Empire begins with Lucious having lunch with Harper. They flirt and discuss his new music video. Cookie, however, interrupts their lunch, emphasizing that they remain professional. She tells him that they will need to win over The Board, before they elect and outsider as the new CEO of Empire. Elsewhere, at a club Hakeem turns up with his entourage, dancing and performing with strippers, and getting drunk off of champagne. Laura tries to reach him, but he ignores her. The next morning, she tracks him down to the club and demands to know what is going on with him. She tells him she does not care he is no longer the CEO of Empire. He tells her that he got Anika pregnant before they met. She slaps him and leaves! Later that morning, Andre tells her that The Board indeed does plan to hire an outsider. She feels if the Board sees the Lyons united behind Lucious they will accept him back as CEO. She enlists Andre’s aide with helping. He agrees to help her on the condition that they form a charity for mental illness and he comes out as someone who deals with it. Cookie feels it is an excellent idea.
Andre meets with his brothers and tries to talk them into helping Lucious regain his role. Hakeem laments over the current state of his life and having a child on the way. He soon realizes he has hurt Andre. The latter admonishes him for his selfishness and thoughtlessness. He tells him to step up and take control of his life. He encourages Jamal to stand up to Lucious and reminds him of how he treated him when he was younger. Hakeem baby proofs his apartment and then invites Anika over to show her that he is committed to their son. She dismisses his claims and then tells him about Lucious threatening her life after she gives birth. Hakeem confronts Lucious in front of his mother and tells them if anything happens to Anika or his baby that he too will disappear. Cookie reminds Lucious they need the entire family on board to get Empire back. She goes to talk to Anika to smooth things out and finds the paramedics are there wheeling her out. She demands to ride in the ambulance and there gets Anika to calm down when she begins to have a panic attack.
Hakeem tries to make up with Laura, but she ends their engagement and returns his ring. He races to Anika’s side when he learns what has happened. At Empire, Jamal runs into Michael. They agree to go to the coffee house where he use to perform. Jamal tells him that he misses performing there and is invited on stage by the band already playing to perform. Lucious continues to try and win over at the ASAs by discrediting Jamal. He tells Cookie that an exclusive with Harper will put him over the top and sets up a dinner date with her. They almost end up having sex until she bad mouths Cookie. At the hospital, Hakeem tells Anika’s mother he is ready to do right by her and their baby. He promises to make amends. She only allows him to see her daughter, because she is asking for him. When Lucious tries to visit, Hakeem heads him off and demands he back off of Anika. Lucious agrees, impressed with how he tried to take Empire from him. He promises to do everything he can to make things easy for Anika and his grandson. Later, he tells Cookie about Harper and she decides to get him another exclusive to undercut Harper’s.
At the ASA party, The Lyons (minus Hakeem) gather in support of Lucious. Lucious bad mouths Jamal’s album, prompting the latter to abandon him when he overhears him. Harper confronts Lucious about undercutting her exclusive and warns him not to mess with her. She then shows Andre a picture of his grandmother, revealing she is alive and well in a group home. Andre leaves immediately to find her. Cookie announces on stage that soon Lucious, Jamal, and Hakeem will perform on stage together as a family. Jamal returns to the coffee shop and has his own party there. A ton of fans and press attend, even Frieda comes to see him. Later, The Board offers to make Lucious and Cookie co-CEOs. Cookie is hesitant at firrst, but Lucious says he feels it is a good idea.