American Horror Story S04E10 Recap: Orphans

The death of a beloved monster is always a sore, but never a surprise. A carney's life burns brighter and stronger than most Elsa says. Pepper lays on the body of Salty as Paul tries to tell her that he's gone, and just a body now. She doesn't move. Outside Elsa tells Eve she understands the death of Pepper's soul with the death of her other half. Eve is concerned that the body will soon start to smell, but she won't give up the body. Elsa brings Pepper something to eat. Most pinheads die before the age of 40, so his passing was not a surprise. Poor Pepper found him in his state, tried to shake him awake, and grieved ferociously. He died in his sleep. Pepper never mistreated him or took advantage of him. Elsa worked hard with Salty to try to get him to communicate, Pepper could, but never Salty, Elsa laments as she removes her makeup. Stanley points out that the look of suffering is marring her face. Elsa doesn't appreciate his remarks. Stanley has something she will appreciate, a telegram from the TV producer they've been waiting for. Until then, Stanley suggests she get some rest. Elsa can't rest though, Pepper needs her though. Stanley asks that she let him take care of Pepper as he has her. He wishes to cremate Salty, and give Pepper a beautiful urn, but Elsa refuses. She knows Pepper would want Salty to have a proper burial. Stanley presses. Stanley is in his barn with the body of Salty, cutting his head off. The head is sent to the museum and preserved next to the body of Ma Petite.

Desiree reads a book to Pepper. Dell finds Pepper on her lap as she continues her book. It's utterly beautiful. Dell tells her that she will make a great mom someday, and asks to talk to her in private. He's made mistakes, and he wants another chance. She saved his life, and he's saved hers, but this is their chance for both of them to be truly happy. Desiree goes to leave to get ready for the show, but Pepper wants her to stay. When she won't, Pepper throws a tantrum. Desiree watches, but gives her some tough love, telling her to clean up her mess. Desiree reports to Elsa on Pepper. Elsa tells her that Pepper has known nothing but abandonment her entire life, until Elsa found her. Desiree wonders what they will do with Pepper when Elsa leaves, she's likely to kill herself. Elsa cannot have that happen, they need to rouse her spirits. Elsa tells Desiree the beginnings of the Freakshow.

When she came to America, Hitler was on the verge of war, so Elsa hid her accent and worked as a chorus girl, but she was never good at working for someone else. She was drawn to the freaks though. With war around the corner, and the men going away, who would be left to entertain? It would be the freaks. So she started her own collection of oddities. She went to the place where people throw other people away, the Orphanage. That was where she found Pepper. Pepper had never knew her father, her mother had died, and her sister couldn't handle her. Orphanages usually never took in eighteen year olds, but she had the mind of a child. Elsa didn't need to adopt her, they happily let her go. With Pepper she was the first one that Elsa truly loved. After her first performance, she knew that Pepper was a keeper. From there, Elsa grew her freaks. Pepper grew, and her material streak grew as well, but Elsa couldn't let her breed.

Elsa didn't know what to do until a Maharajah came to visits the freaks, and Elsa laid eyes on Ma Petite. She knew immediately that she had to have her. He refused to part with her, until Elsa offered him three cases of Dr. Pepper. She had never seen Pepper so happy. Her maternal needs were filled, but she wanted more. She longed for a companion. Elsa wrote every orphanage, until finally she found Salty. It was love at first sight for them. Elsa officiated their wedding. The bride and groom knew six words between them, but it was still moving, and everyone in the freak show celebrated. Salty and Pepper were very happy. Ma Petite was their child, and Elsa their fairy godmother. It was a love story for the ages, they never sinned or hurt anyone.

Desiree throws back her drink. Pepper has lost everyone she loved. Desiree desires to find her sister. Pepper has grown up, she's no longer the handful that she was. Elsa glumly admits that she may be right, that it may be time for her angel to return home.

Maggie twirls Jimmy's card between her fingers. She takes a deep drink from a bottle, as Desiree comes in with her Beau for a reading. Maggie asks where she picked him up at, and Desiree caught him with the twirl of a pasty. He asks her to tell him their future. Maggie looks for clues, and sees that he's a traveler, a door to door salesman. He's a romantic, and she sees a white picket fence in their future. All the lovey dovey gets to her though, and she gives them a reading where their love turns sour. Desiree and her man leave, claiming that they don't believe in her power anyways.

Outside on the carousel Maggie sits wallowing in alcohol and misery. Desiree confronts her about the reading she gave, obviously a reflection on the horrors of her own love life. Its right, there isn't anything she can do for Jimmy. She admits to Desiree that she's no fortune teller, that she and Stanley are on the griff and that he's no talent scout. She tells her that they're business partners have been for years.

1941. Maggie was selling papers as Stanley watched her, picking pockets all the while. One officer caught her, but Stanley quickly stepped in with a tale. Stanley offered her a partnership then, ten cents on the dollar. Back then it was big money. Maggie didn't have parents to protest, and Stanley took good care of her. Desiree asks what she could want with freaks like them. Maggie claims that she was picking the pockets of the customers. Desiree doesn't believe her for a moment. She notices that there have been a lot of trouble in the show since she arrived, that a lot of them have been dying. Maggie lashes out, asking if she wants to hear that she killed them all. Desiree warns her that if she finds out that she had anything to do with their deaths that she'll kill her as well.

Maggie returns to her tent to find Dot and Bette waiting for her. She's not in the mood for company. Bette tells her that they don't have much, but they've been saving their money, and they want to give it to her to get Jimmy a lawyer. Maggie tells the girls to get a lawyer themselves, that he may even reward them with a kiss. Dot wants to punch Maggie in her face. Bette tells her sister to let her handle this. Bette paints a picture of triumph, but Maggie doesn't see the silver lining. Dot snaps. Jimmy may think that she walks on water, but she sees the real Maggie and she's a phony. She doesn't love Jimmy, if she did, she would do anything to save him. Bette points out that Jimmy could end up like Meep. Dot throws the money at Maggie, telling her to do right by Jimmy.

