Outlander Recap: S01E02 Castle Leoch

The beginning credits are absolutely breathtaking from the imagery to the music. Starz you truly amaze me, and I cannot wait for more of this series.

The men arrive at Castle Leoch. They’re dirty and sore from their travels, but they’re safe. Claire remembers the last time that she was there that she and Frank arrived by car. After spending two days riding by horseback she fears that none will help her get back to her time. There’s much rejoicing at the mens arrival, and a little scolding over the care of the horses. Mrs. Fitzgibbon sends the men off to breakfast when she notices Claire. She looks on her with distaste, but Jaime assures her that Claire is a friend. She takes Claire in for some breakfast, and a new wardrobe. Claire worries over Jamie and his injuries. She insists on tending to his wounds first, and Mrs. Fitz will get her what she needs. Claire’s walk through the castle is very different this time. In the kitchen Claire tends a concoction of boiled herbs on the fire that will be used on Jamie, who has already lost his shirt. Mrs. Fitz leaves Claire to her patient. She removes his plaids and sees the lash scars that mar his back. Randall took much joy in his pain. Claire asks why he was flogged. Jamie was flogged for escape, and for thievery, or at least those were the charges. She asks about the escape, he was being held for murder.

It was almost four years ago when a small part of soldiers came lead by Randall. Jamie’s father was away at a funeral when he heard shouting. The men had his sister, and Jamie fought valiantly so that she could get away, but Randall grabbed the girl. Jamie surrendered, and asked that his sister be let go. Randall instead spit shined his prize, and noticed her beauty. He ripped open her dress as Jamie fought to save her. Randall made sure that he watched, and then whipped Jamie in front of Jenny. Randall wishes for some hospitality, and Jamie warns his sister off. Randall knocked Jamie out, and Jenny went with Randall for fear that he would be killed. When he awoke he was strung up with the chickens.

Claire binds his wounds, and Jamie notices her steady caring touch. He tells her that her husband is a lucky man. She wonders what her husband is going through with her disappearance. Perhaps he thinks her abducted, death or worse that she ran off with another man. Jamie apologizes for making her sad, but Claire tells him that she’s fine, she was just thinking about her husband. Jamie wonders if he’s alive, and Claire breaks down into tears. He pulls her into his big arms, and offers her comfort. The pair linger a breath away from a kiss. Claire pulls away, and Jamie tells her she has nothing to fear so long as he’s near. She’s English, and they aren’t particularly liked, but Jamie will give her what protection he can.

Mrs. Fitz awakens Claire. She’s brought her some hot broth and stoked the fire in her room. Claire manages a few bites before Mrs. Fitz takes it from her and strips her dress off. She’s surprised by Claire’s undergarments or lack there of. She stripped the rest of the way, and redressed in the normal fashion of the time. And perfect timing too, because her escort has come to take her downstairs.

Claire decides that to survive she needs to figure out when she is. She sees on a letter that she’s in 1743 Scotland. The Laird of the castle arrives. Colum Mackenzie introduces himself, and welcomes her. She takes a seat in the chair across from his, and notices how he has a hard time with his legs to sit in his chair. He asks about the distress she was in when his men came upon her. She reveals the attempted rape by Randall, and asks that he extends her gratitude for his brother’s transport, but tells him that she wishes to return to Inverness soon. He’s sure something can be arranged, but he wants to know how she came to be wandering in the woods in nothing but her night dress. Claire remembers something that Frank once told her about interrogation. The truth should be stuck to as much as possible. Only things that should be kept secret should be omitted. Claire weaves a tale about travelling with a manservant, and having to flee her carriage. When she came upon Randall he relieved her of her clothes. Colum, knowing Randall’s reputation makes Claire’s story plausible, but not likely. He’s an officer, and he wonders why he would attempt to rape a stray lady in the woods. Claire asks if there is ever a good reason for rape. Claire turns the conversation back to her returning to Inverness. A traveler is coming in next Saturday that travels to Inverness often, and he should have room. Five days Claire will have to wait, and until then Colum offers her his hospitality.

Claire is familiar with some of the customs of the time that she is stuck in, but it is purely through books. It all seems alien to her. She watches the people down below, some harmless sword fighting between young boys, and sees Dougal join one of them, even letting the lad win and skewer him with his stick. Perhaps its not all that different after all.

Claire walks into the common hall where many are sitting for a meal. They all turn silent, they’re eyes glued to her as she approaches the Colum’s table. She curtsies and Dougal offers her his seat. She gladly takes it, and the rest of the hall go back to eating. Colum pours her a glass of wine and introduces her to his wife. So far her stay has been well. Colum asks about her name of Beecham, if she is French decent why they don’t use the French version. Claire assumes that because their ties with France are old but not strong, one of her ancestors must have adopted the English form. Colum asks more about what part of France she desends. Her family is from the North, and Claire asks about Mr. MacTavish. Dougal admits that Jamie was injured, but that he’s fine. He’s working in the stables. Colum pours another drink. He asks more questions, this time about who she will be staying with when she gets to Inverness. She tells him that she will be staying with family whom she’s never met. The young boy that she watched playing earlier arrives, and Claire introduces herself to Hamish, mistaking him for Dougal’s son. He’s Colum’s son, or so they claim. Maybe Claire should hold off on the wine, its muddling her brain. Hamish takes a seat next to his mother, as one of the men watches. Claire excuses herself, tired from travelling, and retires early. Colum allows her to go.

