Steve's retired colleague Dave 'Hawk' Hawkins is murdered while undercover in the resting home Sunny Meadows. While waiting for Steve to perform an arrest, a vase is smashed onto his skull, expertly staged as a bath-drowning. Director Miss Winkle is most uncooperative, but Steve works out that Hawk was working on a robbery case, involving retiree Bart Ellison who was recently released from jail and still had a $2,000,000 loot, but he dies from an OD. The sleuths' theory being the motive was his hefty inheritance; Mark has himself signed in as retired banker Brinkley by Jesse, who helps Steve look for what Bart spent his ill gotten gains on. Friendly nurse Julie Crane is left a painting as memento; administrator Zanuck steals a valuable timepiece, valued a good replica, then finds a rat attributed to the garbage strike, while Steve researches Zanuck's father was in on the robbery. But then Mark has to blow his cover to perform an emergency tracheotomy...