Outlander S02 E04: La Dame Blanche
Episode four of “Outlander” begins with Jamie and Duverney engaged in a chess game. Claire is a bystander to the match, when in walks Le Comte St. Germain. His presence and commentary on the game distract Jamie. St. Germain walks away and Claire does the same, accepting a glass of wine offered to patrons. Jamie and the finance minister are about to launch into a political discussion when Claire becomes seriously ill. St. Germain looks on, nonplussed, as Jamie carries his wife from the building.
As she recovers at Jared’s, Jamie tells Claire that if Prince Charles receives funding from the Duke of Sandringham, Duverney’s king will most likely contribute as well. He suggests hosting a dinner party in an effort to show Sandringham that it’s not worth investing in Charles’ cause.
Now that there is a chance Sandringham will bring Alex Randall to the party and reveal that Jack Randall is alive, Claire tells Jamie the bad news. Her husband doesn’t react in that way that she expects. He is thrilled by the possibility of seeing Jack Randall die someday.
Claire visits Raymond at his shop to ask him if he sold cascara to St. Germain, telling her friend how sick she had been, presumably from a spiked drink. Raymond tells her that he only sold it to a servant he could not identify. Prying eyes are watching the pair from outside, and Raymond ushers Claire to a private room in his shop. Claire fears for Frank’s future, and Raymond reads the sheep knuckles that she rolls onto a zebra hide. Raymond cannot see Frank’s fate, but is certain that Claire will see him again. Before she leaves, the shop keeper gifts Claire with a pendant, a stone that will change color when it is near poison.
Louise summons Claire for a visit. She confides in Claire that she is pregnant, but it is not her husband’s child. She asks for Claire’s help in terminating the pregnancy, but Claire’s method is not without risk to Louise. She persuades her friend to convince her husband the child is his, and raise it together.
One night Prince Charles arrives at Jamie and Claire’s door, sporting an injured hand, cut during his escape from his lover’s house. Claire tends to his wound, shocked to learn that he is Louise’s lover and the father of her baby.
Jamie and Claire conspire to invite both Louise and her husband to their dinner. They want Charles to find out about the pregnancy. In all likelihood he will have a meltdown in front of Sandringham, hurting his chances of securing more funding for the rebellion.
On the day of the grand affair, Claire leaves for the hospital to assist victims of an explosion, accompanied by Murtagh and Fergus. Claire is already running late returning for dinner, but they’re going nowhere with a broken carriage wheel. The group walks back to the house rather than wait for a repair, sending Fergus ahead to tell Jamie their predicament.
The Duke of Sandringham and his secretary, Alexander Randall, are the first to arrive to dinner. The uncle responsible for Mary’s arranged marriage and her future husband are also in attendance. When Prince Charles is announced, Jamie wastes no time introducing him to the duke.
During their walk, Mary confesses to Claire that she is in love with Alex Randall. Claire is surprised at this news, knowing it is Jack Randall in Mary’s future. As they continue on, they are attacked by four men.
Murtagh is knocked out, while innocent Mary is violated, and the men attempt to compromise Claire. When the man sees who she is, he shouts “La Dame Blanche!” and the group retreat.
Back at the party, Jamie doesn’t appear at all pleased that Sandringham invited St. Germain to his affair. Prince Charles looks on with interest as his lover Louise is announced, walking on the arm of her husband. Jamie introduces the couple to the prince, whose kiss on Louise’s hand lingers far too long.
Murtagh, Claire, and Mary return to Jared’s, and Claire tells them about their ordeal. The men want to search for the culprits, but Claire insists that they need to proceed with their planned dinner. Mary is put to bed, with Alex Randall watching by her side.
Jamie and Claire are at odds about what to do about Mary. Claire wants to call the police, but Jamie knows that if word gets out about her loss of innocence, Mary will end up a spinster. During this dispute, Jamie tells Claire that St. Germain is downstairs.
After greeting the guests, Claire seeks out Louise, and asks her how her current situation is going. The young woman took Claire’s advice, and all is well.
The dinner conversation turns uncomfortable when Sandringham amusingly tells the diners that the pope was too busy to meet with him when he visited Italy. Ever pious, Prince Charles remarked that being the leader of the Catholic faith must keep him quite engaged. Jamie and Claire’s plan to make the two men not care for each other seems to be working.
Jamie prods Prince Charles to tell everyone what God’s plans are. The prince is happy to oblige until Louise turns the subject from politics to the opera, annoying Charles further.
Although they have not formally announced the pregnancy, Jamie offers his congratulations to Louise and her husband in front of everyone. The pair are put on the spot, and the prince raises his glass in a toast to the couple. He downs his wine before launching into a bizarre narrative about being happy one day, and the next not so much. When Louise’s husband questions his meaning, the prince tells him that he is in the dark.
Claire has been uncomfortable having St. Germain seated beside her all night, but she feels even worse when he is able to identify the purpose of the pendant around her neck.
Meanwhile, Mary awakens and panics when she sees Alex Randall beside her bed. She flees, but Randall is able to restrain her on the floor. Her screams alert the guests, and they rush into the room, mistakenly believing that Randall is attacking Mary. A fight ensues, much to the horror of the onlookers. Claire comforts Mary, and watches Prince Charles leave with St. Germain.
Was St. Germain responsible for Claire’s illness and attack? Why did the group of men call Claire La Dame Blanche? I hope these questions are answered next week.