A priest walks into a vacant, dark building. No, it’s not the beginning of a bad joke, but it is the start of an all-new Castle! Tightly gripping his rosary beads, he’s there to meet someone. But the only person who shows up is his maker, as shots are fired.
Meanwhile, it’s an evening celebration at the Castle abode as he and Martha host Beckett and her father for dinner. But Martha’s “death by chocolate” souffles aren’t the only thing dying. The dinner isn't going quite according to plan. In fact, is speeding downhill — fast. Suddenly, Beckett’s phone rings and Caskett as saved by a murder. Someone’s been killed and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Something needed to break the awkward.
Beckett and Castle arrive on the scene and are greeted by Esposito who notices a dressed-up Beckett. When the two explain that it was “meet-the-parents night,” Esposito can only respond with an “already?”
Castle chalks it up to Jim and Martha being from “different worlds.” Clearly, this doesn’t set well with Beckett, who zings back that Martha shouldn’t have verbally attacked her dad. And we still haven’t even gotten to the murder yet!
Father Joel McMurtry was found dead with three gunshot wounds to the chest, all close together. The killer also picked up the shelling cases before leaving the building, all signs of a professional hit. But who would want a priest dead?
Castle and Beckett get a lead from a local bartender who said that a guy walked into the bar, spouting that he heard gunshots fired on the corner and saw someone carrying a gun. The bartender, Jerry, put the pieces together when he heard a body was found nearby and figured the guy, Leo, must know something. Leo is the only witness, and Castle and Beckett need to find him ASAP. Jerry happens to remember Leo’s address after having to put him in a cab home. And our trusted duo are off to find him.
Meanwhile, Ryan and Esposito are tasked with interviewing a nun, Sister Mary, from Father McMurtry’s parish. Ryan’s more than a tad uncomfortable, mentally seeing flashbacks from his old Catholic school days. Sister Mary reveals that the person they need to look at for the priest’s murder is Michael “Mickey” Dolan, an Irish mob member and the enforcer for the O’Reilly family. McMurtry and Dolan grew up together and, despite their different paths, McMurtry always believed the he could help his friend-turned-mobster. But a few days ago, the two of them got into a huge argument outside of the church, and last night, Father McMurtry received a phone call regarding Dolan.
Privvy to the newest intel, Castle and Beckett arrive at Leo’s place, but they're not the only ones looking for him. A few of Dolan’s goons show up and force Beckett and Castle to relinquish their weapons, phones, and wallets. An unsuspecting Leo opens his door and Castle and Beckett race inside to evade the gun-wielding men. With Dolan’s guy trying to barge in, Castle, Beckett, and Leo manage to escape out the back window. However, Beckett’s car’s been stolen and now they're on the run in the Bronx without any help.
Ryan and Captain Gates investigate the tape of Dolan and McMurtry fighting outside of the church. Dolan is definitely the no. 1 suspect, but this spat isn’t enough to put Dolan away, something the police have been trying to do for years. Esposito also informs them that word on the street, from the Organized Crime Task Force, is that something big is going on, either a turf war or a struggle within the O’Reilly clan itself. They need to send over a picture of Dolan to Beckett, hoping Leo might be able to identify him as the man holding the gun outside the building.
With Dolan’s kill squad searching for the trio by car, Castle and Beckett try to find a phone to use to call for help. A nearby payphone cord had been cut, but Castle’s got a brilliant idea. He rings every doorbell of an apartment building until someone answers. Too bad it’s not the friendly neighbor he was hoping for. Instead of threatening to call the cops, like Castle had wanted, he just simply threatens to hurt them himself. Plan failed.
Ryan and Esposito realize they can’t get a hold of Beckett nor Castle. The tracker in Beckett’s ride shows it headed down the New Jersey Turnpike. Gates knows something’s going on and sends Esposito over to Leo’s apartment to find out what. When he enters and sees the place trashed, they think it’s solely the work of Dolan and Caskett just got caught in the middle.
Back in the Bronx, Beckett starts yelling at Castle that he’s the reason they’re in this mess. But they have no time to dig deeper in the conversation. Beckett goes all Britney Spears on a car window and steals a cellphone that was left inside. Unfortunately for them, the phone’s locked. And the car’s alarm brings the goons back around. They hide out in a neighborhood playhouse with Beckett as the lookout and Castle as the phone passcode finder. Caskett continue squabbling, this time over something as silly as the subway schedule. It’s getting awkward and Leo thinks he’d have a better chance of staying alive out in the open alone then with these two.
Soon after, Martha and Jim arrive at the precinct. Gates tries to defuse the situation, but Martha calls Gates’ bluff. “There is no way anyone would have called me if they weren’t worried,” she says. Even though Gates tries to send them both home, they aren’t going anywhere until they know their kids are safe.
