A meeting takes place at Veritex in Honolulu headed by a man (Ric Marlow) who turns it over to Larry (Tom Fujiwara). He reads information off for a 68 year-old guy from Youngstown, Ohio but the woman (Wisa D'Orso) in the meeting advises reject due to "age factor". They agree and move on. Larry reads off information on the next guy, Wallace H. Schuster (Bill Edwards): from Dallas, Texas with a AAA credit rating, first Vice President at Tri-Oceanic, a conglomerate, married with two children and assets of $1.6 billion. The group jumps on him.
Wallace is poolside when a pretty girl (Elithe Aguiar (Hung)) drops an ice cube on him. They begin talking as she seductively takes off her sandals. She poses on her lounge as he eats it up. Later, Wallace is in his hotel when Larry knocks on the door and is allowed entry. As he packs to go home, Larry offers to sell him some insurance: blackmail insurance.
The telex in Five-O is busy spitting something out as Ben watches. Duke (Herman Wedemeyer) receives a photo off another machine and Ben takes them into McGarrett's office. The request is from the Atlanta Police Department because of a recent suicide with blackmail suspected. The photo of the girl was found among the possessions of a Raymond Prideaux and she's a suspected acquaintance of Prideaux's in Hawaii because he was there three months prior. Atlanta wants a response as soon as possible. McGarrett recalls a suicide of a mainlander in Honolulu three months ago as well: Albert Johanson. There were photographs in his possession as well and McGarrett wants to see them. On his desk, all the photos match. McGarrett tells Ben to make ripples, waves if necessary, to identify the girl.
Back in Dallas, Wallace nods to a buddy (William Shatner) to start snooping in the locker room at the golf club. He looks in the locker labeled 'Arthur Johnson'. Grabbing all the IDs, the snoop snaps pictures of them.
Ben goes to visit a madam named Dollie (Jorie Remus) about the girl and they both accuse each other of lying. Dollie relents telling Ben she took a trip to Miami about a year before searching for some new faces. Dollie remembers the girl, "a lot of class, I liked her". Dollie goes on to say she couldn't convince her to come to Hawaii but saw her four months ago in Honolulu doing her on thing with lots of connections and contacts essentially blowing off Dollie. She never saw the girl again.
In the Dallas airport, Wallace meets with his snooping buddy Sam carrying pictures. Wallace isn't sure it's a good idea for Sam to go after the blackmailers but Sam feels he indebted to Wallace for setting him up with his first industrial account when he turned private detective. Sam calls his wife again before boarding his flight. He tells Wallace he's going to get him out of the jam he's in but he'll have to keep paying until he hears from Sam who takes the exact route Wallace did when he went to Hawaii. Sam arrives in Hawaii having to wait on his rental car. In the meantime, he goes over the sketch of Wallace's hotel room.
McGarrett sketches out a hotel room on the chalkboard in his office trying to figure out how the picture of the topless girl was taken: the same girl Atlanta is looking for. McGarrett figures out the camera was set up in a purse, based on the angle and the light source. At the same time he figures it out, so does Sam who is going by the name "Arthur Jackson". Chin points out there would have to be special film with McGarrett directing him to follow through on that angle. He also tells Danno to follow up with hotels because she probably frequented some and someone could remember something. As well, he directs Ben is to run off copies of her photo and saturate the area with them; someone has to know something. The Five-O team gets down to it asking all over.
Sam/Arthur sits poolside as a pretty young woman (Sharlene Silva) takes an interest in him even introducing her friend Maria. While all of this is going on, the blonde girl is at the bottom of the ocean tied to cement blocks!
McGarrett arrives at the Medical Examiner's Office, where Doc Bergman (Al Eben) briefs him, Danno and Ben. He says she's been underwater three to four days, the same time the telex arrived form Atlanta. Danno has her information based on her fingerprints: Karen Bell, age 24 from Orlando, Florida and no record. Danno suspects she was dumped in the Maui Channel drifting some due to the strong currents and may not yet be found except some local divers for black coral found her.
In McGarrett's office, he pulls up a map of the islands because she was found between Maui and Lanai. McGarrett considers it "a lot of trouble" to dispose of her. They recap what they know: two tourists from different parts of the mainland commit suicide and she's the common thread. McGarrett finds it hard to believe she could have found out everything about them on her own and Chin wonders if someone else isn't pulling the strings. Ben is confused, why kill her because she was doing "all right for them". Danno tosses out that whoever is behind the operation has "a whole flock" of Karen Bells, a bunch of operatives. It doesn't make sense but McGarrett keeps on it because one girl could be expendable if one had a bunch. Taking a step back, they realize she was in both sets of pictures of two men who committed suicide, which means police investigations: she became a liability and no longer an asset. However, Ben sees a problem: "too far, too fast," how did her boss in Honolulu know about the suicide in Atlanta that quickly? Ben suggests the operation they're dealing with is huge with operatives all around the country. McGarrett believes this is the only plausible explanation. He goes over the telex information again to find commonalities: both were wealthy businessmen with "images to preserve at home" and both "sitting ducks". Danno proposes the huge organization is probably using the latest in communications and McGarrett agrees they're up against something new and "ruthless". He wants Danno to find out every business using telex communications.
Sam/Arthur is on the beach when Larry approaches him about blackmail insurance showing him the pictures. They go to his room to discuss the matter.
Danno visits a technician explaining there is a communications satellite over each ocean. A message from the mainland could be sent from wherever there is a station, goes to the computer bank in New York then beamed to the satellite back down to the radar dish in Honolulu, finally sent over phone lines to the subscriber companies. Back at Five-O, they have been able to whittle the list to 79 companies. McGarrett wants to know when they have a handful.
