The episode begins with the band Holy Shemp excited about the reviews they got on their last night’s performance. Their lead guitarist James isn’t around and so the singer, Keith, goes to get him from his van, assuming that he is still sleeping. He also takes a camera crew inside for funs sake. But fun filled smile turns into a terrified cry for help when he sees James lying dead on the floor. Ryan and Kate arrive and Kate wants Ryan to lose the cameras. They are not press, but a crew which is shooting a documentary movie of the band. Hank Rogers, one of the roadies, informs Ryan of the same.
Lanie tells them that the TOD is between 12 and 2 in the night and the murder weapon seems to be the guitar. Roger tells Ryan that the ‘flame top’ was James’ favorite guitar and he dropped it in the van last night as James liked to compose on it and it was around 11.30. Roger also says that he saw a white van hanging around but he couldn’t get the number plates. Esposito meets the director of the crew and tells him to get rid of the cameras. But he director tells him that with James gone no one is going to care for this movie and so he needs to reinvent the whole thing as a thriller. Esposito talks to the producer. In the van, they hear a noise coming from the closet and they open it to find a girl inside it. She was barely wearing any clothes.
She tells Kate and Castle that she wanted to meet James for the past six months and couple of nights before they got together and they met every night since then. She says that she doesn’t remember anything from the murder as she had passed out because of partying hard during the show. Her name is Butterfly. She says that she heard the noise of horse hooves crunching on snow. She says that James used to complain a lot about the boys from the band but last night, he seemed very happy. The director walks in with an order that they are allowed to shoot and Gates tells Kate that the City Hall thinks it is good PR. Kate then talks to the band members to get their statements. Keith remembers about James being paranoid a month ago and talking about tightening their security.
Zeke tells them that James blew off their one o’clock sound meeting and then showed up at six and that he had also ditched the camera guy on purpose. So whatever he was doing, he didn’t want anyone to know. Esposito the shows Kate and Castle the video footage from a month back and points out to a guy. He is present in the recent pictures as well and the picture that was taken the previous day as well. But in this one, he was leaning on a white van. This means that James had a stalker. Ryan and Esposito go the address the pull up from the plates and they manage to arrest the stalker; well Esposito does a movie style arrest for the camera. Ryan checks the van and finds some objects which do give rise to suspicion. They bring him to the office.
Esposito is really into the movie thing. They then interrogate the stalker and he says that the blood on his overalls is his and not James’. Esposito is really tough n this guy and he says, that all he wanted was his little girl. He did not kill anybody. He says that she quit her job to become a part of the crew and he was afraid of bad things happening to her. His daughter’s name is Butterfly. Guess the team can help him with that one. Ryan tells Kate that the stalker was telling the truth. And the blood also was his. But Esposito tells them that since the stalker was following James, he knows where he went that afternoon. He went into a bank. Castle thinks that he wanted the money to buy drugs. But Lanie calls Kate to the morgue and tells her that James was a clean rockstar. In fact he was never given any vaccination since his childhood. Kate wants to find out why he was never vaccinated.
Esposito arrives and tells the team that James went to the building to meet Sam Spear who has an outstanding lawsuit against the band. It was because Sam thinks that James stole one of his songs for the band. It seems that James withdrew 25,000 from the bank. And Sam bought a ticket for last night’s show. Time to pay Sam a visit! Esposito and Castle go to the building and they hear gun shots and women screaming from Sam’s apartment. Well, that is just a movie!! Sam says that James wanted him to write songs for him and that he was going to give him half the publishing for the songs. So why would he kill him? He also doesn’t know about the 25k. Now the question is why did James not want his band members to know about Sam? That is because, he was going solo! It could be possible that the band members would have confronted him and one of them killed him.
Kate and Castle go to the place where the band is practicing and they tell Keith that he knew about James going solo as his girlfriend who works at the record label had told him about James. He gets pissed and leaves. The sound made by his shoes resemble to the horse hooves Butterfly heard in the van. Kate interrogates Keith. He says that he did go the van but after he cleared things with James, he went back to his trailer and spent the rest of the night with a girl. He feels that James had changed since Ithaca. He doesn’t know her name but he gives them the video he shot while they were having sex. The team verifies the time stamp. The alibi checks out. Ryan tells the team that there are no records for James to be found; nothing. The first record is from Ithaca, NY, where he was admitted for a car accident.
So, why does Ithaca keep coming up? That is because he grew up there and that to in a cult. That explains why he wasn’t vaccinated. The only way to leave was to escape. Every member has a tattoo “SERVE” on their forearm. Castle points out to James’ tattoo which says “OBSERVE”. This means he would have added the OB after he joined the band. So when the band played in Ithaca, he was afraid that someone had recognized him. Ryan tells them that the leader of the cult is John Campbell and he is a psycho with a violent past and he flew into JFK two days ago. Kate manages to get the contact of a woman who escaped from the cult compound. Caroline tells them that Campbell was furious when James escaped. And Ryan tells the team that James had gone to visit Campbell the day he was killed.
Caroline tells them where they can find Campbell and Kate and Castle go to that place. They find him and bring him for interrogation. But he tells them that he did not kill James. He says that James might have made a contribution to the church but he wouldn’t discuss that. When Kate tries to push him, he says that they could arrest him if they have a case; else he would sue them if they ever try to make contact again. Later, Gates tells Kate and Castle that the director has agreed to send her all the footage for the review. Kate is worried as she feels that the camera might have caught her and Castle together. They talk to the director. Esposito then tells the duo that they found a missing persons report in Ithaca the day the band left the place.
The report was filed for Buck Cooper and it was filed by James. According to Caroline, Buck was James’ best friend. Caroline has sent a picture and it is Roger, the roadie Ryan spoke to. They talk to Buck and he tells them that James paid Campbell so that he would leave them alone and Buck wanted to make sure of this by himself. So he was with Campbell when James was killed. Buck tells them that James told him that he was going to make things right for him by giving him a job in the band; after all he was the one who taught James to play the guitar. Castle infers that if he was planning to get Buck into the band that means someone would be out. Who would that be? He checks a song and wonders who could play a particular part well. They bring in Zeke and we see that he cannot play that part.
Kate says that his clothes that he sent for dry cleaning had James’ blood on it. Zeke admits his crime. He says that after all the time he gave to the band; James calls him to his van and tells him to leave the band. Next, Keith arrives at the station on learning about Zeke and he asks Buck if he wants to audition. Gates calls Kate and Castle to her office. She is upset about the way Castle was mocking her while she was talking to the camera. Esposito, Keith and Buck are playing the new song and Kate manages to lock the camera crew in the store room. The episode ends.