Outlander Imagined 301 The Battle Joined Possible Synopsis
As part of my #Droughtlander relief I am trying to figure out what shape the episodes of Outlander Season 3 will take. Of course there is a wealth of material to fit in each episode. How the producers and writers will break up the story is really for them to decide, but there is no reason I cannot speculate on it myself. So here goes… My version of what Season 3 Episode 1 may be like. Keep posted for more updates.
EPISODE 1 – The Battle Joined
We see carnage on a battlefield. As the smoke clears we see a Redcoat solider dead. He lays across a bloodied kilted figure. A crow, shiny and black, picks at the body of the Redcoat, Jonathon Wolverton Randall (Black Jack Randall), cawing occasionally.
EDIT: we now know we will see The Battle of Culloden in episode 1.
Highlanders who have survived the slaughter scan the field looking for other survivors. Jamie hears someone calling his name, he only now realises he is not dead.
The compatriots help each other to shelter. However, the men’s suffering has only just begun. Night falls. Smoke fills the air, it smells like a roast dinner. The British are burning the dead. It takes two days until the British find the dying men within a building. A British major enters and finds the gravely injured Highlanders unresisting. He announces his name as Lord Melton. He reads an order from the Duke of Cumberland authorising execution of men who have engaged in “treasonous rebellion”. The men are to be shot, but not before they are given an hour to prepare themselves and a chance to write a letter if they wish. When the hour is up Lord Melton’s clerk prepares to make a note of their names for the record. Resigned to death, the men provide their names and exit the building, followed shortly by a single shot each time. Until it is Jamie’s turn. As he gives his full name and title, Lord Melton realises with horror who Jamie really is. He is two things, Red Jamie – the Jacobite traitor with a price on his head, AND, the man who spared the life of his brother, John William Grey.
Lord Melton, fulfils the debt of honour owed to Jamie by sending Jamie back to Lallybroch in a wagon. Lord Melton believes he will not survive the journey anyway. Though grievously wounded Jamie does survive.
In Scotland 1968 – Roger enquiries begin to cast doubt on Claire’s belief that Jamie died at Culloden. He has found an a paragraph in a book entitled The Prince in the Heather.
“Following the battle,eighteen wounded Jacobite officers took refuge in the farmhouse near the moor. Here they lay in pain, their wounds untended, for two days. At the end of that time, they were taken out and shot. One man, a Fraser of the Master of Lovat’s regiment, escaped the slaughter. The rest are buried at the edge of the domestic park.”
We flashback to 1940’s Boston. There is tension in the air between Frank and Claire even before Frank leaves for work.
Baby Brianna is restless, suffering from nappy rash and lack of sleep. The heat has failed, plus Frank is expecting guests for dinner, adding to Claire’s burden. When Frank gets back home Claire is in disarray, much like the kitchen. Frank criticises Claire’s appearance and they argue. Claire smashes a bottle of wine and flees out of the house. After driving aimlessly she seeks comfort in a church (one she knows well) near the house. Frank finds her, wisely not mentioning the fight, the guests or dinner saying he wants to see her home safe. Once home Claire feeds Brianna who falls asleep before she can deplete Claire’s ample supply of breast milk. Claire plans to use a breast pump, but Frank in an effort to rekindle their relationship kneels by Claire, takes her breast in his mouth and suckles. They make love on the nursery floor, for the first time since Claire came back through the stones.
In Scotland in 1968 – Brianna has been industrious in her research finding the legend of Leap O’ The Cask and the Dunbonnet. Using logic, a little guesswork and intuition Brianna is convinced the story is about Jamie.
Flashback to 1746 – Having survived the wound suffered at Culloden, Jamie has been forced to live in a cave near Lallybroch, only returning once a month to eat, shave and wash (edit: it seems he didn’t shave!).
Jenny is pregnant again and Jamie insists he is notified when she is about to give birth, as her husband Ian is away, having been arrested. Fergus comes to tell Jamie to stay put in the cave as there are Redcoats about, but Jamie knows something else is happening as well, Jenny is about to give birth.
Despite the risk Jamie goes to Lallybroch where he finds things at a standstill. He organises the household as Jenny gives birth to a son she names Ian after his father. As Jamie cradles the newborn in his arms he tells Jenny that Claire was pregnant when he lost her. As they talk loud noises emanate from downstairs. The English have come. Jamie hides in a cupboard still holding the newborn baby. The captain of dragoons insists they search the house. The midwife protests saying Jenny has only just given birth. The captain asks where the baby is, Jenny must say the child is dead as she cannot reveal where it is. Chaos ensues when young Jamie hears this news. Such is the noise and yelling that the captain cannot be heard and he retreats downstairs. After this close call Jamie decides he cannot return to Lallybroch for some time.
One day at the cave Jamie senses Redcoats are about and sees flashes of red as they pass on the path nearby, then snatches of conversation. Fergus has been intercepted bringing a cask of ale up to Jamie. Fergus insolently teases the soldiers. Jamie hears an ominous sound, that of a blade being drawn from a scabbard. Then he sees a glint of steel as the blade swings through the air followed by a soft thud on the ground – Fergus’s hand has been severed. In the process the cask falls down the rocks and into the stream, creating the name of the legend.
Jamie decides it is futile to stay in the cave, bringing danger to his family. He arranges to be recaptured to keep from the soldiers from brutalising his family and the people of Lallybroch, with a bonus of a reward which will help the family and the Lallybroch tenants survive the famine. Mary McNab comes to Jamie with a farewell feast and she is also intent on making love to him as she knows he is sacrificing himself for their benefit.
Link to Season 3, Episode 2