A sniper is shooting what seems to be random victims from far distances. The victims all purchase their coffee at the same coffee shop, linking the victims to a homeless man that has been hanging around.
The shooter is leaving paper dolls cut from a painting magazine to identify the location of the next shooting. After a third victim is shot, the paper dolls turn into several. The next target is a school bus carrying a sports team.
Beckett struggles throughout the case, her PTSD extremely high. Castle gives her space and Esposito takes the reigns on helping her.
The figure out that the shooter is a former marine who was discharged after losing his leg. The discover the building he will be shooting out of for the school bus and Kate tracks down the room.
She goes in and explains to Lee Travis, the sniper, that she is just like him after he pulls a gun on her. Esposito shoots him from the neighboring building.
Kate goes to talk with her therapist again and lets him know that this isn’t just PTSD, it goes back to her mother’s death and she is afraid to let her down. Her therapist tells her she can’t let her down and Kate confides that she is ready to move on and be more than who she is.