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Previously on "Salem"

Cotton: Tell me again of the visions. It says this object, this "malum," has thought to be present at every grand rite throughout history.

Tituba: You would threaten me, your one true ally?

Mary: So the others have turned on me.

Tituba: Yes.

Mary: Rose?

Tituba: Everyone.

Rose: I wonder.

Mary: Wonder what?

Rose: If he'd never left, would Captain Alden still hold such desperate appeal?

Tituba: Tell me John Alden's secret.

Mary: We had a deal.

Mercy: Our deal no longer pleases me.

Mary: What do you want?

Mercy: I want to be just like you.

Rose: The Malum has fallen into other hands.

Cotton: This object is evil. It consecrates the Earth for the Devil's return.

Alden House

Rose: You filthy pricks. You coward!

John: What are we waiting for?

Cotton: Saturn... [Rose chuckles] Planetary ruler of witches.

John: Have you been drinking?

Cotton: Most certainly. It's not every night I catch a witch with a... a "boob's trap" was it? Lured here by that infernal box of yours, the malum. Once every 17 years, saturn stations direct...[ Rose groans] Exalted in its own house for a few brief moments. This will happen today at nightfall.

John: And we care because?

Cotton: A witch suspended beneath saturn as it stations direct, exalted in its own house, cannot lie. Reputable sources say it is why Odysseus himself dallied so long on Circe's Island.

Rose: [Screams] Naughty lads.

Cotton: We must haul her out into the woods...

Rose: You need to be punished.

Cotton: Bend her beneath saturn as it stations direct... And interrogate the witch. I've calculated the precise spot, but first we must secure her for travel. [Rose groaning]

John: Why does my house smell like a pack of wild dogs pissed all over it? What is this?

Cotton: Canis urinam... dog piss. [John groans]

Cotton: Plus some medicinal plants. Hellebore, nightshade, bloodroot... in combination, the result is a powerful paralytic. Hold this. Hypodermic. Ingenious, eh? We live in remarkable times, Captain. New discoveries, new inventions every day. New weapons... To fight an old enemy.

Rose: [groans, grunts] Come on down, boys. The darkness is waiting for you.

[Gasping] [Breathing heavily] [Growling]

Cotton: We need to inject this mixture into her veins. Get ready.

Rose: Come closer. The darkness wants to taste you. [Growling] Aah! [Both grunting]

Cotton: Hold her still!

Rose [disguided as Jane Alden]: John! Son! [Gasps] Why are you doing this to me? [Crying]

John: Mother? Rose:

[Sobbing] It hurts so! [Laughs] She's in hell, Captain. She's the devil's favorite whore. She loves it there.

John: [Grunting]

Cotton: No, Captain, don't! It has to be precise! That will do.

Opening credits

"Cupid Carries a gun" plays

The House of the Seven Gables, dining room

Mary: Afraid she'll steal the silver?

Tituba: She is a dirty little creature.

Mary: So was I when you first brought me here.

Tituba: When are you going to kill her?

Mary: Clean her up. Give her something to wear. And burn all her things. She won't be needing them anymore.

Salem street

[Bell ringing] [Indistinct conversations]

Cotton: Truth be told, I long for a good look at her brain.

John: Her brain? I can barely look at her face.

Cotton: I believe that our abilities are regulated by our brains. I wonder if the devil has changed her somehow materially. Perhaps some region of her brain is abnormally enlarged.

John: Or perhaps some region of yours.

Cotton: Hurry, or we'll be dead before tomorrow.

The House of the Seven Gables, Mary's budoir

(during Mary's story, the set change according to the story in: dining room, Salem church and the woods)

Mary: Observe, child, the quintessence of devoted marriage, how carefully I attend to my dear husband's toilet... [George whimpers] And how fearlessly he exposes his throat to my blade.

Tituba: Come along, Miss Mercy.

Mary: Leave her. Take him with you, Tituba. One's too few, and three's too many. Your eyes... so filled with want. The hard part's not getting what you want, child. The hard part's knowing what you want.

Mercy: But I do. I do know what I want.

Mary: Mm, of course ...To be just like me.

Mercy: Someday. I hope I may be. Mary: Well, it's better to travel hopefully than to arrive. A story?

Mercy: Why, yes, please. I haven't heard one in such a long time. Not since my mother died.

