Cullen reaches the tree-cutting party west of Hell on Wheels and holds a sentry at gunpoint until he discloses that Harper fled north. Cullen tracks Harper down, but he shoots Cullen's horse and escapes again.
Still in her bloodstained dress, Lily tends to Robert's grave. Durant approaches her and announces that her ordeal is over. When Durant marvels at her unexpected arrival, Lily explains that Cullen escorted her to town.
Within Elam's hearing, Mr. Toole boasts about having sex with Eva, claiming that she'll lie with "all manner of beasts and men" but not a black man. Psalms restrains Elam, and Cullen's return prevents a confrontation. Elam asks if Cullen killed Harper but gets no reply.
In the Pullman, The Swede reports to Durant that the payroll is late and promises to have his men guard a shipment of black blasting powder arriving the next day. As he departs, The Swede overhears Durant dictate a telegraph instructing his stockbroker to purchase $147,000 worth of R&R Railroad stock.
Lily tells Durant that someone other than Cullen deserves the reward for her return. She delivers the money to Joseph at the church tent.
Reverend Cole asks Lily to confirm a newspaper account lauding Robert Bell for killing an Indian to save her life. Lily lies about Robert but admits that the story contains other embellishments and falsehoods. Indians will die because of them, contends Cole, pleading with her to correct the record. She declines, reminding Cole that Robert was slaughtered before her eyes.
Cullen, wandering drunkenly through town, burns the picture of the Union soldiers who killed his wife and later blames Elam for Harper’s escape, which was precipitated by Johnson’s murder. Elam maintains that he saved Cullen's life.
In the Pullman with Durant, Lily recalls falling in love with Robert and the American West after hearing him lecture about the topic in London. After she alludes to a falling out between Durant and her husband, Durant dismisses Robert as a starry-eyed dreamer. Lily takes offense, but Durant quickly apologizes and confesses that he too needed Robert.
Outside, Mr. Toole and Elam stare each other down. Eva approaches Elam unseen and offers to take him as a customer, so long as white customers don't find out.
Drinking that night at the Starlight Saloon, Cullen notices that his wife’s needlepoint is missing. Bolan waves it at him, taunting. Cullen punches Bolan in the groin and Bolan pulls a gun on Cullen, but The Swede intervenes and orders Bolan away.
Privately, The Swede professes to know that Cullen killed Johnson, though not why. "Who are you?" The Swede wonders, before bribing Cullen to turn a blind eye when The Swede's men steal part of the black powder shipment. Cullen demands more money before agreeing.
Elam and Eva have sex in a train car. Afterward, she describes being sold to Indians for three blankets and a horse. The two discuss being marked as slaves, she with her chin tattoo and he with his master's name, but conclude with a laugh that they now belong to no group.
In the Pullman with Lily, Durant speculates that Robert discovered the easiest route through the Rocky Mountains. "You must have been crushed," Lily says dryly, when Durant laments the fact that she did not arrive with Robert’s maps.
Henri sings a French song, "Jamais Je Ne T'oublierai" (I Will Never Forget You). Outside, Cullen stumbles past the Pullman. Meanwhile, Eva plies her trade while thinking of Elam, who is elsewhere thinking of her. Mickey stares, sobbing, at a slide of Ireland, and The Swede, naked, scrubs his floor. Later, alone, Durant holds the locket of Lily, who lies in bed with her thoughts. At the cathouse, Cullen stumbles into a room with a very young prostitute and hands her The Swede’s bribe money before kissing her forehead and leaving.
On the street, Reverend Cole chides Cullen for drinking and credits Jesus with washing away Cole's own wickedness. The reverend describes participating in a Bleeding Kansas massacre, butchering slave owners as a follower of the abolitionist John Brown. Cole was like Cullen, he confesses, though at least he had a cause. "What is yours?" Cole asks.
Elam wakes Cullen to ask for black powder to blow up a hill, adding that Cullen needs to start acting like a foreman and lead. Hung over and annoyed, Cullen says, "I ain't your master," and tells Elam to figure things out for himself.
Mickey's business idea turns out to be charging men to peek at the whores bathing. Nell, the “Boss-Whore,” chases everyone away.
In the Pullman, Lily rifles through Durant's papers until he arrives. Covering, she professes herself inspired by Durant's passion "for this great enterprise." Charmed, Durant agrees to give her "the grand tour" of his railroad-building operation.
An explosion blasts out the Pullman's windows. Cullen jumps out of bed. On the street, he notices Bolan trapped under a cart's wheel. Ignoring The Swede's warning to evacuate the area immediately, Cullen rescues Bolan. Seconds later, the cart explodes.
The workers form a bucket brigade to douse the fires, and Lily assists Cullen as he attends to a wounded man. As the situation stabilizes, Cullen orders all able-bodied men back to work. "We've got a hill to move!" he shouts.