Attempting to find his daughter, Joseph Adama re-enters New Cap City. His guide, Emanuelle. prepares Joseph for the ugly truths of the game, and equips him with a gun and a digital performance enhancement drug - amp - to improve his reaction time and increase his brutality.
Daniel Graystone, also seeking his daughter, is pursuing his breakthrough discovery that Zoe's avatar exists within the U-87. In a desperate attempt to communicate with her, Daniel presses her with a story of their burning home, and the fire that almost killed her - but to no avail.
Joseph and Emanuelle seek Tamara at the New Cap equivalent of the Adama home, but the apartment is inhabited by a drug addict - an "amphead". As the druggie yields the information that Joseph's daughter is at a club called "Mysteries," a gang of drug dealers bust in on the scene and threaten to end Adama's New Cap life. Feigning innocence, Emanuelle claims not to know Adama, and as the gangsters are focused on Joseph, deftly takes out the whole team with her pistol. Joseph is relieved, but she berates him for freezing up - if he can't pull the trigger when he needs to, he'll never be able to help his daughter.
Amanda, still troubled by visions of her long-dead brother, returns to the scene of the fatal crash in an attempt to unravel the mystery, only to see an even more vivid apparition of her brother driving away. Later, as Amanda unburdens her heart to Clarice, the teacher deepens her plot to find Zoe's avatar by manipulating Amanda to fixate on her dead daughter.
As Daniel's desperation increases, so do his methods. Playing on Zoe's traumatic fear of fire, he commands the U-87 to stand still as he constructs a blazing pyre around her. She can end the torture and reveal her presence by simply walking out. Although Zoe is agonized by her terrifying memories and the current distress her father is inflicting, she does not reveal herself.
Joseph is visited by his brother, Sam, who reprimands him for the sad state he's fallen into. Joseph merely responds by pressing his brother about how he's able to convince himself to murder, which Sam reveals: You have to think of it as a game. Reinvigorated, Joseph ventures to Mysteries, where he sees a sign: His daughter's initials in her own handwriting. He doses himself with more amp and goes on a killing spree, only to learn that his daughter has come and gone. He and Emanuelle leave the club and find the streets covered with Tamara's symbol. Emanuelle nudges Joseph to abandon the quest.
In a surprise visit to the Graystone house, Tomas Vergis relate to Amanda the gruesome tale of the death of his employees and the theft of the MCP. Amanda stands with her husband, but the news troubles her.
Meanwhile, Daniel presents a final test: Placing a loaded gun in the U-87's hand, he orders it to shoot his dog. Zoe masters her revulsion and carries out the orders. Frustrated and tearful, Daniel cedes the game, and reveals that the gun was loaded with blanks.
Ascension, a three night event, premieres on December 15 at 9/8c
Get a sneak peek at the next episode of Z Nation, airing Friday at 10/9c on Syfy
Count all of this episode's zombie kills along with us.