In both past and present, Claire makes a new beginning. Full recap and new clips from Outlander‘s Season 2 premiere episode “Through a Glass, Darkly,” which first aired Saturday, April 9 at 9:00pm ET|PT on STARZ.
“Through a Glass, Darkly” opened with Claire waking up at Craigh Na Dun. As she came to her senses, she reflected on wishing she was dead; however, she recalled a promise she made to continue living, even if it was a life she no longer wanted. As she walked down the hill and toward the main road, Claire realized her life with Jamie, the world she had come to know, was over. She continued walking down the road and was stopped by a passerby who got out of his car to inquire after her. Claire asked the man what year it was, to which he replied 1948. She asked a follow up question, wondering who won the Battle of Culloden. The man was likely confused about the questioning and tried to urge Claire to get into his car so he could take her to get help. But she persisted, grabbing the man’s lapels and screaming for him to tell her who won Culloden. When he finally answered that the British had won, Claire began sobbing and collapsed to the ground. Her bid to change the future had failed and Jamie was gone…
…Awhile later, Frank, arriving in Inverness (1948) and walked briskly into a hospital. He demanded to speak with a Dr. Edwards. When the doctor met Frank, he shared that “she” (Claire) was recovering from dehydration and superficial bruises. But otherwise, she was in good health. But Claire’s emotional state was another matter. Dr. Edwards led Frank to Claire’s room where she was sitting in bed, staring out of the window while the radio played in the background. Frank entered the room alone… Claire’s first words?
“Can you turn that bloody thing off, please.” She hadn’t looked up to see it was Frank, yet continued complaining about the noisiness.
But then Claire saw Frank’s reflection in the window and realized who was there.
“Frank. Hello. I’m back.”
Frank replied by saying he was overjoyed that Claire had returned. But when he approached her, she saw a flash of Black Jack Randall, and flinched away violently. Frank was clearly confused and apologized. Unfortunately, they were interrupted when a photographer arrived and snapped a picture of Claire “Mrs. Randall”. He was shooed away by a nurse.
Frank then told Claire that he’d spoken with Reverend Wakefield who had prepared some rooms for them to use while she convalesced. Claire asked whether Mrs. Graham was still Reverend Wakefield’s housekeeper; she would need someone to speak to about her experience, someone also familiar with the standing stones. But before they could leave the hospital, Claire would need new clothes. Frank looked at the clothes Claire was wearing when she arrived at the hospital, and knew they were clearly not from this time period.
A week later, Claire and Frank were settling in at Reverend Wakefield’s house. The Reverend watched Claire as she sat by herself in the garden, reading books about Culloden and the Jacobite rebellion. As she read, Mrs. Graham brought more books outside. Claire needed a fuller account of the Highland losses at Culloden (likely searching for Jamie’s name). According to Mrs. Graham, Reverend Wakefield had the best collection in Scotland.
Claire was still bothered by all the noise… this time fighter planes flying overhead. Mrs. Graham speculated that there might be another war soon, as Stalin/Russia blocked Western access into Berlin (Germany). Claire was very frustrated:
“There’s always another fucking war!” (And for Claire, it’s true…she went through the Stones after World War II, left the 18th Century in the midst of the Battle of Culloden).
Claire apologized, but then remembered how Jamie didn’t know what “fucking” meant and that time she called him a “fucking sadist” (*giggles*weeping*).
Mrs. Graham noted how, whenever Claire talked about “him”, she noted his fine sense of humor, his smile, and his hair. Claire laughed, but But then Claire realized it was truly in the past, and that Jamie had been dead and buried for the last 200 years. She just needed to know if Jamie really died at Culloden Moor. Was there any reason to hope he might have survived?
Here, Mrs. Graham (gently) encouraged Claire to let Jamie go:
“You have had an extraordinary adventure Claire. Extraordinary. One that few people could even imagine. Treasure it. Keep it safe and secure, tucked away in some special place in your heart, but…don’t spend the rest of your days chasing a ghost.”
According to Mrs. Graham, it was time for Claire to focus on Frank, a living man who loved her completely.
Inside, Frank and the Reverend reflected on how little Claire had spoken since returning, “only pleasantries”. Frank also shared that he had received a letter from his friend Professor Atkins. Frank had sent Claire’s clothing to be examined and Professor Atkins confirmed that they were “a marvelous example of authentic 18th century Scottish woman’s wardrobe.” Frank knew that Claire couldn’t have walked into a shop and purchased those clothes…at least not in 1948. At the same time, neither Frank nor Reverend Wakefield understood Claire’s new fascination with Scottish history. Wakefield believed it was time for Claire to give Frank some answers. In fact, the world at large had questions, evidenced by an article in the paper (with Claire’s picture from the hospital). But Frank wanted to be patient and give Claire the time she needed.
