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Season 1, Episode 17:

Baby Blue

Don Gianni Morretti is being released from prison and Carter thinks it was arranged by Elias, so that he can make a move on his Mafia father. Reese tags along with Carter and they're able to intervene when a hit squad tries to kidnap Morretti; she and a police captain, one of the few cops Carter trusts, take the Don to a secret safehouse in the city for his protection. While Reese is occupied, Finch investigates the newest number, a woman named Leila Smith whose social security number was only registered six months ago. He tracks Leila to a hospital and discover that she's only a six-month old baby who was delivered anonymously. A pair of killers disgused as nurses show up looking for the baby, so Finch, seeing no other option, kidnaps Leila. Now with the added pressure of having to take care of a baby, Finch and Reese work to track down Leila's real family and discover that she's the daughter of a wealthy industralist and his former cleaning lady who was murdered by the same killers.

Fusco is approached by HR's representative, Officer Simmons, and ordered to get Morretti's location out of Carter. He trails Carter and discovers the safehouse, but tells Simmons he didn't find anything. Finch tries to leave Leila safely with her grandparents, but the killers find her and take the child. None of their contacts know who's behind the kidnapping, and with only a matter of hours before the killers attempt to get rid of the child, Reese uses the burner phone to call Elias and enlist his help, appealing to his experiences as an orphaned child. Elias tells Reese where to go and he's able to recover Leila, but at the last moment he's double-crossed and thrown in the back of a freezer truck along with the baby. With only minutes before the cold will cause permenant damage to Leila, Reese reluctantly gives in to Elias' demands and tells him where to find Morretti. Elias keeps his word and frees Reese, who gets word to Finch and Carter that the safehouse has been compromised, but it's too late: when they arrive, the police captain has been shot and Morretti is gone. As a result, Carter refuses to work with Reese and Finch.

Tropes present in this episode include

  • Cuteness Proximity: Compared to their usual stoic selves, Reese and Finch go positively gooey over Leila.
  • Deal with the Devil: Reese goes to Elias for help in recovering Leila.
  • Decoy Damsel: A woman by the side of the road with a broken leg is used to lure Morretti into an ambush.
  • Door Step Baby: Leila Smith is one.
  • If You're So Evil Eat This Kitten: Fusco's loyalty to HR is tested when he's ordered to find where Carter is hiding Morretti.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Elias crosses it by threatening Leila's life.
  • Occam's Razor: Finch fails to apply this to Leila at the beginning of the episode. He thinks she's either in witness protection or someone with the resources to get data inserted into the Social Security database due to the fact that her SSN has only existed for six months. The real explanation is much simpler - Leila's SSN only came into existence six months previously because that's when she came into existence.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Elias, though he claims otherwise.
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