Recap: JR and Tina Louise are sipping wine and leisurely strolling along a boardwalk overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Tina Louise asks JR if it bothers him that she betrayed him to Cliff in the Spy in the House episode, but he quickly changes the subject and mutters about how it's time for lunch. When Tina Louise presses the issue, JR breezily says that the betrayal is in the past, and that he has no urge to discuss it...however, what he does want to discuss is how well Cliff stacks up to him in the sack. Tina Louise giggles at that disturbing comparison as he leans in for a smooch.
It's Cliff's first day on the job as chief of the Land Management Bureau. As Mr. Maxwell toasts to his success, Cliff asks him if he has any immediate instructions to re-zone something, then mutters about how cognizant he is about having sold his soul to the devil when he agreed to take this job. Mr. Maxwell tells him it's not that bad, then reminds him that he now has the power to make a certain oilman very uncomfortable. He concedes that, yeah, he may ask him favors from time to time...but in exchange for that bit of soul selling, he's otherwise free to use the full power of his office to bury JR Ewing.
Cliff calls Southfork to invite Pam and Bobby to dinner - and we see that Cliff's phone has been tapped by JR's private investigator, Dan Marsh, and that he's eavesdropping on the conversation from a nearby surveillance van. Pam is standoffish toward her brother 'cause it's only been two episodes since she learned he was having an affair with Sue Ellen. Cliff's only defence is, "I'm a man, it happens" then says he'd really really like to treat her and Bobby to dinner. Pam tells him she'll check with Bobby and get back to him later.
Bobby and Ray are going over the floor plans for Ray's new house on his newly acquired plot of Southfork land - but Ray is in a glum mood and tells Bobby he's lost interest in the project 'cause the idea of living alone holds no appeal for him. He says he's still pissed off at JR for boning his honey, Garnet, in the Triangle episode, then snarls, "Makes my blood run cold." He bitches about how JR messes around with too many lives, and warns that one day it's going to catch up to him. Like maybe in the form of a cliffhanger shooting. Bobby reminds Ray that Garnet wasn't exactly an unwilling participant when she and JR hit the sheets, and Ray concedes that she was an opportunistic hussy...then shifts the conversation to the investigation around Section 40 of Southfork, and the snarly way JR forbade him to look into the oil crew he suspects of doing some mysterious, unauthorized work. Bobby solemnly asks him if Jock knows about this, but Ray says no, and that he wants some hard facts before he tattles to the old man. He says he learned that a roughneck named Charlie Waters was on that crew...and that he's sure it's somehow linked to a nefarious scheme of JR's. Bobby mulls that over and offers to help him locate Charlie Waters.
Cliff is convening a meeting with his staff - a group of middle aged white men - at the Land Management Bureau...and is pretending as though he has no intention of letting his personal feelings for the Ewings impact how he'll run this office. When one of the men - O'Neill - calls him out on his bullcack by pointing out that the Ewings practically stole the State Senate race from him, Cliff asks him to "pretend to be a vengeful me" and prepare a dossier on Ewing Oil.
JR and Tina Louise are lounging by the fireplace in their romantic hideaway. JR says he's going to rent a helicopter tomorrow to check on some of Ewing Oil's offshore platforms...and Tina Louise chides him for focusing on business during their sexcation. She remarks that she's surprised she's been able to keep him away from business this long, and he tenderly tells her she's the first woman who's ever had the power to do that. A few seconds later, he gets a call from O'Neill, who informs him that Cliff has tasked him with putting together a dossier on Ewing Oil. JR chuckles and says he'll be sure to keep the traitor supplied with bribe money so he remains loyal to the Ewing cause, then hangs up and laughingly tells Tina Louise that Cliff is making waves again.
Pam arrives at a restaurant and joins Cliff at his table. She apologizes for being late and tells him she got hung up at work...then tut-tuts him again for carrying on an affair with Sue Ellen. He assures her it's over, then asks if Bobby will be joining them. She says he is, and that she didn't spill the beans to him about his affair with Sue Ellen...'cause what would be the point, now that that uninteresting storyline has been fully played out. A few seconds later, Bobby arrives and cheerfully says hello to his brother-in-law and asks whassup. Cliff outright tells him he's using his new job to investigate the Ewings, then warns Bobby that his hands better be clean. Bobby just smiles back at him in his usual bland way and looks unconcerned.
JR drops off Tina Louise at her apartment, kisses her goodbye, then heads home to Southfork. As she unpacks her bags, she notices that her apartment has been searched - but in a subtle, non-ransacky kind of way. She chuckles knowingly and says, "You'll never find it, JR. 'Cause you don't know where to look."
