enters McGarrett's office with information about George. George was highly decorated in the Army: "bronze star, silver star, oak leaf cluster". George also "Suffered combat fatigue" at the same place Ted was hit. Kono walks in telling McGarrett George is off-duty.
McGarrett, Danno and Chin go to George's apartment where the typewriter is found. As Danno types, McGarrett picks up George's Purple Heart and Chin looks through an address directory. Bottom line: George has been lying but the "why" is still unknown. McGarrett sums up so far: George and Ted served together in Vietnam, George returns alone claiming everyone was killed, but then Ted is found "more dead than alive" and Ted returns to Hawaii. After Ted is admitted to the Army hospital, "then George turns up". To Chin, it "sounds like he was trying to keep an eye on him". McGarrett agrees but still doesn't know "why". Kono walks in as a call just came in from dispatch: George and Ted just showed up at the hospital.
Dr. Wong treats Ted the best he can since Ted is in "a state of catatonic stupor". George comes up with a really dumb story about how Ted showed up at his apartment, which wasn't the case since Five-O had just been there, and how Ted tried to kill him. When George feigns caring about Ted's condition, McGarrett asks, "You sure you're not glad to see him end up that way?" When George keeps up his act, Danno is the first to strike showing George the ransom notes. McGarrett moves in for the kill, "no, it's wrapped up in your mind ... How does it feel to be a hero? To know deep down inside that you sacrificed yourself for others?" George makes a run for it, eventually caught by McGarrett. With reality and memories interspersing, George relives killing his squad with Ted as the only surviving witness. Orderlies take away George as Ted emerges from his catatonic state. The poor bee, it just wants to be understood by Hawaii's top cop; explain it Danno!
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