Hope comes in strange forms, and the question of what the men are willing to do to survive begins to be settled in both noble and horrifying ways.
In London, Charles Dickens is speaking at the London Cultural Society and introduces Sir John's wife, Lady Jane, who speaks with the audience regarding the missing expedition and how she would like donors to finance a rescue party.
Back at camp, the men are recovering from the Tuunbaq's attack earlier and, despite the large number of dead and missing, continue to move south. Fitzjames tries to tow one of the sledges along with the men, but collapses due to his worsening health. Crozier has him ride one of the sledges, instead.
Hickey and his men set up camp and after Hickey kills one of their own, he forces Goodsir (who was abducted during the attack) to prepare the corpse so it may be cannibalized. Crozier's men are malnourished and dying of lead poisoning and Fitzjames's pain gets to the point where he can no longer bear it and requests to be euthanized. After his death, Thomas Blanky reveals to Crozier his leg stump had become gangrenous and he volunteers to lure the Tuunbaq away from the rest of the survivors. In the process, he accidentally stumbles across the Northwest Passage.
Later, one of Crozier's men reports to have spotted open water and volunteers to lead him and others to its location. However, it turns out to be a trap, as the man had defected to Hickey's men earlier and they've come to kidnap Crozier. Meanwhile, Blanky is sitting out in the wastes, covered in forks wrapped with rope which he requested from Crozier earlier. The Tuunbaq appears and Blanky greets the creature with a grinning face and laughter before he is killed.
- This episode and the previous one were named for passages in the "Peglar Papers".