Ray enters a seedy bar and announces to the bartender that he's looking for a roughneck named Charlie Waters...and a few seconds later, the roughneck - plus two additional roughnecks - appears behind him. Charlie snarls at Ray for not knowing when to quit nosing in his bidness, then orders him to step outside for an ass-kicking. As he grabs at Ray, Ray starts punching him...and soon all four men are rolling around in a giant bar brawl.
When Pam and Bobby return to the ranch after dinner, they encounter a bruised and bloodied Ray, who asks to speak to Bobby alone. He tells Bobby he had a run-in with Charlie Waters and two of his thugs, and that he suspects Charlie knows exactly what went down in Section 40. Bobby urges him to keep a lid on his suspicions until they know more about this tedious subplot.
Cliff is having lunch at a low budget cafeteria when he sees Tina Louise sitting at one of the tables. He joins her and asks her if this encounter is a coincidence or some sleazy undercover work she's doing for JR, then says he assumes she's resumed her affair with the philandering scoundrel. Tina Louise breezily says he's not that bad, and that she only chose this cafeteria to lunch in 'cause she has a job interview across the street. Cliff says he's surprised she's not working for Ewing Oil, then waxes on about how gorgeous and sexy she is...and invokes her inside knowledge of where JR's skeletons are buried. He says, "I'm ready to buy what you have to sell" and she saucily tells him he doesn't have the price, and that she now regrets how cheaply she sold out to him in Season 1. Cliff says, "JR hasn't hurt you badly enough this time" and Tina Louise declines to say anything further and asks Cliff to go buy her a tray of food so she can keep her mouth occupied and be less likely to spill any Ewing secrets. Meanwhile, Willie Joe Garr (one of JR's hillbilly associates) is also in the cafeteria, covertly watching the two from several tables away.
Charlie Waters informs JR that he and Ray got into a bar fight yesterday, and an irked JR reminds him he was supposed to have absconded to Midland by now. He hands the dumbfuck a wad of cash and orders him to get out of the country, pronto.
Bobby gets a phone call from a friend named Alex and asks him if he knows a roughneck named Charlie Waters...and at that moment, Jock happens to amble into the study. Bobby is dismayed to learn that Charlie has fled to Mexico...and when he finishes the call, Jock asks him why he's asking about a jerk like Charlie Waters. When Bobby pretends he's helping a friend put a crew together, Jock tells him he fired Charlie Waters five years ago for stealing a truckload of tools. Bobby looks stricken and says he'll warn his friend about the thief.
JR summons Willie Joe Garr and Jeb Ames to his office so he can express his annoyance about their insistence that he test the land on Section 40 for oil. He says he just had to pay a roughneck to get out of the country 'cause he couldn't keep his mouth shut about being on the Section 40 crew. He then changes the subject to some good news: their drilling site on the panhandle turned out to be a gusher, and is expected to churn out 10,000 barrels of oil a day. After the three high-five each other, Willie Joe reports to JR that he saw Tina Louise eating lunch with Cliff the other day, but JR looks unconcerned about any possible collusion...however, once the two men leave, JR calls Dan Marsh and orders him to put a tail on Tina Louise.
JR drops in on Tina Louise for a booty call. She complains that she has a life (though not much of one from what I can tell) and can't just be available to him whenever. JR flippantly says she's welcome to get a boyfriend, as long as she leaves some time for him...and somehow this gets Tina Louise in the mood for some lovin', and the two hit the sheets. Post coitus, JR tells her he heard about her lunching with Cliff the other day, then suggests she put their friendship to good use...and by good use, he means collect valuable intel for him while she and Cliff are pillow-talking. Tina Louise looks appalled and asks him if he's actually suggesting that she doink Cliff for the purpose of spying for Ewing Oil, and JR's like, "Well, d'yuh" and laughingly says, "I'm not the jealous type." He then finishes getting dressed and exits the apartment, leaving Tina Louise staring after him with an expression of hurt and bewilderment.
Bobby storms into the study while JR is on the phone getting his nightly surveillance update from Dan Marsh. Bobby reminds him that he promised to look into the tampered oil well on Section 40 and wants to know what he uncovered. JR tries to deflect answering that loaded question by telling Bobby the good news about the gusher on the panhandle - but Bobby steers the conversation back to Section 40 and tells him that Ray's covert investigation uncovered the name Charlie Waters. JR pretends he's never heard the name before, but Bobby angrily accuses him of ordering Ray to stay out of it, then demands to know why Charlie Waters suddenly left for Mexico. JR fake cringes and asks Bobby if he's going to punch him...and when Bobby throws in the towel on the conversation and says no, JR tells him it's time to join the rest of the family for dinner.
