Haunted by his near-death experience after ejecting from the Blackbird, Apollo begins sleeping with Shevon, a prostitute on Cloud Nine who reminds him of his pregnant girlfriend who died in the Cylon attack on the Twelve Colonies. Dee asks Apollo whether their relationship is going anywhere; he brushes her off.
Prometheus is a cargo vessel. President Laura Roslin decides to crack down on the black market within the fleet. Commander Jack Fisk at first advises against it but then volunteers Pegasus to take the lead. Fisk is later found strangled to death with piano wire in his quarters. Assigned to investigate the murder, Apollo discovers Fisk was heavily involved in the black market, and that Vice President Gaius Baltar and Colonel Saul Tigh were among Fisk's trading partners. Roslin privately asks Baltar to resign; the suggestion insults Baltar and redoubles his determination to stay in office.
Responding to an emergency call from Shevon, Apollo rushes to Cloud Nine to find her bruised and distressed. Thugs enter Shevon's room and attack Apollo. As he is being strangled with piano wire, a gangster tells Apollo to stop investigating Fisk's murder, threatens Shevon and her daughter Paya if he refuses, and knocks Apollo out. Apollo wakes to find Shevon and Paya gone and the wielder of the piano wire murdered.
Tom Zarek enters the room soon after. He claims he refused to join Fisk's smuggling network and suggests that the murderer's corpse was given to Apollo as "a way out" of his investigation. Apollo is not dissuaded, so Zarek mentions a man named Phelan who runs the black market. On Phelan's ship, Apollo discovers the black market is hoarding antibiotics and trafficking in children; Paya is among their prisoners. Phelan, who turns out to be the gangster from before, reveals that Shevon works for him and defends the black market as necessary. Apollo offers Phelan amnesty if he will release Shevon and Paya and shut down his operation. When Phelan refuses, Apollo wrests a bodyguard's handgun and kills Phelan. Apollo warns the other smugglers to clean up their operation.
Roslin objects but acquiesces to the resolution. Zarek makes his way aboard Phelan's ship. Shevon refuses to see Apollo again, saying she cannot replace his lost love. Dee returns to Billy Keikeya.