Meanwhile, Megan's busy watching herself in the security camera footage, probably because she's horrified that she went out in public dressed as she did. Oh, Megan, wait until you see yourself later. Speedle comes in and asks if Megan had beeped him -- what, she sics Calleigh on him, and now she's going to beep him? If she wants the results that damn badly, she should hop off her high horse and walk down to the lab herself. Megan asks if it was a 4-1-1- beep; Speedle confirms it. Megan explains, "It means I've got info. Your hull ID number? Got us a registration and a name. Captain Robert Morton. Talked to the marina manager." Speedle asks if the manager gave Megan anything. "A migraine," she replies. Welcome to our world, Megan. She continues, "As long as the captain's check clears every month, he's the second cousin to Peter Rabbit?" So does that make him Flopsy, Mopsy, or Cottontail? Then Megan directs Speedle to "find a seat, get comfortable, and watch every frame from the last two days. See if the captain shows his face." Speedle is not too cool with this; he follows Megan out and asks, "Did you, uh, did you clear this with H? 'Cause I'm supposed to be working on the note." Megan sidesteps the question by saying, "Don't worry about Horatio." Speedle persists, "It's unclear if I'm working for him or I'm working for you." Megan once again sidesteps the issue and gives a hasan chop as she says, "You work [beat] for the victim." "Well, is the victim the one doing my annual evaluation, then? 'Cause I'd really love to know exactly who I'm reporting to, and you can skip the avoid-the-question routine and just admit that you're out to undermine Horatio's job, Megan," Speedle replies. In my dreams. Megan walks off, looking for all the world like she's just rolled out of bed, and answers her cell phone. She listens as the camera pulls closer to her, and after asking Horatio's whereabouts -- presumably so she can make sure he's nowhere around, thus leaving her clear to pretend she's still the boss -- promises the person on the other end that she'll be right there.
"Right there," as it turns out, is an area under a dock. Megan's plans for middle-management domination are foiled by Horatio's presence, but she gets a dead girl floating in an inner tube as a consolation prize. Alexx is already there, perched on the side of a life raft and snapping photographs. Horatio hunkers down and nails the girl's point of origin by noting, "Cyrillic lettering. The Russians have been forever dumping their second-rate surplus on their island friends." Does that surplus include all those gymnasts and ice skaters who fail to medal in the Olympics? Because I'd love to see that. Alexx tells everyone, "This girl's been shot in the leg. Very close to the femoral artery. Bled out." And yes, she did mispronounce femoral, but that's a small quibble relative to the others I will have about this episode. So long as I'm nitpicking, however, why is Alexx back in white? Doesn't she ever get unwanted blood stains on the job? We establish that there is no exit wound in the female bleeder, and that there is a tourniquet tied above the wound, which indicates that someone tried to save her. As Alexx cradles the body (in her white tank top, which is miraculously unspotted), she notes, "Injury like this, she would have been dead in under thirty minutes. There's no evidence of sunburn or exposure." There's also no evidence of shark-like snack attacks. I realize that not all sharks are scavengers, but nor are they late sleepers, and I find it hard to believe someone bleeding to death in the middle of the ocean wouldn't have attracted some attention, especially after that shark-cam close-up we got about fifteen minutes ago. I don't expect the episode to be an assiduously accurate representation of forensic science, but would it be too much to ask for consistency within the narrative premise for each episode? Would it? Does that go on the wish list along with Megan's transfer to Minneapolis for a third CSI spin-off? Anyway -- the finest minds in Miami/Dade deduce that the floating woman was on the drug boat that gave us corpselet #1. Then Horatio notices something around the girl's neck. Megan reads, "La Caridad del Cobre," which translates to "the Virgin of Charity." As Horatio notes, she is the patron saint of Cuba (declared so in 1916 by Pope Benedict). Megan tells us, "Families in Miami send them to their relatives [beat] as a good-luck piece for the journey." Horatio shows us what he thinks of religious icons by pointing out, "And that ninety miles of open ocean will take that luck away from you in two seconds." Megan's inspecting the medallion, and she notes that it's made by hand: "Old-school, with a palm-push graver." For those of us who don't spend our free time engraving, a palm-push graver consists of a point set into a wooden handle that fits neatly in your palm; the purpose of the tool is to give you control as you etch metal. We see this before Megan notes, "Tonal variations [beat], there's only one or two guys in Little Havana who do this bulino work." And again, for those of us who are not busy carving medallions in our spare time, bulino engraving is the practice of etching high-definition images via (you guessed it) a tool such as a palm-push graver. Horatio points out that the odds of a bulino engraver helping them out can be described in two ways -- slender or nonexistent.
In the next scene, Alexx has repaired to the morgue for a lively chat with her latest workplace diversion while Horatio stands at the end of a dock and broods out into the water. Megan comes up behind him, and Horatio explains the title of this episode by saying, "Wet foot, dry foot. All a Cuban immigrant has to do is touch U.S. soil and they're here. Unless, of course, the Coast Guard picks you up out there, on the water, and sends you back to Fidel." Megan hops on the broodwagon and says, "If she'd made it to dry land, she'd have gone through 72 hours of processing and [beat] walked with a green card." Horatio muses on Fortuna, that importunate bitch, with, "She almost made it." Megan replies, "She didn't count [beat] on getting shot." Evidently, Horatio's finished his midday brooding, as he now turns to Megan and asks, "You ready to play politics?" Horatio, I recommend you check in at the office, and you'll find out just how ready Megan is with the politics.