Claire realizes that she needs to be more careful, she just fell for the oldest interrogation trick. Ply the subject with food and drink to get their guard down. To survive she’s going to need to be more careful.

In the kitchen Mrs. Fitz kneads away at some bread. She offers Claire some porridge, since she missed breakfast, but Claire turns down the less than appealing looking food. She asks for the stables, wishing to change Jamie’s bandages. Mrs. Fitz points the way and away Claire goes with a basket of supplies. She’s being watched, but she doesn’t realize it. She heads to the stable and sees Jamie working with a horse training it. Jamie coos to it in Gaelic, when Claire accidently startles the horse. She apologizes, but Jamie isn’t angered. She’s brought fresh bandages and lunch. She notices Jamie’s voracious appetite, commenting that he’d likely eat grass with his hearty appetite. He has, when there was nothing else to eat. Claire asks why he’s raiding cattle instead of tending his own farm. There’s a price on his head, not for the escape, but for murder. Jamie didn’t actually kill the man though. Claire finds him complicated, and he’s ready to tell her another story. There was a ruckus with some friends, and a red coat was shot. He didn’t do it, but he was too weak from drink to run off, and he was caught. Claire realizes that his real name isn’t McTavish, with the way everyone keeps reacting to it. He admits it isn’t, that he had to assume the name. She asks if Colum knows, he does, as does Dougal, they’re both uncles. She asks why he told her, because she asked he says. She tells him that he could have lied, and he could have, but instead he decided to trust her. They’re interrupted by the stable master, wanting Jamie to get back to work. He thanks her for the meal, and she asks that he not get himself into more trouble. He can’t make any guarantees. Claire notices her tail, and she confronts him. Dougal sent the man to follow her, and he’ll follow her until Dougal orders her otherwise. It could be worse, Rupert isn’t so bad. Claire confronts Dougal. He thinks that she is a spy. He knows that she hasn’t told them the truth, and he’ll have her watched until he learns it. Claire doesn’t plan to do much for the next four days, and Dougal is surprised to hear that she’s leaving.

For the next four days Claire planned to live a mundane life to keep her sanity, and to give Dougal’s spies nothing to report. Mrs. Fitz gave Claire the task of gathering food for the castle, and Claire finds peace touching living growing things. Geillis Duncan warns her against some of the mushrooms, telling her that it is poison. Geillis wonders if she plans to use them to off her husband, and to let her know if it works so she can do the same. The mushroom caps aren’t poisonous and can be used to treat wounds when dried. Geillis knows exactly who Claire is before she introduces herself, and she has a little bit of plant knowledge herself. The girls in the village come to her for her herbal remedies, they call her a witch. She isn’t one. She tells Claire to come and visit her sometime, and hopes to see her in the hall tonight.

Everyone is all dressed up in the hall. Claire makes a diagnosis Colum’s degenerative disease as he enters the hall. She concludes that with the state of medicine in 1743, that Colum was living on borrowed time. A pair of neighbors bring their complaints to Colum in Gaelic. Geillis translates for Claire, but there’s a bit lost in translation. The number of complaints continue, mostly about property. Then a young woman is brought forth, accused by her father of loose behavior and asks Colum to punish her. Jamie’s arrival is noticed by Claire. He speaks for the girl, offering to take her punishment before the people. Claire is concerned since he is still injured. Jamie is allowed to take it. He chooses fists rather than the strap. Dougal does not look pleased at all. Rupert gets to dole out the punishment. Jamie takes the blows well, until Rupert punches him in the arm at Dougal’s nod. Dougal’s point is made, and Rupert delivers another hit that knocks Jamie off his feet. Geillis warns Claire to stay, and not go to Jamie. Jamie bows before Colum with the punishment ended. As Jamie is carried out, he makes eye contact with Claire, and Geillis escorts her out.

Claire cares for Jamie’s new wounds, asking why he took the girl’s punishment. Jamie did not know the girl, but did not want her to be marred by a punishment when he could easily take it. Mrs. Fitz gives Claire something for Jamie’s wounds, thankful for his intervention. The girl Laoghaire is her granddaughter. Claire gives Jamie additional care instructions, but he thinks it would be easier for Claire to care for his bandaged arm. Claire informs him that she is leaving, and the pair say a goodbye. Laoghaire waits to speak to Jamie.

Mrs. Fitz sends Claire off with a basket of goodies, bidding her a safe journey. Dougal is waiting at the wagon, with news that Colum is waiting to see her. He brings her up to Colum, and she remembers her past, she’s about to see what the room her and Frank visited and had their little tryst is really for. Dougal leads her in. Colum greets her. He asks if she has any ties to Clan Beecham. She does not. She looks at the table which she once sat on, which now holds a book and potions. She’s very fascinated by it all, but she really should go. There’s been a change of plans, she’s staying. Claire asks what Dougal said to him to change his mind. Colum claims it is his pleasure for her to remain as his guest. She knows he thinks that she’s a spy. He isn’t sure, but until he knows that she does not pose a threat to his family, or clan she’ll stay a guest, or a prisoner if she tries to escape. He closes the door, leaving Claire in the apothecary chamber. 


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