A sad looking Tina Louise calls Cliff, but gets his answering machine. She leaves a message - which Dan Marsh listens in on - about how she knows where JR's skeletons are buried, and that she's been hurt by him enough and is now willing to talk about price. She retrieves a piece of paper she has taped to the bottom of her jewelry box, puts it in an envelop and addresses it, then runs out to the hall and mails it. Dan Marsh quickly calls Jeb Ames and replays the message that Tina Louise just left for Cliff and tells him he needs to put a stop to the troublemaker, like pronto.
Cliff returns home, plays his answering machine, and rushes out the door.
Jeb storms over to Tina Louise's apartment and tells her it's time to leave Dallas, now that she's trying to make a deal with Cliff in order to intentionally screw over JR. He gives her five minutes to pack, and she goes into her bedroom, pulls out her suitcase...but then slips out a conveniently located back door that leads straight to the hall. After waiting for the elevator, she hears Jeb exit her back door and runs over to the stairwell...but panics when she sees Willie Joe standing several flights below. She changes direction and runs up to the roof...and by this time, both Willie Joe and Jeb are in close pursuit.
Tina Louise reaches the roof of her building and hides behind a wall - just as Cliff arrives at her apartment building. He sees her apartment door wide open, then steps inside and calls her name...and looks perplexed when he gets no answer.
Tina Louise presses herself against the wall, looking as terrified as she can muster. Jeb eventually spots her and chases her...and eventually the two men get close enough to grab her. She wails, "You're going to kill me!" and struggles against their grip...and as she's doing that, she somehow flings herself several feet backwards, then into the air, and does an acrobatic front-flip off the side of the roof before landing - splat! - onto the pavement below.
Jock enters the dining room as the family gathers for their compulsory 6:00pm dinner. He opens the local paper and notices the headline, Murder or Suicide? above a photo of Tina Louise. He's all, "Wha-a?!" and announces to everyone that Tina Louise is dead. JR springs up from his chair and rushes around the table so he can check out the article. He then leaves the dining room, ashen-faced, to read the paper alone. A few seconds later, Bobby trails into the study after him and asks if there's anything he can do 'cause he knows how much the tart meant to him in the sack, but JR just snarks that he wants to be alone.
Detective McSween and Lieutenant Sutton drop by Cliff's apartment to request that he accompany them downtown for questioning. Cliff stares at them in blank confusion, so one of the officers informs him that Tina Louise is dead, and accusingly adds that he was seen leaving her apartment last night.
Dan Marsh plays for JR the phone machine message that Tina Louise left for Cliff, and JR says that clearly this implies that Cliff killed her. Dan reminds him that the tape can't be used as evidence, since it was obtained illegally...so JR mulls that over for a few seconds, then calls up Detective McSween to inform him that Cliff has an answering machine in his apartment...and that "there's no telling who could have left a message on it". McSween sarcastically replies that it's good to have such public spirited servants like him around...but agrees to get right on that, since it's safe to assume that he's on some kind of bribery instalment plan so he stays helpful to the Ewings.
Sutton and McSween play Cliff's phone message back to him, then read him his rights and arrest him for murder...despite the absence of actual evidence that he committed the crime, and the fact that Tina Louise's phone message implicates JR far more than it does Cliff.
Pam arrives at the jailhouse to see Cliff. She asks him why they picked him up, so he explains that he had stopped by Tina Louise's apartment last night after receiving a phone message from her. He says he's sure that JR tapped his phone after learning about his affair with Sue Ellen, and correctly assumes that he was the one who tipped off the police so they'd know to listen to his answering machine.
Pam storms back to Southfork and into the study, where the family is gathered for their before-dinner drinks ritual. She tells everyone that JR is the reason Cliff is in jail, and JR snaps back that he's in jail because he killed someone. Pam snarls that he knows damn well that that's not true, then accuses him of framing Cliff and tapping his phone. When JR warns her about making such a serious accusation, she starts railing about how the Ewing empire is built on a turd-filled mound of deceit and theft, and that they're all a pile of rotten shitbags. Jock gets angry and gruffly barks, "That's enough of that, Pam!" so she storms upstairs to pack and is followed by Bobby, who begs her not to leave and says that running away won't help. Pam says she could use a break from this claustrophobic cesspool of a ranch for awhile, then ominously adds, "I don't know if I can be married to a Ewing." Bobby implores her to not let these problems affect their marriage, but she insists she needs time alone.
As Pam drives off, JR and Sue Ellen stand on the patio and stare after her car. JR shrugs dismissively and says, "That's no loss" and Sue Ellen glares at him and asks what kind of man he is, standing by while Cliff faces prison time or possibly the death penalty. JR coldly says he deserves it if he's guilty, but Sue Ellen says the only reason he hates Cliff so much is 'cause he got it on with her behind his back. JR's like, "Whatever" and orders her to get back to the dining room, 'cause Jock might have a conniption if the family (sans Pam) doesn't eat their dinner at the prescribed Southfork dinner time.