While looking into the case that destroyed Neal’s (Matt Bomer) family and his father’s (Treat Williams) career as a police officer, Neal and Peter begin an investigation into Senator Pratt (Titus Welliver). Not only do they believe Pratt is one of the a former dirty cops who was on the Flynn’s payroll, but it’s also highly likely he is the man responsible for Ellen’s (Judith Ivey) death. While Peter gets the measure of the man, Neal uses his charm to get a look at the Senator’s itinerary from his attractive assistant which allows Diana (Marsha Thomason) to place a bug on the man’s phone.
With a limited time frame of 48-hours, the concerns of an anxious wife (Tiffani Thiessen), and Hughes’ (James Rebhorn) blessing, Peter begins surveillance of the Senator during his time in New York. Looking into Pratt’s relationship with a dirty construction magnate (Reed Diamond) gives Peter a lead, but it also earns him a trip to the emergency room when his car is tampered with causing an accident and a plea from Elizabeth to Neal to do whatever it takes to keep Peter safe, even if that means lying to him or cutting him out of the more dangerous aspects of the investigation.
With Peter in the hospital with a broken arm and a concussion, Neal goes undercover as an architect to prove the Senator’s friend is running a scam by swapping out inexpensive materials for what’s on his paperwork filed with the city planner’s office and pocketing the difference (nearly $150 million dollars worth). Although the FBI is able to take down Edwards the man refuses to cut a deal and rollover on Pratt forcing Neal to take matters into his own hands. This only infuriates Pratt who decides to flex his political muscles by getting Hughes reassigned and increasing Peter’s motivation to take the Senator down.
In Ellen’s belongings Neal discovers a key, but to discover what it unlocks he’ll need the help of Mozzie (Willie Garson) who takes Jones (Sharif Atkins) on a trip down the rabbit hole involving one of Mozzie’s oldest friends (Peter Scolari), a riddle, and a sacrifice of one of Mozzie’s most treasured possessions. The riddle of the true meaning of the key gives the show a new ongoing mystery to solve, and even if Elizabeth’s request feels far too forced in creating an awkward split between the show’s two leading men, it does allow for sequence of events putting Neal and Peter in competition and back at cross purposes while the both search for the skyline which will lead them to whatever the key unlocks.