Kilt Drops: 0
Previously on Outlander: Roger found out that Jamie and Claire die in a fire on a Fraser’s Ridge. Brianna went back in time to try to stop it and left Roger a letter telling him not to follow her.
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Brianna consults a map of Scotland on a frozen mountain top, that honestly looks really far from Craigh na Dun, where we saw her cross over. She promptly trips and falls down a hill, injuring her ankle. I think we’re meant to infer that this journey is going to be a lot harder than she realized. She tries to soothe her ankle in a creek, and builds a fire at night, where she enjoys her time-traveling sandwich. The next morning, she’s looking the worse for wear, as she stumbles through the woods towards the chimney smoke she sees in the distance, and ends up passing out. She dreams of (or remembers) Frank taking her out of the car when she was a sleeping child. And she awakens in the home of one Laoghaire MacKenzie Fraser. Laoghaire brings her a meal and tells her she can stay as long as she needs. Brianna tells Laoghaire, and Marsali’s sister, Joanie, that she’s headed to the harbor to catch a ship, so she can join her parents in America.
Ian Murray, bless him, arrives that evening at Laoghaire’s to bring the latest installment from her divorce settlement with Jamie. She’s snippy that it’s less than half of what Jamie owes her. Brianna overhears the yelling, which reminds her of the fighting between Claire and Frank when she was a child. Laoghaire gives Brianna a warm dress, and Bree spends time helping Joanie in the garden, noting that she and Joanie have the same red hair. The also commiserate over the fact that like Joanie’s step-father, Bree’s mother didn’t love the man who raised her. We flashback, to Brianna visiting Frank in his office, where he clearly had a copy of Jamie and Claire’s obituary. She knows there’s something he wanted to tell her, but he can’t do it, and he insists that she go home to her mother. She leaves angrily, but he promises her someday she’ll understand.
That night, Laoghaire tells Brianna about her last husband, and how when they were young, he would have done anything for her. He took a beating for her, and stole kisses all the time until he was bewitched by another woman, who hardened his heart against her. Laoghaire says they used to sit around the fire at night and tell the girls stories from the bible. Brianna asks her to tell Joanie’s favorite. The next morning, as they’re talking in the kitchen, the subject of Lallybroch comes up, and Brianna finally mentions who her mother is, and that she was raised by Frank Randall. Laoghaire says he must have been a good man, to raise her as well as he did, even though her mother didn’t love him. Brianna remembers the night after her fight with Frank, when she brought him tea and scones to where he’d slept on his office. He wonders if she’d ever considered studying abroad. Later, he tells her he’s been offered a position at Cambridge, and he wants her to come with him because he and Claire are getting a divorce. This is somehow shocking to her, and she won’t answer him right away. We see that his accident happened shortly after that, and she blamed herself for not staying with him.
Laoghaire hints that Claire may not have been honest about the reason Brianna couldn’t have been raised by Jamie, that “there was no room in his heart for a bairn” and that he sent Claire away when he found out she was pregnant. Laoghaire hopes that Brianna’s father doesn’t turn her away for a second time. When Brianna stupidly reveals the reason she’s so desperate to reach her parents is so that she can prevent their deaths in a fire, Laoghaire becomes unhinged. The idea that something could prevent her from receiving her alimony, or that she may have been made a fool of in some way, by the daughter of the woman who placed a love spell on her Jamie send her clear over the deep end. She locks Brianna in her room and threatens to have her burned as a witch. Brianna is unable to find a way to escape the room, but little Joanie frees her and drives her Lallybroch and Uncle Ian. Ian gives Brianna money for her passage to America, as well as Claire’s clothes. He instructs her to go to Aunt Jocasta when she arrives in Wilmington. Before securing passage on the Phillip Alonzo, she acquires a servant, named Lizzie, who needs to be saved from life as an unwilling concubine. When going to board the ship, Brianna has one last vision of Frank, and he seems to be giving his blessing on her journey.
Scotland looks freezing, in 1970 as well, where a newly clean-shaven Roger (why, Roger, WHY?) is driven to Craigh na Dun by Fiona. He’s come prepared to follow Brianna through the stones. Roger seems to make his journey more quickly than Brianna and arrives at the Harbor, seeking passage aboard the Gloriana. However, the captain, none other than Stephen Effing Bonnet, tells Roger that he’s sailing to Wilmington, not the Carolinas, and he’s taking no more passengers aboard. Roger said he’s desperate to follow his lass there and asks if Bonnet would take him aboard as crew. Bonnet correctly surmises that Roger’s hands are better suited to letter writing than sailing, but he gamely picks up a barrel and starts working for his passage. On the ship, Roger makes friends with a mother named Morag, and her crying infant, Jemmy. That night, Bonnet finds a small child on the ship has smallpox, and tells Roger to throw her overboard. Roger refuses, and Bonnet tosses her anyway, and her mother jumps after her. Roger is shocked he’d do that to an innocent child, but Bonnet reminds him that he’s captain, and he’ll do the same to anyone else who shows sign of the rash, and he orders the ship searched. Roger finds Morag hiding with her baby. He’s feverish and crying from teething and she’s terrified that Bonney will think it’s smallpox. Roger swears on Brianna’s life that he’ll help them. Of course, Bonnet still finds them. He tells Roger of the time that a toss of the coin was what determined the fate of his survival, so now he tosses the coin to determine whether Roger will pay for his deceit with his life. The coin toss is on his side, but Bonnet remains a menace.
Kilt Drops: 0
Jamie and Claire didn’t appear at all!
Wit and Wordplay
- This is not a question, but I am so sad we don’t get more of a dreamy Lord John this week.
- Do beards somehow hinder time travel? I don’t understand, Roger.
- If I remember correctly, in the books, Brianna chose to go to Lallybroch first, not knowing for sure where Claire and Jamie might be. I’m not sure why the show chose for her to stay with Laoghaire, unless this was their way of dealing with the fact that they weren’t able to lock down the actress who plays Jenny Murray.
- Exactly how crazy is Laoghaire? Like, should I be worried for Joanie?
- What did you think of how they chose to use Tobias Menzies this week? He’s a tremendous performer as usual, but it’s interesting to see this device used with Brianna’s story for a change.
Next week: Roger searches for Brianna in America, Murtagh gets himself in deeper with the rebellion, and Brianna meets Stephen Bonnet.