This week starts with a murder -- with Carter and Fusco at the scene before we even know who the episode's Number is. Turns out the Number is the witness to the murder at a Brighton Beach bodega, so JC and Bench immediately assume they need to protect him. NYPD assumes the same thing. And, soon enough, it's clear the guy, a teacher played by Enrico Colantoni, is being chased by both the Russian gangs and Elias and his henchmen (did you know he goes by Elias? And that he has henchmen? I didn't either). JC does a lot of kicking people's butts and saving the teacher, eluding all the mobsters and gangsters and everyone else. They get a little help from a school kid, too, who saves the teacher because he's the best teacher the kid's ever had. Just so you know how awesome the teacher is, this after-school special stuff goes on and on and on. I wonder if this could be foreshadowing anything? Hmmm.
Anyway, with the help of the school kid, JC and the teacher eventually escape, with Enver Gjokaj as a hostage. They're headed to a ferry, and Bench calls Fusco to send him to meet them at Pier 11, so he can take in Enver and protect the witness. But Elias quickly learns about the meet-up, and Bench overhears his bad cop sending someone that way. He automatically assumes Fusco's a rat, but Elias's guy shows up and punches Fusco out. On the ferry ride, meanwhile, Enver wonders why JC is protecting such a bad dude. JC wonders what he's talking about, but before Enver can reveal too much, Enrico pulls the gun on JC and asks him not to make him shoot him. You see, he's Elias, and he's been undercover as a teacher to learn about his enemies -- La Costa Nostra -- so he can take over their turf (and resume his rightful place as the rightful son of mob boss Don Moretti). He's not all bad, though. He only shoots Enver in the leg, and doesn't shoot JC at all (instead, he offers him a job). He gets away, though, and JC's all torn up about not just letting him go, but saving his life -- putting probably many more Numbers on their list. (I must admit, it is a little weird that in all of New York City, half the Numbers so far have somehow pertained to the whole Elias scenario. Not that any of this is "realistic," but that tests even the limits of the show's premise.)
You know the drill: You're being watched, thanks to Bench's brilliant invention and the Patriot Act. This episode once again starts with a surveillance recording that should mean something to us later. This one is a conversation between two guys. One says, "The call came in. We have a location on the target." The other, with a thick accent: "Get a team and I'll meet you there." First guy says, "We can handle this," then Accent says, "No. I want to be there in person. I want to kill him myself." Surveillance footage shows said murder in a convenience store. Then the episode starts on Carter, watching said surveillance footage in the store when Fusco comes in and snarks about mopping up a bodega shooting. But Carter tells him this was intentional homicide. And there's a witness on the video, too, whom the victim says something to before dying. They figure he'll make himself scarce instead of coming up against the gang who murdered this guy. Carter introduces Fusco to the Geico ad guy, whose name is Detective Szymanski. He's from organized crime, and he fills them in that the victim was a La Costa Nostra lieutenant named Benny who'd been out of the game for a couple years. Sound familiar? Apparently La Costa Nostra had been ordering hits on Russian mob lately (this is Brighton Beach, their territory), and word is this is retribution. And all they know about Benny's boss is his name: Elias. Carter says one of his guys took a shot at her last week (hey, I wonder how that DNA evidence is going?). Is anyone else confused about the fact that last week Elias's guys supposedly killed a La Costa Nostra guy, and this week, he's supposedly their boss? Szymanski says no one even knows what Elias looks like. And back to the witness? No one's been able to find him, and the owner seems to be in on it with the Russians. We all know who the witness is, though: Enrico Colantoni. Carter wants to get to this witness before the Russians do.