Sidney is the only friend Gary Bell has left as he waits for news about whether he will be offered a reprieve. Sidney is determined that whatever his fate, he will stand by his side – even if certain members of the village object. Meanwhile, Geordie and Phil visit the hospital where Rita Jones [Tanya Franks] recovers from the latest beating dealt out by her violent husband Eddie [Matthew Jure]. But with her children needing a breadwinner, Rita refuses to press charges. Rita's eldest son lets the two detectives into the hovel they call a family home. When they discover some recently stolen goods, it appears they finally have all they need to collar Eddie. But the man doesn't go quietly, fighting with Phil and winding up Geordie as he's carted to the cells. The next morning, Geordie's wife Cathy calls on Sidney: Geordie didn't come home last night. And when Sidney arrives at the station he finds his friend with his knuckles bruised, and Eddie, dead on a stretcher.
When DCI Benson questions Geordie's innocence, Sidney leaps to his friend's defence. But Geordie has been behaving strangely of late, and no one else can verify his whereabouts when Eddie was killed. At the vicarage, Leonard and Mrs Maguire are at each other's throats as an ill judged remark about Mrs Maguire's love life, and the accidental loss of some sentimental postcards leaves both feeling raw and misunderstood.
As Gary Bell waits to discover his fate, Sidney seeks to avoid a further injustice taking place. But as he digs deeper he finds himself questioning precisely whether he really knows Geordie as well as he thought. Could Geordie have beaten Eddie to death? Will Sidney keep the faith in his friend? And will Gary avoid the hangman's noose?