Ken is first seen celebrating his son's upcoming graduation from Princeton University and assures his son he always believed he was smart enough to graduate, but was always afraid he wouldn't have the money to pay his tuition. He makes him promise not to drink too much so they can attend the ceremony the following day. However, Carnell goes to a bar with his friends, where he starts suffering symptoms.
Ken meets his son in the hospital. He told the doctors he works in construction so his son will be treated better, fearing if he tells him he's a salvage operator they will think he can't afford the care his son is getting.
When the doctors bring up the subject of the death of Carnell's mother, Carnell finds out that she died in a single car accident and not from being hit by a drunk driver. He realizes Ken lied to him about it.
Ken has always forbidden his son from taking gifts from his rich friends at school, so Carnell has to get him out of the room to tell the doctors that one of his friends flew them down to Jamaica on spring break.
Eventually, Carnell has to tell his father about the trip to Jamaica. His father is angry with him, both for lying to him about needing to study as well as probably getting sick from something on the trip.
The team believes that Jamaica was the source of the disease when Carnell's friend Taddy is admitted with similar symptoms. House starts talking to Taddy about what might have caused their illness and asks why he brought Carnell along with them. Taddy says he felt sorry for Carnell always having to go home to work in his father's salvage yard on breaks. House is surprised that Carnell's father runs a salvage yard, but realizes that something may have caused everyone's illness.
House asks Ken if he ever gave Carnell anything that looked like a plumb bob. Ken says he did - he found it and gave it to Carnell as a paperweight. House has his team find it in a drawer in Carnell's room and shows it is highly radioactive. Carnell had been carrying it around and Taddy was exposed when he shared a room and flight with Carnell.
Ken also has to be treated for radiation sickness, but Carnell's condition is far more serious. They realize the radiation has caused a cavernous adenoma in Carnell's spine that will have to be removed. Although the surgery to remove it goes well, Carnell's condition continues to worsen and Chase breaks the news to Ken that Carnell will probably not survive due to his low white blood cell count which has left him succeptible to opportunistic infections.
Ken goes to see Carnell. Carnell asks about his condition. Ken tells him he knows he will pull through. Carnell is skeptical, but Ken insists that he will.