At the docks, the William Brown arrives and a man, Barret Rankin, arrives to ask Captain Dan Fitz what happened to the girl. The captain says that she got away, and Barret tells him that he'll be at the club and when Laney brings the girl back, the captain is to hold her.
In the calaboose, Yancy is getting a trim when the Jailer and Pahoo arrives. The Jailer tells Yahoo that his five days is just about up. John comes in and Yancy introduces the Jailer to the city administrator since they've never met. Yancy points out that he's unlikely to escape ten minutes before his sentence is up, and John dismisses the Jailer. Once they're alone, John reminds Yancy that no one can know about their secret arrangement. He asks Yancy to listen out for information on the William Brown, even though there's nothing to support his suspicion that the owner is smuggling.
Once he's out, Yancy goes to the club with Pahoo. Laney chases a woman, Bridget, down the street. Yancy climbs up to a balcony and when Bridget runs by, Pahoo grabs her and lifts her up to Yancy. There's no sign of her by the time Laney catches up, and Pahoo just stares at him. Bridget orders Yancy to put her down, and he drops her down to Pahoo and then jumps down himself. Bridget refuses to talk to Yancy without a formal introduction, and he assures her that Pahoo is "housebroken." She says that she's not in trouble and quickly leaves. As Bridget walks away, Laney grabs her.
At the club, Francine is dealing poker to Yancy and his opponents. Barret is one of them, and the other man folds. Yancy bets $100 on two kings and a hole card, and Barret raises. Yancy raises back and Barret calls. Barret gets a flush on the next card, and Yancy draws to two pair. Yancy bets $500, and Barret figures that he's bluffing. He calls and Yancy reveals his full house, with his deuce in the hole. When Barret implies that Francine helped Yancy cheat, Yancy punches him Barret goes for his gun and Francine draws her derringer on him and tells him to drop the gun. Once Barret leaves, Yancy offers to buy Francine a drink.
At the bar, Yancy notices Francine checking the time. She says that her cousin should have arrived by now, and she came from Ireland to New Orleans to find herself a husband. Francine asks Yancy to find her cousin--Bridget--and Barret overhears them talking. Yancy says that he already met her, and promises to find her.
Yancy and Pahoo go to the docks and tell Fitz that they're looking for one of his passengers. Fitz insists that all of the passengers disembarked that afternoon and claims that he doesn't remember Bridget. Once the two men leave, Laney runs down the gangplank and tells Fitz that Bridget jumped ship again. Fitz tells Laney to find her and then they'll drop her in the Mississippi.
As Yancy stops to light his cigar, Bridgett runs down the street and bumps into him. Laney is chasing her, and she shoves pats Yancy. The thug soon catches up to her, and Yancy comes over and says that Francine sent him to find Bridget. She explains that they hid her when the Customs man came aboard, and Laney says that her papers aren't in order. Yancy seemingly drops the matter, but then signs to Pahoo, who knocks Laney out. Bridget explains that they're saying she owes more money for her passage and are going to send her back. She refuses to go back to Ireland without a spouse, and suggests that Yancy might run into a woman suitable to marry him.
As the trio arrives at the club, Barret hides in the shadows and then shoots Bridget. Pahoo fires a shoot, wounding Barret in the hand, goes after him but Barret escapes in the darkness after dropping his revolver. Yancy takes the wounded Bridget inside to the back parlor. Once the doctor sees to her, Francine comes in and Yancy tells her that Bridget is suffering from shock but will be okay. Bridget mutters about dancing rats, and Yancy says that the shooter meant to kill her and figures that he's from the William Brown.
Later, Pahoo brings John to the docks where Yancy is waiting. According to the captain's log, three out of four passengers and ten crewmen--including the original captain--were lost at sea during the Atlantic crossing, supposedly during a hurricane even though it isn't hurricane season. The cargo is $250,000 worth of Chinese silk, and Yancy asks John to impound the cargo and have the ship tower to the middle of the river. John warns that legally he can't without evidence, and Yancy tells him that he'll get the evidence.
When Bridget wakes up at the club, she finds Francine at her bedside and Pahoo standing guard. She wonders where "the bachelor" is, and asks if he's a "friend" of Yancy's. As Francine assures her that he isn't, Yancy arrives and asks what happened aboard the William Brown. Bridget explains that the thirteen people were buried at sea, and feigns weakness when Yancy pushes her for specifics. He demands the truth, but Bridget fakes a faint. Yancy tells Francine to keep working on her cousin and goes downstairs. John is waiting and says that he wants Yancy to meet with the William Brown's owner at the King Louis: Barret.
Yancy goes to Barret's hotel room and says that he'll soon get the truth from Bridget. He explains that she lived and will talk soon, and draws his gun, and then advises Barret to take his hand out of his pocket. Barret's hand is wounded and Yancy figures that Pahoo wounded it with his shotgun. He hands over Barret's revolver and tells him that it's empty, and Barret promises him that the next time they meet it won't be.
Barret secretly follows Yancy back to the club and fires a shot through a window. Yancy leads Francine out of the room and says that Barret intends to lure them away from Bridget. He draws his derringer and waits until Fitz and Laney sneak into Bridget's room via the balcony. Yancy slams his way in past Laney and shoots Fitz as he prepares to stab Bridget. Pahoo is hiding in the wardrobe and shoots Laney when he goes for his gun. Francine is shocked that Yancy used Bridget as live bait, and Yancy admits that he had to be sure they were after Bridget and not him.
Yancy demands answers from Bridget, and she finally says that every night the rats danced on the deck after the people died. They told her that if she talked then they'd send her back to Ireland. Yancy realizes that Senior once warned him about dancing rats, and realizes that it's bubonic plague. John arrives and Yancy tells him that they need to burn the silk. John admits that he can't authorize the burning but tells Yancy to do it.
Down at the docks, Yancy and Pahoo set the cargo on fire. When a guard tries to stop Yancy, Yancy knocks him out. Barret runs up and shoots, and Yancy returns fire and kills him.
Later, Bridget is making herself up when Yancy opens the door and bumps into her. He, Francine, and Pahoo come in and Bridget explains that she came to America to find a husband. She figures that the Fates let her live, and Yancy admits that he's a little in love with her. However, he admits that he's a little in love with Francine and every beautiful woman in New Orleans. Bridget warns that Yancy won't be getting rid of her so easily, and he smiles and leaves.
Written by Gadfly on Aug 8, 2017