Later that night, Claire invited Frank to join her in her room to talk. They sat by the fire, and Frank recalled their last night together, at Mrs. Baird’s inn when the lights had gone out (Season 1, Episode 1, we know that Claire and Frank had sex). While Frank smiled at the memory, Claire was clearly repulsed by the turn of the conversation. At that point Claire wanted to tell Frank what happened while she was gone. He interrupted to say that she didn’t have to; Frank didn’t care where Claire had been, only that she was back. But Claire was insistent. She would tell the story at her own pace, and Frank would hold his questions until the end.
“Remember I went back to Craigh na Dun that day to look for a flower I had seen near the stones…”
They talked through the night and when Claire finished the next morning, Frank was distressed, but he believed her. She pushed Frank on this, doubting that the academic in him could really believe her story. Claire also referred to herself as his “ex-wife”. Out of everything she had said, this seemed to trouble Frank most. Sure, Claire had married another man, but she still wore the wedding ring Frank gave her. For Frank, all that truly mattered was that Claire was back.
But she had to make him understand: she was with another man for two years and loved him deeply as his wife. Yet, according to Frank, it was Claire who didn’t understand. She didn’t know what it was like to be left behind, how everyone told Frank that Claire had left him of her own free will for another man. It left a void, one that Frank could have filled with rage and hatred. But he just couldn’t believe it. Deep down he knew that Claire couldn’t have chosen to leave him. And Claire’s story confirmed that. And as for Jamie, while Frank didn’t understand Claire’s relationship with him, he could accept her feelings and how leaving Jamie broke her heart. Frank still felt that there was nothing Claire could say or do to make him stop loving her. He still meant it, unconditionally. Frank got down on his knees before her, pleading for Claire to understand that he loved her and still wanted a life together. And then, Claire made her big reveal: “I’m pregnant.” (*SCREAMING*)
At first Frank was so happy with the news… until he realized that he couldn’t possibly be the father.
“I’m carrying another man’s child, Frank. You need to think about that, and what that means. For all of us.”
Frank became very angry. He jumped up from the floor, fisting his hands and hovering over Claire. One tear rolled down his face, then Frank turned and stormed from the room and out of the house. He ran to the shed, picked up a stick and started breaking everything in sight. Eventually, Frank crumbled to the ground.
Later, Frank apologized to Reverend Wakefield for the damage. But the Reverend wanted Frank to focus on what was more important. Claire was pregnant…did Frank want to have a family?
Frank shared how, after Claire left, he learned he was infertile. However, without a wife, Frank wasn’t too concerned. Instead, he chose to focus on work. But when Claire returned and then told him she was pregnant, he was intensely overjoyed. Of course, he realized the baby couldn’t be his.
Reverend Wakefield encouraged Frank not to lose hope; other men had raised children that weren’t biologically there’s. The Reverend brought up the example of Mary, Joseph, and the baby Jesus.”
Frank: “I am not Joseph! She is not Mary. And I’m fairly certain that the father is not God Almighty.” (*SNORT*)
Their conversation was interrupted when young Roger came to ask his father if he could play outside. Frank was taken aback by hearing the little boy call Reverend Wakefield “father” (in fact, the Reverend was Roger’s great uncle). But this just reinforced the Reverend’s point.
With the biological father (Jamie) dead, this baby would need a father. Frank would have to step in, and perhaps this, too, was part of God’s eternal plan.
Frank eventually shared this with Claire. He wanted them to be together, married and raising the baby as a family. They could start over in America. Frank had been offered a position at Harvard, and in Boston, they wouldn’t constantly be flogged by the press about Claire’s experience (“the lady taken by the fairies”). Here, Claire requested that Frank never use the word “flog” in her presence (memories of BJR and his terrible flogging of Jamie).
However, Frank had two conditions. The baby would be raised as THEIR child and Frank would be the father, not the ghost of another man. Second, Frank refused to share her with another man as long as he was alive. So this meant no more research into Culloden and Jamie’s fate. Claire had to let Jamie go. And Claire would, to honor her promise to Jamie and Frank’s conditions. Then Frank embraced Claire:
“You have made me very happy, and I hope, in time, that I will make you happy, too.”
Claire hugged Frank back and they both cried. She then took her 18th century clothes and gave them to Frank to dispose. She tried to take off Jamie’s ring, but Frank stopped her, saying she could keep it until she was ready. He went outside to burn her old clothing.
Claire packed up the remainder of her things in a suitcase, and they were off to America.
She and Frank stepped off the plane in Boston and Claire was taken aback by the skyscrapers. She descended the stairs and as she took the last step into her new life, Claire reached out for Frank’s hand…
…And we were transported back to Le Havre, France in 1745, with Jamie helping Claire off the boat. Together they stepped into what would be their new life.
