Jadzia Dax prepares for her zhian'tara, the Trill Rite of Closure. During the ritual, Jadzia will meet Dax's previous hosts, which will be accomplished by transferring the memories of each into someone's body. Sisko, Kira, Bashir, Odo, Quark, O'Brien, and Leeta agree to participate, and a Guardian performs the ceremony. Kira undergoes the transference first, becoming Lela, Dax's initial host.
The Guardian leaves Jadzia alone with Lela, who exhibits several traits Dax has inherited. So do subsequent hosts O'Brien/Tobin and Leeta/Emony. Quark experiences some discomfort hosting a female entity, Audrid, while Bashir/Torias regrets that an accident ended his life too soon. Jadzia then prepares for her most difficult meeting — with Joran, who once committed murder. Sisko has volunteered to host his memories, and the transference is conducted inside a holding cell.
Sisko/Joran berates Jadzia, telling her she is not worthy of the Dax symbiont, then tricks her into lowering the forcefield and attempts to choke her. But Jadzia overpowers him with a few Klingon-style blows, bringing Sisko back. Later, she admits to Sisko that she may have put off her zhian'tara because she is afraid of not measuring up to the other hosts. Jadzia is still haunted by the time Curzon forced her out of the Initiate program. Did he feel she just wasn't good enough?
Odo has volunteered to host Curzon, and when the transfer occurs, he literally morphs into a combination of himself and the old man. Odo/Curzon is thrilled to see Sisko. When Jadzia joins them in Quark's, Sisko leaves, knowing she needs to speak with Odo/Curzon about her feelings of insecurity. But he says nothing to make her feel better, only that he felt sorry for her. Jadzia replies that when Curzon's memories are restored to her, she fears that without his respect, she won't respect herself. Odo/Curzon happily answers that she won't have that problem — Curzon and Odo love being joined, and have agreed that Curzon should stay in Odo's body permanently.
With Jadzia in danger of losing a part of herself, Sisko offers to talk to Odo/Curzon. Instead, she works up the courage to face him herself and demands that her memories be returned. Odo/Curzon initially refuses. But Jadzia stands up for herself, and uncovers the surprising fact that Curzon forced her out of the program because he was in love with her. She tells Curzon that she loves him too, and that they can be joined forever through Dax if he returns to her body. This convinces Odo and Curzon to separate, and Curzon's memories return to Jadzia, finally giving her the self-confidence she needs.