Hearts were left to rue a wastefulness in front of goal after Falkirk grabbed a late equaliser to secure a 1-1 draw.
The major talking point concerned off-the-field events, though, as Hearts began the game without Steven Pressley amidst reports that the Scotland international has been stripped of the club's captaincy.
Such controversy did not appear to have too much of an affect on those that had been selected though, as Hearts took a 65th minute lead through Andrius Velicka's low drive from just outside of the area.
A crucial second proved elusive and with only a one goal advantage, Hearts let their hosts back into the contest late on as Craig Gordon twice did well to repel efforts.
While it looked as though Hearts would be capable of holding on, Falkirk's veteran playmaker Russell Latapy had other ideas and he conjured a leveller with just six minutes left on the clock.
Alan Gow proved the architect when his perfectly measured pass allowed Latapy to net with a polished finish.
Hearts' woes were compounded in the final moments when their caretaker coach Eduard Malofeev was sent to the stand, for putting his point across in a too vociferous manner.