The episode starts with a Galactic grunt being attacked by Golbat. Then, a Skuntank and Jupiter appeared. The grunt took off his mask, revealing to be Looker. After Skuntank was about to use Slash, there was an explosion. Then, the screen shows Floaroma Town where Forsythia and her Roserade and Lotad watering flowers. In the Pokémon Center, the gang are watching television, learning that the next Pokémon Contest will be held in Daybreak Town, under a Double Performance. Ash and the gang was on Route 205, then Pikachu and Piplup saw something in the flowers. They saw that it was Meowth.
Meowth told them what had happened while Brock heals him with Potion. Team Rocket was walking, feeling hungry, when they saw Team Galactic's helicopter. They chased after it and arrived at a factory which Brock checks on his Pokégear and identifies it as Fuego Ironworks. Team Rocket climbed a ladder and saw Jupiter and a man. Ash and the gang realize that it is Looker. Then, it shows the things earlier and Skuntank about to use Slash. A Vine Whip stopped its attack, belonging to James's Carnivine. Skuntank managed to break free and Jupiter commands the Golbat to attack. That was when the explosion occurred. Jupiter's Skuntank attacked Jessie and James while the Golbat attacked Meowth and sent him blasting off. After being bandaged, Meowth proceeds to return to Fuego Ironworks to help Jessie and James. Ash and the gang want to help too, prompting Piplup and Pikachu to catch up with him but Meowth warns them off with Fury Swipes, refusing to take charity from them and reminding them that they're enemies. Dawn comments that they're actually in this for Looker since he had helped them out a few days earlier on Mt. Coronet.
Back at the Fuego Ironworks, Jessie, James and Looker are locked up inside a prison cell. Jessie saw something on the floor outside the room. It was Jupiter's Skuntank. It looked away after looking at Jessie. Then, Jessie wants to attack it but as she was about to touch the door, Looker warned her but Jessie was soon shocked by electricity. Looker tells Team Rocket that Team Galactic has been secretly using Fuego Ironworks to make something. Meanwhile at Mt. Coronet, Saturn's Toxicroak uses Rock Smash to break down a part of the mountain, revealing a huge, silvery spherical object. The Spear Key reacts to the object, confirming to them that they've finally found the Gateway to the Spear Pillar. The scene then cuts to Jupiter and Charon talking about and receiving new orders to deliver the Red Chain. A Team Galactic Grunt then informs Jupiter and Charon that an unidentified flying object has been detected near the Factory perimeter which turns out to be Ash, Dawn, Brock, Pikachu, Piplup, and Meowth approaching Fuego Ironworks in Meowth's Balloon. Upon being confronted by a group of Golbat, Ash's Pikachu, riding on Staraptor, and Dawn's Pachirisu, riding on Ash's Gliscor, take them out with Thunderbolt and Discharge.
They land on top of a building where Jupiter and Skuntank meet them. Jupiter orders Skuntank to use Flamethrower. Piplup counters with BubbleBeam. Jupiter asks Ash, Dawn and Brock to join Team Galactic. They refuse. Meowth asks about Jessie and James and Ash asks where Looker is. Jupiter doesn't give them any information, but to Dawn she says "Oh, Mesprit", to Ash she says, "Azelf," and to Brock she says, "Uxie." The screen cuts to flashbacks at Lake Verity, Lake Valor, and Lake Acuity. "Why did it have to be you. I'm talking about the lake trio of course. Why is it that they chose you. We were the ones who were supposed to have synchronized with the lake trio." Then a group of Golbat use Air Cutter on Pikachu and Staraptor. Pikachu counters with Thunderbolt while Meowth rushes forward and uses Fury Swipes. Then Skuntank uses Flamethrower and Piplup counters with BubbleBeam. Gliscor and Pachirisu land behind Jupiter and Skuntank and Pikachu and Staraptor land on the side. Jupiter orders a Toxic and they escape in the helicopter. They then look around the Fuego Ironworks for Team Rocket and Looker. In the helicopter Jupiter asks about the Red Chain. Charon assures her it's safe. In the cell Looker comments on how quiet it is outside. Jessie and James say there hungry but Looker quiets them. Ash and Co. run down a hall and Looker calls to Ash. Meowth asks where his "peeps" are, and Jessie and James grab the bars and are shocked. Piplup and Pikachu use BubbleBeam and Thunderbolt on the door and it breaks.
Looker thanks them and Team Rocket reunite then leave. Then Looker, Ash, Dawn, Brock, Pikachu, and Piplup explore the Fuego Ironworks. They come to the place where the Red Chain was and find a shard. Meanwhile, Team Rocket is flying toward Mt. Coronet with full intentions of settling a score with Team Galactic. At the Police Station a machine examines the shard and transmits the data to International Police HQ. But within a few seconds the shard glows and the computer display shows a Charon smiley followed by an explosion. The shard turned out to be some sort of bomb as they receive a call from the International Police informing them that their entire database had been wiped out during the analysis. Looker departs from the station infuriated by the setback and the scene cuts to Team Galactic on their way to the Spear Pillar with the Adamant Orb, Lustrous Orb, and Red Chain in their possession. Cyrus then contacts Pokémon Hunter J with new orders: "Sorry to keep you waiting. Proceed in capturing the lake trio." Narrator, "As Team Galactic's evil plans begin to unfold, what will become of Ash, Dawn, and Brock? Stay tuned to find out."
- Professor Oak's Pokémon lecture: Bonsly
- Music from The Rise of Darkrai is heard playing during the scenes with the Red Chain.
- Jupiter openly states to Looker that she finds him attractive (though the sentiment isn't the same for him). This could suggest that they are around the same age.
- The title is a reference to the phrase "chain of events".
- Team Rocket doesn't recite their motto in this episode.
- Also, only Meowth blasts off in this episode.
- Jupiter states that she knew that Ash, Dawn, and Brock had seen Azelf, Mesprit, and Uxie, respectively. While it is likely that Cyrus told her of Ash and Dawn's encounters with the legendary Pokémon, Brock encountered Uxie long after this.
- After Jessie was electrocuted by the trap in the cell door, the Skuntank guarding the cell was shown laughing up against a wall identical to that of inside the cell (made of stone). However, in the shot before, it was up against a normal looking, smooth wall.
- This episode refers to the location of Dawn's next Contest as Daybreak City, however in all future instances it would be named Daybreak Town, not City.