It was clear that the trip from Scotland had been difficult for Jamie. Apparently, sailing to Boston would be out of the question, unless Claire wanted to bury Jamie at sea.
Of course, Murtagh had also made the journey with them, and he was less enthused:
“France. Reeks of frogs, just as I remember it.”
Murtagh collected their things and went to go secure them rooms.
That night, Jamie and Claire settled down. He was still in a great deal of physical and emotional pain. Sometimes Jamie could even still feel BJR’s touch. But Claire wanted Jamie to focus on her and their plan to stop the Jacobite rebellion. She shared her knowledge of the history—Bonnie Prince Charlie’s arrival in Scotland, his raising of the Jacobite army, their initial victories, and the devastating loss on Culloden Moor in April 1746. Jamie wondered why they couldn’t just help the Bonnie Prince to keep winning. But Claire said that she didn’t know the tactics or strategy to accomplish that. Rather their best bet was to stop Charles in France before he sailed for Scotland. Claire and Jamie could infiltrate the Jacobite Movement, get close to the key players, and sabotage their access to money and arms.
Jamie: “You certainly have a high opinion of what a crippled Highlander and a pregnant Englishwoman can accomplish.”
Claire: “Since when were you not up for a challenge?”
According to Claire, they could start with Jamie’s cousin, Jared in Paris, a Jacobite himself. Jamie was still concerned with the prospect of this treachery. Wasn’t this a dishonorable path? Wouldn’t this cost them their souls? But for Claire, they had to trust themselves… saving the Highlands was worth it.
Jamie agreed to write a letter to Jared asking for his help. But what would they tell Murtagh?
At first, Murtagh was pretty hesitant to agree to Jamie and Claire’s plan, especially since they weren’t telling him the whole truth. How did they know the Jacobite rebellion was doomed to fail? But Jamie swore that, one day, when the time was right, he would tell Murtagh the whole truth, everything that happened and why. Murtagh agreed.
Three weeks later, Jared came to La Havre to meet Jamie and Claire. Cousin Jared was a little suspicious of Jamie’s sudden desire to join the Jacobite cause. Where did this interest in politics come from? To be known as a Jacobite in France was a badge of honor, but there were still enemies to be wary of. Did Jamie have the fire and determination to be a true member of the righteous Jacobite cause?
Jamie (with Claire’s help) then removed his shirts and showed Jared his scarred back, courtesy of the British army.
“…does any man need further reason to rise up against a king that would allow such horrors to be carried out in his name?”
Jared was apologetic and asked how he could help. Jamie asked meet the Jacobite leaders, hear their plans, and carry them out. Surely, the Stuarts would appreciate having Lord Broch Tuarach and the Fraser clan on their side once the Bonnie Prince got to Scotland.
Jared would think about it. In the meantime, he asked Jamie to help run his wine business while he made a trip to the West Indies. In exchange, Jamie could have use of Jared’s home in Paris and 35% of the wine profits.
While Jamie inspected Jared’s wine shipment, Claire took a walk on the docks. She was experiencing morning sickness and needed some fresh air. While out, Claire observed a sick crewman being taken off a ship in a “stretcher” and left for dead in one of the warehouses. Claire was able to intercede and saw that the man had smallpox. When Claire said it aloud, the ship’s captain got very angry and told Claire to shut up before she ruined him. Jamie stepped in and pushed the man away, telling at him to have more respect for his wife.
It turned out the crew worked for Le Comte St. Germain, who arrived at the warehouse.
Claire was adamant that the crew be quarantined and the medical authorities. Jamie asked her to leave the matter to the port authorities (who St. Germain was currently bribing to keep the matter quiet); however, Claire refused to leave. By law, St. Germain’s ship and cargo had to be destroyed, a very expensive loss, indeed.
St. Germain turned to Claire and demanded to know who she was. He called her ill-bred and vulgar for interfering in the matter. When Jamie intervened to say that St. Germain should have more respect for his wife, Lady Broch Tuarah, Le Comte wasn’t at all impressed. In fact he was angry and wondered if maybe this was part of Jared’s plan to eliminate him as competition in the wine business. But Claire maintained she did the right thing. So what St. Germain lost his ship and cargo? It was better than having smallpox spread through the city. Le Comte swore that Claire and Jamie would pay for what they had done to him.
That night, Claire, Jamie, Jared, and Murtagh watched as Le Comte’s ship and cargo burned. Jared told them that Jamie and Claire had made an enemy.
Jamie: “Another country, another enemy. Life with you is certainly never dull, Sassenach.”
As Jamie and Claire got into a carriage to ride off to Paris, Claire made eye contact with Le Comte, who gave her a menacing look.
If you missed tonight’s episode, you can watch “Through a Glass, Darkly” on STARZ Play online HERE or via the STARZ Play app.
What did you think of the Outlander premiere? *HUGS YOU TIGHT* Share your thoughts and feels in comments!