In jail, Jimmy gets a visitor, its Stanley, and Jimmy isn't exactly enthusiastic. He was hoping for someone else. Stanley knows how he's feeling though, he lost his mother too, and he got into some trouble too. He asks Jimmy if he did it, but Jimmy is sure he didn't. He drank a lot and blacked out when he got to the house, but he's sure he didn't do it. Stanley didn't think that he did, and so he's getting him a good lawyer, the son of one of the best ones. Stanley tells him that he owes him nothing, but the lawyer will need a retainer. Jimmy has no money, and nothing of value. Stanley walks away. Jimmy is left frustrated when Stanley comes back. He may have an idea of how to raise money, and judging from the direction of the camera Jimmy may be pimped out again.

Desiree prepares a grand feast. She's working on a pot roast. Maggie mocks Desiree for her Betty Crocker act. Desiree points out that if she's gonna be a home maker she needs to make sure her man doesn't starve. Her mother taught all her sisters how to cook but not her. Desiree tells Maggie to stop buttering her up, she still remembers what Maggie confessed, and she still hasn't decided what to do about it. Maggie finally wants to do the right thing. She takes Desiree to talk in private. Maggie wants to help Jimmy. Desiree tells her to get him a lawyer. She tells her that everyone in the camp will be dead soon, and she just needs to connect the dots and find the culprit. She knows that Desiree wants to ride off into the sunset and forget all about everything, but Maggie needs her to see something first.

Elsa sips coffee as she sits with Pepper and her sister. It's an awkward sitting, she thinks that Pepper remembers her leaving her at the orphanage. She thought she would never get married or have children if she had to look after her dimwitted sister. Rita never had children. Elsa thinks that's all the better. She's taught her many things, how to speak, make cocktails and take care of herself. Rita doesn't think that she can keep her sister, she's never told her husband that Pepper has even existed. Elsa tells her that she thinks that Pepper is a burden, but she is not she is a gift. Rita mutters that her husband will be upset, but Elsa tells her to man up and stand up to him. Her sister has experienced a great loss, and Elsa fears that she will perish if she is not with family. Rita reluctantly accepts her sister, even though she knows her husband will be upset. Elsa goes to say her goodbyes. She and Pepper have been together for a long time. Elsa tells her that no matter how far apart they are, that they will still be family. She knows that Rita and Pepper don't know each other anymore, and that Rita will make mistakes, but she means well. Elsa kisses Pepper's hand, and tells her that whenever she misses her, to hold her hand to her cheek. Elsa leaves poor Pepper behind.

Maggie takes Desiree to the museum. She tells her that she needs a witness for when she calls out Stanley, so that someone will know the truth if he kills her. Desiree is beside herself when she see Ma Petite's body. Maggie admits that Stanley got $3,000 for her. They see Salty's head on display next, but when the newest display is shown Maggie faints. It's Jimmy's hands.

Rita sits down with Sister Mary Eunice. She tells her that she and her husband gave everything. Massachusettes 1962. Sister Mary Eunice asks for the reason for confinement. Rita tells her that she always wanted a baby, and right before her 50th birthday she experienced great pains. Her husband rushed her to the hospital, and she was told she was in labor. The baby was deformed, but she considered him a miracle. She was confined to her bed. Pepper was happy to help take care of the baby at first. 

Rita sat in bed as Pepper did everything, including making Martini's. Rita made her take the baby with her as she made her drinks, not wanting to deal with the baby at all. She blames the missing gin on Pepper, when she was drinking it in reality. Her husband came home, upset about the baby's crying, and Pepper sitting around. She sent Pepper downstairs and her husband would follow. He couldn't wait to get alone with her, but Rita claimed it was Pepper who was obsessed with her husband. 

 Sister Mary Eunice tells her that truthfully a lot of patients suffer from lack of inhibitions but the shock therapy and caning help with that. Rita asks if it helps with the murdering. Sister Mary Eunice asks for clarification. Rita tells her that none of them saw what happened thankfully.

Rita was getting ready to go out, she wanted to dance and have a night out with her husband, but he was worried about Pepper being left alone with her baby. He hated Pepper and her lack of smarts. Rita feels the same way. She hates being left alone with the two of them. Her husband thinks that they're on the same page, and he wants her to admit that she never bonded with the baby. She never did, but she could never kill her sister. He has a way to kill two birds with one stone.

 Rita tells Sister Mary Eunice that she was with the baby all day at the park, and exhausted, so she asked Pepper to give him his bath. Pepper bathed the baby and her husband came from behind and took Pepper from the room. She banged on the door, trying to get back in while he killed the baby. Once done she let Pepper come back in. She screamed. Rita claimed that she ripped his ears off and drowned the baby then went down to watch her show. Pepper was taken away in a straight jacket as Rita screamed blaming her. Pepper was taken to the asylum. Rita claims that Pepper ruined her life, and asks that she never be released.

Pepper cries in the corner, banging her head on the wall. Sister Mary Eunice warns her that self pity will get her no where. She removes the jacket from Pepper, to get her into decontamination. Pepper cries about the baby. Sister Mary Eunice tells her that what she did made her sick. She looks into Pepper's eyes, and thinks that she sees redemption in her eyes, and hugs her close. Sister Mary Eunice takes her into the library to have her help tidy up. She thinks of her as her special project, and hopes she'll be able to work in the bakery with her soon. Pepper cleans up the magazines, and finds one with Elsa on the cover, which brings her a smile and a bit of happiness. 


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