Ryan notices that everyone involved with the O’Reilly clan has skipped town, except for Colin Clark, who is headed to Dublin in the morning. Gates takes the driver seat in questioning him, but Clark isn’t offering up much, except that whatever’s going on mainly involves Dolan, not everyone. If they can figure out exactly what, they’ll have a better chance at finding our helpless trio.
And they really are helpless. Castle’s not getting any closer to unlocking the phone, but all might not be lost. With the sound of a “Call Me Maybe” ringtone, someone’s calling and they might be able to reach help. But alas, it’s the phone’s owner whose quite peeved her phone’s been stolen. Castle unsuccessfully pleads with her to call 911, but instead, she remotely disables the phone. Plan failed again.
Beckett sees a taxi drive by and all three of them chase it down, despite Leo’s fall and hurting his ankle. Beckett pulls the “I’m a police officer” card, but the cabbie doesn’t buy it. And she doesn’t have a badge. Castle offers up $1000 for a ride into the city, but he’s walletless. Just as the taxi pulls away, the kill squad are back and the chase continues, leading them into an abandoned basement.
Trapped, Beckett finds a 24-hour restaurant takeout menu and notices it’s close proximity. Castle, on the other hand, finds some tools and an old CB radio. He’s about to go MacGyver-style on it, while Beckett rolls her eyes. Finally, Leo’s had enough with all this bickering. He offers up that the reason they're actually fighting has nothing to do with the ruined dinner, it’s really about them.
Caskett mull over what Leo said. Kate’s insecurities pour out. “You’re this world famous author and I’m just this cop and we’re in this relationship, which makes absolutely no sense on paper. And sometimes I just start wondering, are we just kidding ourselves?” Ding, that’s what the fight was really about. But they have no time to really talk it over. The goons are gone and this is their only window at making it to the restaurant to call for help. Castle goes alone, since Leo can’t run and he doesn’t want to put Beckett in harms way. And with a kiss goodbye, he leaves.
Ryan and Espo reexamine the tape of McMurtry and Dolan fighting to see if they missed anything. This time they spot Federal Agents coming up to McMurtry after Dolan leaves. If McMurtry was squealing to the Feds, of course Dolan would want him dead. And if they kept eyes on Dolan, too, they might know where he is right now.
Just before Castle can make it to the restaurant, Dolan and his goons capture him. Castle’s not talking, but Dolan is an expert poker player and manages to get the location out of him.
In the basement, Beckett’s trying to send morse code, but is clearly worried about Castle. Leo pulls a Dr. Phil and says that life’s too short. She should live for now, not the future, despite their different worlds.
Back at the precinct, a Federal Agent who was tailing our victim, spills that is wasn’t the priest, but Dolan, who was the informant. He was going to turn against the O’Reilly family, with some encouragement from McMurtry, in exchange for immunity. When Dolan found out his friend was killed, he escaped so that he could find the killer. But if he didn’t kill McMurtry, then who did? It had to have been the O’Reilly’s and they used McMurtry to draw Dolan out.
Times up for Beckett and Leo as one of Dolan’s kill squad members finds their hiding spot. He busts in and Beckett tries to take him out, but in the twist of all twists, Leo serves up a healthy dose of kung fu ninja, stealing the goon’s gun and then pointing it at Beckett. Say what?!
"What are you doing, Leo?” Beckett demands. “My job,” he slyly reveals.
Turns out Leo was hired by the O’Reillys and was pretending to be a witness this whole time, knowing that if he could somehow get closer to Dolan, he could take him out.
Meanwhile, Castle accuses Dolan of killing McMurtry, which doesn’t sit well with Dolan. They were best friends and he would never do such a thing. He simply wants to find out who actually killed his friend and the “witness” is his only shot.
Leo ties up Beckett and has her make a call to Dolan to arrange a meeting. But first, Beckett wants to know that Castle is OK. As the two talk, Beckett mentions that they, along with Martha and Jim, should go to a baseball game together, since all four of them would love it.
When Leo and Beckett arrive at the meeting spot, they see Dolan’s car and Leo proceeds to shoot multiple rounds inside and a helpless Beckett stands by. Thankfully, no one’s inside since Castle was quick to figure out something was up. Earlier at dinner, Martha made fun of Jim for liking the pastime, so Castle knew Beckett was trying to send him a message. Moments later, the police arrive and duck-taped Beckett wraps her arms around Castle. Case closed.
But there’s still the matter of the tiff war. Back at the precinct, Castle tells Beckett that it doesn’t matter if their parents don’t get along. But seconds later, Jim and Martha are spotted laughing in the hallway and a stumped Caskett looks on. They don’t question anything. They’re just happy to be alive, and to have each other.