Synopsis by Josh Ralske
Al (Ian McShane) is apparently suffering from kidney stones, and his health has worsened to the point where he cannot speak. He has locked himself in his office, and writhes on the floor in agony as his minions knock and deliver news, uncertain as to what to do. Francis Wolcott (Garret Dillahunt, who played Jack McCall in season one) arrives in the camp, looking to buy gold claims, and is immediately taken for a fish by E.B. (William Sanderson), who offers to sell Wolcott the last letter written by Wild Bill Hickok, falsely claiming that it makes reference to a massive find. Maddie (Alice Krige) knows precisely who Wolcott is, and tells Joanie (Kim Dickens), who is dismayed to learn that Maddie had a hidden motive for coming to Deadwood. Wolcott is a "specialist" who has a particular fondness for one of Maddie's girls, and who has been known to become violent with whores. He is also a talented geologist in the employ of the ruthless and powerful mining magnate George Hearst, and it's clear that Maddie plans to use his perverse interests against him. Alma (Molly Parker) tells Ellsworth (Jim Beaver) that she's thinking of buying E.B.'s hotel, mainly because she despises E.B. and would like to see him out in the street. She also decides to fire Miss Isringhausen (Sarah Paulson), complaining about the young woman's "air of disapproval." Trixie (Paula Malcomson) asks Sol (John Hawkes) to teach her accounting. Wolcott enlists both E.B. and Cy (Powers Boothe) to circulate rumors about the validity of the camp's gold claims.