Mary: No. Puritan fathers don't care much for stories. We women keep them alive. Yes. This one has all my favorites. You may borrow it, if you like.

Mercy [sighs] No. Father says girls have no need to learn to read. He would read the only book worth reading and read it to me. And then, one day, he would find the right man to take over the job. God's will.

Mary: Not my God. Mine likes us to read for ourselves. Perhaps I shall teach you to read someday. In the meantime, I'll tell you one... From memory, about the Queen of the Night and how she became queen. Not all queens start as princesses.

Mercy: Some begin in ashes.

Mary: Indeed. Okay. Once upon a time, there lived a maiden, hair as black as night... [Chuckles] Skin as white as snow. And the maiden, she loved a handsome prince. And the prince loved her. Come.

Mercy: Okay.

Mary: But there was an evil king, and he sent the prince to his death. And the poor maiden, her heart turned gray as ash. One night, in her despair, a fairy came to her and promised her that all the world would be hers if she would but give up the last of her love for her dead prince. And though she wept to lose the only part of him that still lived deep inside her... She did as she was told... In the hopes that all her dreams might still come true. And so it came to pass that the ash maiden was brought to the king's castle. There, she met a servant who hurried her inside. And through the scullery door, she watched the lords and ladies of the land enjoy a sumptuous feast with the evil king and his queen. And at this feast, a dark prince slew the old queen with an invisible wave of his hand... [Silverware clatters] [Mrs. Sibley coughs]

Mary: Clearing the way for the ash maiden herself to become queen.

Mercy: And did she?

Mary: Did she what?

Mercy: Become queen?

Mary: Yes. But you know the worst part about becoming queen?

Mercy: What?

Mary: It often requires marrying a king. And so the ash maiden married the evil king and became queen, her wedding night a consummation of joy and pleasure. [George grunting] Mary: But none of it hers. [George snoring] [Mary vomits] That night, she felt one monster on top of her and another inside. And she glimpsed what her soul was becoming and learned her first lesson as queen... be careful what you wish for. She served as the queen to the evil king. For two years that felt like 2,000. But when she could take no more, she begged the fairy to turn her back into the ash maiden. But the fairy refused and showed her all the kingdom that lay before her and said all this might still be hers.

Rose: You know why the mathers and the sibleys and the aldens and the other founding families really picked this spot to be their new Jerusalem? This town will become one of the richest on earth. And who controls Salem controls the new world.

Mary: The ash maiden understood there was no turning back. She would embrace her role as queen and all the power that came with it. That night, for the first time, she would use that power. And that night, the whole world began to turn upside-down.

George: Stop your silly games, girl. Come here. [Laughs]

Mary: For it was not by a kiss she might make a frog into a prince, but by a kiss she might make a king into a toad. Mary: Or even... George: [Sighs] Mary: I must bind you. [Chuckles]

George: Oh. Mmm. [Sighs]

Mary: [Laughs] Ah. Ah, but even bound... You are far too much man for me. I need some help to handle you. [George sights] [Tituba laughs] George: Yeah. Mmm. [Groans] Ah. No.

Mary: Do you like games, George?

George: Yeah. Yeah.

Mary: You like games?

George: Yes. [Sighs] [Breathing heavily] [Groaning]

Mary: Aah! George: [Muffled groaning]

Mary: [Grunting] Aah! [Breathing heavily] [Muffled groaning stops] Mary and Tituba: [Breathing heavily]

Mary: And so the queen came to rule the king and all his kingdom, and thus became the queen of the night. And so she lived happily ever after. [Birds chirping]

Salem woods

Mercy: But how... how are we here? We're... In the woods. We were in your room. You locked the door.

Mary: There are many doors to many places... For a witch.

Mercy: I never said you were that. I-I'd never point my finger at you. I swear. I wouldn't. I-I won't.

Mary: No. You most certainly won't.

Petrus: Well done, my little hunter. Mmm. Enough of these, and I, too, will grow wings and fly South.

Mercy: [Screams] [Gasping]

Petrus: You only meet two kinds of creatures in the woods... the hunters and the hunted. Thank the moon we are what we are. At least for today. [Scream in distance]

Cotton: The call of a great gray owl, Saturn's mascot. It's nearly time. [Rose groans] A bit faster. It's nearly in position. We must be directly beneath Saturn.

John: Then what?

