Bluff is the eighteenth episode, written by Nick Santora and Karyn Usher, and directed by Jace Alexander. It was first broadcast on April 17, 2006 in the United States. The episode features the escape team members' attempt to save their escape plan.
Now transferred to psych ward, Michael immediately seeks Haywire out but Haywire does not remember him. His memory is hindered by the medicinal drugs given by the doctors. Michael tries continuously to jog Haywire's memory. Desperate to retrieve his map, Michael pulls Haywire into an empty room and pokes his finger into Haywire's throat to make him vomit the pills he just took. He then shows Haywire his tattoo.
Lincoln gets a phone call from Veronica telling him that LJ is being charged with attempted murder and the murders of his mother and step-father. Hearing that LJ is unwilling to cooperate with Veronica, Lincoln pleads with Veronica to petition for him to see his son. Veronica tells him she'll try but it is highly unlikely that he'll be let out of prison to see LJ.
Haywire, now regularly vomiting his pills, remembers Michael and the tattoo. He tells Michael that he also remembers that Michael had tricked him. Haywire reproduces the tattoo on a piece of paper and won't hand it over to Michael until he tells him about the 'path'. Michael tells him that the escape starts from the basement of the psych ward. Haywire hands his drawing over to Michael. That night, Haywire grabs one of the copies he made of the tattoo and breaks out of his room. However, the minute he opens the door to the basement, the alarm sounds. Haywire turns around stunned and realizes that Michael has tricked him once again. Michael watches from his room with a smile on his face.
Back at the "gen pop", Captain Bellick and C.O. Geary decide to 'auction' off Michael and Sucre's cell since they were both absent. An interested buyer notices the leaking toilet. Geary assures him that it will be fixed in 24 hours. T-Bag overhears this and immediately tells the others. When C-Note hears that the cell is being auctioned off for $250, he relaxes and tells Geary that he'll double it. C-Note then has a plan to collect money from his 'pharmaceutical' operations recruiting Trumpets and the other African American inmates for help. In a secluded area of the yard, Trumpets cuts C-Note out of the trade and gang due to his association with the P.I. crew, most notably the white supremacist inmate T-Bag. C-Note refuses a chance to walk away unhurt punching Trumpets and is then assaulted by the other African American inmates by socks filled with batteries failing to collect his money in the process.
As their last resort, T-Bag mentions that they could enter the "kitchen game" to raise enough money to buy the cell. Reluctantly, C-Note and T-bag team up to fix a card game knowing the consequences of cheating. T-Bag slips up in a deal by accidentally dealing C-Note's specially placed card face up. According to rules, T-Bag cannot redeal and must give C-Note another card. C-Note must win this hand anyway so he chooses to go all in on a bluff. After a risky win, C-Note pays Geary their pre-arranged price of $500. Geary, realizing he could garner a better price for the cell, tells C-Note that the price had gone up. C-Note tells Westmoreland this and diffidently asks for Westmoreland to give up his pocket watch to cover the difference. Westmoreland unwillingly parts with the watch since it holds a huge significance to him. When C-Note hands the watch over to Geary, Geary reveals that he had already sold the cell for $700.
Dr. Tancredi visits Michael after he asked to speak with her. When Michael tells her that both of them know that he doesn't belong in here. Sara tells him that unless he tells the warden who had burnt his back, the warden is going to put him in solitary and then he will end up coming back here.
In accordance with Manche, Sucre and Lincoln's plan, Michael tells Warden Pope that a guard named Geary burnt his back. Pope immediately goes to check Geary's locker. While rifling through, he finds the cash in a boot, and a uniform with a burnt sleeve that was planted in the locker by Westmoreland. Michael's accusation is not questioned any further, and Geary is subsequently fired. Michael is released from psych ward and is allowed back to general prison population, at which time he returns Charles' watch, which had reassuringly been given to him by Warden Pope after finding it in Geary's locker.
Lincoln is driven from the prison in a prison van, on his way to see LJ. The death row prisoner is savoring the scenery of the passing countryside. As the Prison van approaches an intersection, a huge towing truck is seen speeding towards them. It collides into the side of the van, which is flipped over and heavily damaged. The occupants inside are tossed around and thrown out of the van. The truck speeds away, and the credits roll.
Nick is approached by a man in a phone shop. This man reminds Nick about their deal and warns him that he is obliged to report on the Burrows case and Veronica's movements. Later on, Nick secretly and reluctantly tells someone on the phone that Veronica is with him and that he has her in his apartment.
After being dismissed by Brinker, Kellerman meets with vice president Reynolds. They agree that Lincoln Burrows must be eliminated. Lincoln is granted special permission to visit his son LJ. Warden Pope tells him he has never heard of the Department of Corrections granting such a request and that this concession has more to it than vigorous petitioning by the Burrows Lawyers. Pope tells him that he will be heavily guarded.
- Bluff refers both to Michael's act in order to get into the Psych ward in order to meet Haywire and to C-Note's bluffing on his final hand when participating in the kitchen game.
- During the scene between Kellerman and Brinker, the song "Share the Land" by The Guess Who is heard coming from Kellerman's car stereo.
- The programme on the TV when Haywire first remembers "the path" is "March of the Penguins" narrated by Morgan Freeman.
- This is the fifth episode where John Abruzzi doesn't appear in.