Vikings S03E10 Recap: The Dead

The Vikings came, and found Paris a much bigger obstacle than they have ever encountered. As the season closes, the Vikings have come to terms with Paris, and are the brink of losing their King. Ragnar is dying from his injuries, on one of his terms to tend the siege was a baptism to reunite him with his dear friend Athelstan when he leaves this world.

The French ride to see the Vikings. They have brought all the treasure as they had promised. They have met their obligation, and hope that the Vikings will meet theirs as well and leave promptly. Rollo is not pleased with this at all, but many of the others seem pretty pleased with the outcome.

Rollo goes to see his brother, he tells him that they have brought the payment. The treasure makes no difference to Ragnar, he is dying. He holds Athelstan's cross, content in the knowledge that he will see Athelstan again.

Floki walks with Rollo for a moment, he warned the others that the priest was poisoning Ragnar, and now Rollo has a heavy heart. Lagertha does not believe in her heart that Ragnar wants to be a christian. Rollo was baptized too, but he was protected from the Christian magic by their Gods, Ragnar is not so lucky because of Athelstan.

Kalf hopes that the Christian rumors are true, believing that no Christian King will ever rule their world. Its an insult to their Gods and people. Assassination plots are dreamt of.

Inside the walls of Paris, the mass is held. The Emperor is a little too pleased with himself. All go to their knees expect him at the final invocation. The commander heads to speak with Princess Gisla, but she refuses him. Another maiden does with to prove her gratitude, but the Count is called away. The Emperor sees their victory as a great one, but Princess Gisla does not feel it is so. They paid the Vikings to leave. The Emperor thinks that they will be better prepared next time.

Many celebrate into the night. Floki seeks out Helga, but she doesn't want him to touch her. She cannot forgive him for what she knows.

Bjorn sits with his dying father. Ragnar tells him that there will come a time when he is responsible for their people. He is king for now. He tells Bjorn that when the time comes he needs to lead with his head not his heart. He has a task for him.

Rollo looks to Paris in the distance, remembering the words of the seer.

The celebrations have ceased, and most lie sleeping, including Ragnar. Lagertha peeks at him, but does not disturb him.

The Count entertains the maiden in his bed chambers. Her husband won't miss her for the night. She thinks the princess is boring, and wishes to entertain him. He leads her downstairs, to his little torture chamber. That's not the sort of entertainment she was thinking of. He asks her to submit to being chained up and whipped, she can even choose her whip. The woman doesn't back down. She looks at the whipping instruments as he tells her she can call a halt at any time. She gets into shackle position, ready to keep his interest. He asks her to tell him to strike, and she does. He lands a heavy blow to her back.

Floki is building when Helga finds him early in the morning. Ragnar asked him to build him one final thing.

The French look out over their walls. It's been nearly a month since they paid the Vikings, and yet they have not left yet, and they want to know why.

The French ask the Vikings directly to see why the Vikings have not left. Bjorn tells them honestly, Ragnar is too sick and dying, he cannot travel. The Count wants to see for himself, and Bjorn takes him, while his men await outside. Inside of the tent, Bjorn tells him that if Ragnar dies he asks for a proper Christian burial. Should Ragnar die, the Count will allow him to be brought to the Cathedral by unarmed men, and a mass will be said for his soul. Ragnar shakes and sputters. He grabs his son's hand, as the Traveler and the count leave them.

Night falls, and there is singing. Bjorn sits outside of Ragnar's death tent. From their walls, the French keep watch. Ragnar's time has come, and Bjorn closes the door to his death boat. He leaves the tent, and all come to hear the news of Ragnar's passing. Ragnar's boat is lifted to its display, as Bjorn tells the group that they may go say their final words to him.

Lagertha goes to see her former husband says. She never thought that the Gods had this in store for him. If he has gone to heaven, they will never see each other again. She believes though that Odin will make his way to Heaven and take him to Valhalla where he belongs. With after everything, she hopes that they will be able to once again fight, drink and love one another.

Rollo admits to his brother that he was always jealous of him. He's sorry he's dead, but it happens to all of them sooner or later. He finds it funny that the Gods took him first, he always thought the Gods favored Ragnar, even Ragnar thought that, but it seems they were both mistaken.