Cotton: Then we get the one chance, a moment to ask our questions and receive the answers. Then we must kill her before the paralytic wears off.

John: Or she kills us.

Cotton: That would be the most likely outcome. I presume your flintlock will do the trick.

John: Unless it doesn't. A gun puts all your faith in the weapon, not the hand. It either fires, or it don't. 8 out of 10 times, it works. But I don't think we can afford that gamble.

Cotton: Then how about a sword? John: You surprise me, Mather.

Cotton: [Chuckles] I fenced a little at school.

John: Any good?

Cotton: The most fearsome in all the divinity class.

John: [Sighs] Well... This just may do. I should get it.

Hale's cottage

Tituba: What is it?

Mr. Hale: The Samhain is missing.

Tituba: What?

Anne: Why would father be meeting with Mrs. Sibley's servants?

Mrs. Hale: The good lord knows. More "busy-ness," I'm sure. [Chuckles] I swear I don't know what this world comes to. Everyone is all too obsessed with their "busy-ness."

Anne: It's the future, mother. Bringing goods from far away, taking them on still further, it opens new worlds. And it's "business," mother, not "busy-ness."

Mrs. Hale: [Laughs] It's all "busy-ness" to me.

Salem woods

Mercy: [Panting] [Whimpering, gasping][Birds screeching] [Whimpering]

Mary: Now tell him. Say it... this is what you want.

Mercy: Yes! Yes! Yes!

Mary: All the world shall be yours.

John: [Grunting]

Cotton: We're nearly in position... just past the crag. [Bird screeches] This is it. We do it here.

John: Here? I guess I should be grateful you brought me to the second most unpleasant place I've ever seen. Great place to interrogate a prisoner, Mather.

Cotton: It's not I who pick. The old bastard Saturn himself, he's right overhead. We must raise her here and now. Suspend her from that tree directly beneath the sky and let the planet loosen her tongue. How is our Miss Rose holding up?

John: Hasn't blinked an eye.

Cotton: Good. That's good. Hurry. Just a minute to go. [John breathing heavily]

Rose: Aah! John: Ohh! [Grunts]

Cotton: The paralytic is wearing off! [Both grunting]

John: Okay. All right.

Cotton: We're losing the moment! [Rose grunts]

John: Pull! [Rope creaks] There. That should hold it.

Cotton: Just a half moment more, and then she must speak!

Rose: [Laughs] Thank you, sir. May I have some more?

Cotton: God.

Rose: Again. Do it again. [Laughs] The darkness is going to eat you little men.

Cotton: For the love of Christ.

Rose: [Laughs] Bring 'round your two whores. Oh, we will have a party. Gloriana and Mary Sibley. You ran away from big, bad George Sibley, afraid of what he might do. Poor Mary had nowhere to run. She faced down the puritans with the only thing that she had... that bottomless pit between her thighs. And where were you, Captain Alden?!

Cotton: Alden, wait! [John grunts] Cotton: Wait! Yes! Speak, damn you! Saturn compels you to the truth! [Bird screeches]

Rose: [Raspy voice] What would you know?

Cotton: Everything.

Petrus's shack

Petrus: South, my friends. Someday soon, we will fly South. No puritans there and no snow. Like a flea in a blanket we will be... Warm.

Tituba: You will go someplace far warmer than that if you don't remember who's in charge, cunning man.

Petrus: Almost as quiet in her movements as the mistress herself.

Tituba: I taught Mary Sibley everything she knows.

Petrus: And how often it is that apprentice surpasses master.

Tituba: Silence! The Samhain is missing. She's not in Salem. She must be in these woods... your woods.

Petrus: We have not seen her. We did see a witch in the woods tonight, but not Miss Rose. Your mistress, the one you taught everything, including, apparently, how to make her own doors.

Tituba: Take care, cunning little man. It's a dangerous world. Remember whose side you're on.

Salem woods

Cotton: What is the grand rite?

Rose: [Raspy voice] Death.

Cotton: For who?

Rose: For you and all like you.

John: Why?

Rose: For all you've done and to stop all you will do.

Cotton: How?

Rose: Cruor innocentia. Sacrifices consecrate the land to our lord.

Cotton: Cruor innocentia. "Innocent blood." Sacrifices. Then you have not yet begun.

Rose: We have begun. Innocent blood flows.

