Suspicion at the military school falls on an elite group of cadets with a penchant for sadism and dangerous games. Solving the case will have a devastating impact on both Oskar and Max’s professional lives.
When Max’s nephew Daniel suffers a breakdown, he believes something sinister is to blame. Looking for answers, Max asks Oskar to join him on a trip to Daniel’s military school.
When his nephew, a student at a military school, suffers a breakdown after a fellow cadet’s death, Max calls on Oskar for help. The school prepares a new generation of military officers, but its barbaric traditions are hidden from the outside world.
Amelia is determined to rebuild her life in Vienna and decides that in doing so, she must distance herself from Max. In a farewell meeting, she voices her concerns and ultimately cuts ties with him, which comes as a shock to the doctor.
Their latest investigation draws Max and Oskar into the sphere of nationalistic groups who despise Vienna’s immigrants. Max’s fiancée is provoked into taking daring risks before the murderer’s shocking rationale is finally revealed.
On an outing together, Clara asks to be more involved in Max’s life. She hopes that they’ll be able to better strength their communication with one another when they’re married, but their day together is interrupted by a surprise visitor.
Following an early departure from his engagement party to help with a murder case, Max’s sister lectures him about his work. She advises him to put forth more effort in his relationship with Clara, fearing that it’s hanging by a thread.
Oskar asks Max to help investigate a grotesque series of murders in Vienna’s slums, where the victims are seemingly chosen at random. The killer’s gruesome calling cards are vicious mutilation with a military blade and a penchant for arcane symbols.
Professor Gruner expresses his discontent with Max after hearing that he’s been working with the police. He believes Max has turned his back on the medical world and threatens to end his career with the hospital.
While meeting to discuss the details of their case, Max questions how the inspector knows so much about the cemetery they had visited in search for clues. Oskar reluctantly reveals the death of his daughter.
Max employs his psychoanalytic training to probe murder suspects’ minds. Eventually, a thread emerges that takes Max and Oskar throughout Vienna. Solving the supernatural conundrum will threaten Oskar’s career and ultimately Max’s life.
While visiting Oskar, Max discusses Sigmund Freud’s theory and how it can be used to analyze a person through their behaviors and mannerisms to reveal what goes on inside the human brain. Stumped by his case, the inspector asks Max to use his skills with psychology to help him solve it.
Inspector Oskar Rheinhardt learns that Dr. Max Liebermann will be observing his case involving a woman’s murder. Max explains that he hopes to learn more about the psychopathy of the criminal mind during his observations.