Floki comes next. He made the boat that took Ragnar to fame, and the boat that will take him to Heaven. He tells him to give his regards to Athelstan. He feels like Ragnar betrayed his heritage, everything and everyone, especially him. He loved Ragnar more than anyone, more than that priest, but Ragnar never appreciated Floki. Floki hates Ragnar, and loves him with all his heart, even as he tears him away from himself.

The Vikings chant and sing as they carry their beloved King to Paris. Just as the French promise, they open the gates to receive Ragnar. His pallbearers are allowed into the city, as the other continue their ceremony outside of the walls. The gates close behind Ragnar's ship as it is lead towards the cathedral. The French cross themselves, and sing their mass for the fallen King. It's both solemn and beautiful. Behind the procession, the people follow into the cathedral. Ragnar's death boat is brought before the Emperor and Princess Gisla, the mass begins. As the priest sprinkles holy water on it, Ragnar wakes, and throws the boat open, scaring everyone inside. Ragnar holds the Emperor at knife point. Well that was one hell of a Trojan horse. Ragnar kills the bishop. Princess Gisla goes on the attack, and Ragnar grabs her. The Count cautions everyone from stopping him, for fear that he will kill the Princess. The Emperor faints. Ragnar takes the Princess through the streets with his pallbearers, back towards the gates. The Vikings cut the ropes to the bridge to stop the French from stopping him. He opens the gates, and his horde is on the other side. Ragnar lets the Princess go, but she's confused. He pushes her towards her guards, and she finally runs. Bjorn motions the attack forward. Ragnar returns to his son. It was prophicized that the living could not conquer Paris, but that the dead could. Ragnar collapses to his knees before his son. Lagertha and the others walk forward, and head into Paris.

The French try to muster a defense, but the Vikings are inside.

The city is falling, and the people are huddled inside of the cathedral. Princess Gisla returns. The Commanding Count thought that the Vikings would leave after they got what they wanted, but they didn't want treasure. The Emperor is in shock, his cathedral has been defiled. Princess Gisla tells him to get up, the heathen are gone.

Lagertha is not pleased that Bjorn kept the truth of Ragnar's nondeath from them. She feels that he does not trust them. Bjorn was only doing what his father told him to do. They're headed back home, but intend to come back in the spring, and they need to leave a presence there. Floki offers to stay, but Rollo tells him no, that he has no reason to stay. Bjorn wants to know his reason to stay. Bjorn makes the decision that Rollo and his chosen will stay while the rest return home.

From the shore, Rollo watches his brother, and his family leave him far behind. Ragnar gives his brother a final look from the boat, as he's rowed out.

The Emperor dines with his daughter, glad that they're able to enjoy their fine foods again. He knows that the Vikings have left for now, but they will return in the spring. Princess Gisla thinks that one of his brothers would come to their aid. The Emperor admits that he has begged and pleaded for aid, but none has come, none will come. He sends his servers away. He will not be the Emperor who let Paris become ruin. Princess Gisla asks him if he will give them more money in disgust. He plans to give them something more precious to him, her. Princess Gisla is displeased, she thinks that this is the work of the count, since she refused him. She would do almost anything for her city, but not this. The Emperor has already sent an envoy, and the Princess is even more distraught that she was not asked first. As the Emperor, he had to make a hard decision, and she must obey it.

Rollo is given the terms of the treaty. He will become very rich and very important, and he will get the Princess as a wife. Rollo asks what he must do in return. Rollo would have to defend Paris against his brother in return.

Rollo heads in to meet with the Emperor. He takes in the opulence as everyone openly stares at him. His men fan out around him, and the Emperor welcomes him warmly. Princess Gisla, not so much. She tells him that she will not marry him, that he has no soul, and he is worse than the beasts of the field. He disgusts her. Rollo likes her spirit. He tries his tongue at French, and is happy at his effort.

The Vikings continue their long voyage home. While most sleep, Floki cannot. Ragnar calls to him, and he hurries, like an eager puppy. Floki searches Ragnar's face. Ragnar knows the truth now. Floki killed Athelstan.


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