Nucky travels to Ireland with Owen, supposedly to bury his father but actually to deliver weapons to McGarrigle in exchange for Irish whiskey. Alas, McGarrigle up and decides to negotiate a truce with the English that would render Nucky's contribution useless. But things aren't so different across the pond than they are in Atlantic City, and you can always count on someone to want war more than peace. As such, McGarrigle's inglorious end is arranged and Nucky is told he'll be dealing with other IRA bosses from here on out. For his part, Nucky is more concerned that Owen was in on the plot than anything else and tells him yet again, "I don't like secrets." Strike two, Slater.
Back in AC, Jimmy -- drunk with power -- finks on Manny so that Waxey Gordon will make that pesky $5,000 debt go away. Clearly this plan is faulty from the start, and it ends with Manny laying a cleaver into the would-be assassin's head -- that's after he's shot in the shoulder, mind you -- then lifting a Matchbook from Atlantic City off of the poor bastard. With yet another hit commissioned by Jimmy gone awry, it's clear the new King of the Boardwalk is in way over his head. Post-botch job, Jimmy attends the live broadcast of the Dempsey-Carpentier fight and receives a note: "Watching you closely." In fact, it's from a bunch of slutty mob groupies, but Jimmy would be dumb schmuck (to use a bit of Manny's parlance) if he didn't see the greater implications.
In also-rans, Emily develops polio, which Margaret takes as a sign of divine retribution for her sins. Dunn Purnsley returns, still bruised but as feisty as ever, and allies himself with Chalky to plant the seeds of discontent that will lead to the black workers' strike. And Esther Randolph's people easily discern that the coffin Nucky carried to Ireland didn't hold his dead father. They call in Halloran and drill him as far back as Hans Schroeder, which yields no fruit at present but clearly makes the point that Esther means business and the walls are closing in on Atlantic City's underworld.
Previously: Nucky made plans for a black workers' strike, and then planned to vacate his position as county treasurer and head out of town -- to Ireland. Jimmy inherited Atlantic City and immediately got way too big for his britches, including but not limited to throwing Mickey Doyle off a balcony.
Belfast. Nucky and Owen arrive, ostensibly to bury Nucky's father. The border agent asks, "Accident, was it?" Nucky tells him natural causes. The agent clarifies that he's asking about Nucky's hand. Nucky half-smiles, "Got caught in the wrong cookie jar." The border agent is all, "Noted," and gives Owen the stink eye.
Back in Atlantic City, Margaret gets the telegram that Nucky arrived. Katy is gobsmacked about the marvels of modern travel and whatnot, but Margaret basically tells her to keep it in her pants. Excitement and/or enthusiasm on Margaret's end wouldn't foster their warped power dynamic at all. Lillian walks down the stairs and reports that Emily is refusing to get out of bed. Margaret tells her to start with Teddy's bath while she checks it out. Margaret heads upstairs and is playful with Emily, who insists, "I can't move... I can't move my legs." Margaret frantically checks her legs and tells Emily to wiggle her toes, but Emily is paralyzed. A mother's nightmare. Margaret tells Katy to call for the doctor while she tries to put on a brave face for Emily.
Elsewhere, Jimmy meets Remus while Lucky, Lansky, and Al sit in. Remus is immediately unimpressed that they're taking this meeting in Jimmy's home, but Jimmy assures, "I'm looking for an office." (I'm sure it didn't help that Jimmy called him "sir" to begin with.) Remus passes third-person pleasantries about the Shore, but Jimmy has no finesse whatsoever, so he cuts to the chase: Whiskey. Remus tells him it's medicinal, and Jimmy drolls, "Turns out, we got a lot of sick people in this town." Chimes in Mickey (who's in a neck brace from Jimmy's balcony antics), "Practically an epidemic." Ha! Remus goes through the mumbo jumbo about how he can only sell to sanctioned buyers, yadda yadda, then slips in that he's not responsible for what happens to the booze on the truck from point A to B. Long story short, he wants money and the pups are prepared to fork it out. Three hundred grand for 500 cases, plus a weekend in AC for Remus.
Once Remus makes his exit, Mickey imagines how well they could do for himself with the haul... "if we do things right." (There's the tricky part -- especially with Jimmy.) Says Al cockily, "So we don't do things wrong." Lansky can't help but mention that Jimmy still owes Manny five large. Jimmy clearly has no intention, which says a lot that he's about to throw down 60 grand for a liquor run but won't with five Gs for a debt he genuinely owes. Mickey suggests Jimmy ameliorate his debt by cutting Manny in on the Remus deal, but Jimmy says with the hollow authority he's acquired of late, "I'll take care of it." "You're the Grand Poobah," says Mickey with the acquiescence or someone who got thrown off a balcony but the edge of someone who also doesn't believe Jimmy can handle this thing for a second. Because, let's face it, do you think he can? Number one, you don't fuck with Manny. Number two, you don't fuck with Manny. And number three, Jimmy is all brute force, with very little strategic insight. Al's proposition, "So we don't do things wrong," depends on a lot of moving parts, is all I'm saying. As the fellows disperse, Lansky invites Jimmy down to Jersey City to see the Dempsey-Carpentier fight. Jimmy doesn't think he can take two nights away and says he plans to listen on the wireless. He mocks Remus, "Darmody wants to see what all the fuss is about." As the others leave, he lets Mickey's "Grand Poobah" sink in, and you know he's not going to miss that fight.