Sam/Arthur is really sweating it as Larry continues his sales pitch saying he won't miss the monthly payments. However, Sam is through playing around pulling a gun on Larry causing him to twitch. Sam has a bit of fun with Larry telling him he's not going to kill him, but it's insurance to keep Larry off the video recorder! Larry freezes knowing he's caught with Sam bringing him out of his stupor demanding the name of the organization and the head man. Larry finally gives up the names: Veritex with its Chairman of the Board William Speer. Sam stops the videotape telling Larry they're going to go to Veritex and he will introduce Sam to the Chairman.
In John Manicote's (Glenn Cannon) office, McGarrett wants five court orders on five subscribers' telex lines. They started with thousands all but the five turned out legitimate. These five are "vague" and they are allowed to tap them but Judge Kalehei won't allow home phones to be tapped, only if they track to one will he allow home phones to be tapped. McGarrett leaves muttering about the judge making it tough.
Larry and Sam arrive at Veritex asking the receptionist to call Speer. Speer, who ran the meeting earlier, allows them in not impressed by Larry bringing their latest target to the boardroom. Sam walks in with Speer immediately recognizing he's not Arthur Jackson and asks what they should call him, "partner" is the answer.
Speer considers his options with his new partner who demands 25 percent. Sam continues his BS routine knowing the negatives are at the company but he's not worried because he has the video of Larry trying to blackmail him. He also threatens to send the video to the police should any harm come to him or Larry.
At the communications center, the telex machines are tapped into so when the parent machines run, the slaves will too. Danno reports into McGarrett: the first is "a credit checkout" using code, the second is a bookmaker they never knew about, the third deals with gold, the fourth is in deep trouble an going under, and the fifth is Veritex the trouble makers they're looking for with full personal and financial reports on rich incoming tourists. McGarrett plans to ask for blanket phone taps on everyone connected with Veritex now that they're down to one.
At Veritex, Speer knows Sam won't be satisfied with 25 percent because he'll want everything. The woman voices her impression that Sam has served the "big boys" for so long he wants he own "killing". As well, she says he's a loner using help when necessary and his next target will be the negatives and eliminating Speer. Speer comes up with his own counterattack to have prints pulled from the ashtray Sam used and asking Dallas about their new partner. Speer wants to know his vulnerability, his background and what skills he possesses. When the message is sent to Dallas, Danno relays it to the other end of the phone, probably McGarrett.
At Five-O, Ben hangs out by the telex with information arriving from Washington. Sam Tolliver is identified as a private investigator from Dallas and McGarrett wonders why he's with Veritex. McGarrett also wonders why he didn't notify them he was in town.
At the Hawaiian Regent, Sam takes a call from Speer who tells him they're ready to do business. Speer requests a meet at his beach house at 10:00 the next morning. Chin and an HPD officer listen in. Sam then calls Chicago.
That night in McGarrett's office, they listen to the tapes of Sam's conversation with his buddy Cal. They talk about a contract hit with Sam needing someone local and Cal recommends Don Makala. Chin says Sam tried Makala twice with no answer but finally got him with a meet in an hour. McGarrett says that's enough but wonders where all the pieces fit. Danno and Ben throw out he's part of the organization or he acting on the behalf of a client being blackmailed. McGarrett doesn't care; he knows they have a way in.
At Makala's apartment, Ben takes the place of the hit man with Sam offering $10,000 "for a hard squeeze, maybe a hit". Ben tells him he wants to who Sam it but Sam isn't forthcoming. Ben keeps pressing especially when Sam ups the money to $15,000. Ben says he may decide he doesn't want the job. Sam is impressed because the hit man is "smart". Sam offers Ben "a plush future" but Ben is interested in the present. Sam talks about Veritex and the guy heading it shouldn't be, he should. Five-O listens in as they talk about blackmail on a "big scale" and the layout of the beach house. According to Sam, Larry gave him the layout and Ben wonders if it isn't too open. Sam wants to go tonight and his policy is to stick with Ben until the job is done.
Everyone arrives at Speer's beach house the next morning. Ben and Sam climb up to a balcony on the second floor as McGarrett and Danno, armed with a rifle, watch from the yard. Sam breaks into the balcony door and they sneak into Speer's bedroom where he appears to be asleep. Sam turns on the lamp as Ben holds the gun on Speer who has some surprises up his sleeve including knowing Sam's real name. Speer tells Sam to call his home in Dallas handing him the phone. Speer has managed to hold Sam's family hostage with a pair of thugs with guns. Speer has the upper hand as he calls for his houseboy to go with Sam to retrieve the tape of Larry at Sam's hotel. The houseboy, Philip, appears at the door and recognizes Ben as a Five-O officer! Philip also finds the wire and Speer plans his getaway by opening his safe and grabbing all the negatives. Speer speaks into the wire for McGarrett's benefit demanding safe passage to his launch and once there, Ben will be released.
The four men walk out across the yard to the beach as the launch approaches and Danno looks for a shot. Speer is about to speak when McGarrett yells at him to freeze and all the Five-O guys come over the sea wall. On the launch, it's Duke and another HPD officer as Speer and the others are blocked! They're soon surrounded as McGarrett tells Ben to arrest Sam after he tells Danno to coordinate with Dallas PD to free Sam's family. Chin moves in to arrest Speer taking all the stuff from the safe.
This plot summary Copyright Bobbi Baker ©2019. No reproduction of any kind without permission.