Cotton: There have been no unexplained deaths, no missing children. You can have committed no sacrifices.

Rose: It's not a sacrifice unless it hurts. Are you hurting, Mather?

John: What is she saying?

Cotton: What do you mean? What do you mean?

Rose: [Groans] [Ropes creaking]

John: Cotton, we have to kill her.

Cotton: No. You tell me what you mean!

Rose: [Gurgling] [Laughs] You think you can dangle me like a puppet? You're the puppets, all of you... puppets! [Spits] [Both grunt] [Deep voice] Neopheyn! Barbas! Aligon! Anaboth! Madicon! Furcas!

Cotton: Her spell has raised the dead! [Grunting] [Corpses groaning]

Salem woods, later

Mary: So, I have found you. [Chuckles] I owe you so much. I remember all you taught me... how to think like a puritan, to see through their greedy eyes... these woods were really mighty ships and houses in the making... and how, one day, we would use their unquenchable desire to seize control.

Rose: All goes exactly as planned.

Mary: And yet, you brought the malum to Salem without my knowledge. Why, Rose?

Rose: John Alden. Mary: He is just a man. I am no mere girl to fall to pieces for a man.

Rose: True malice, like that which powers the grand rite, ferments best in a loveless heart. I have looked into your heart, and it is anything but loveless. You still love John Alden. I couldn't take the chance. There is no part of all this, from your broken heart to the grand rite itself, that I have not planned. I put the very thought in George Sibley's head that he ought to to send John Alden away.

Mary: It was you.

Rose: Not a step have I not foreseen, right down to your bringing the girl here to the woods to kill her.

Mary: And you. How came you to be here?

Rose: Ah, I allowed myself to be captured and interrogated by them.

Mary: [Chuckles] Oh, really?

Rose: Mm-hmm.

Mary: Why?

Rose: To find out, once and for all, what is in John Alden's heart. You should be flattered. All you've become... the poor fool, he still loves you and always will. But I need your heart. I need it broken. And nothing breaks the heart like death.

[Cotton and John screaming] [Corpses groaning]

Rose: I merely saved Salem the cost and your Isaac the trouble of transporting their bodies to the crag.

Mary: Have you met our newest sister?

Rose: [Gasps] [Head thuds] [Corpses groan] [groans]

Cotton: What?

John: I thought you said Saturn would compel her to speak the truth.

Cotton: It did. John: What truth? I heard only riddles.

Cotton: Sometimes, the truth is a riddle.

John: And the answer?

Cotton: I don't know. I must think and then think again. In the meantime, that... Creature is still out here.

John: I spent most nights for many a year alone in the woods knowing there was someone ready to slit my throat in every shadow, behind every tree, but you still got to sleep. [Sighs] Besides, she won't show her face again in Salem. She knows she wouldn't even rate a trial. Straight to the noose, straight to hell.

Cotton: I admire your sangfroid. French for "cold blood." It's a compliment.

John: Thanks. I admire your... [Sighs] Hey, don't hurry me. I'll think of something. Well, you came into these woods a bookworm. You're walking out a hunter.

Cotton: A hunter without a catch. John: Ah, yeah, but that's good... a hungry hunter. That's the most dangerous kind.

Cotton: [Sighs] [Hoof beats] [Horse neighs]

Salem, bordering the woods

Mary: Captain Alden. Reverend Mather.

John: Evening, Mrs. Sibley. You're out late. Mary: I'm often sleepless. And I find the... Night air calms me. And you two?

John: [Clears throat]

Cotton: We were just... Tracking the retrograde movement of Saturn.

Mary: Taken up astrology, Captain?

John: You know what they say. The fault's not in us but the stars.

Mary: I think you may have that the wrong way around.

Cotton: Good night to you both.

Mary: I would ask what really happened to you tonight.

John: But? Mary: You'd never tell me. I know you.

John: Walk you home?

The House of the Seven Gables, bathroom

Tituba: Met the dark man, did you? One of us now, are you? There are plenty of tools in the shed out back... pickaxe, auger, drawknife... and you are somewhere on that list, missy, somewhere between a hammer and a saw. The lady of the house is mine, my lady. Now, you best not forget that.

Mary: I see I got here in time before you could drown the poor girl.

Tituba: Or dunk her as a witch.

Mary: Tituba. Is that any way to talk about your new little sister?

Tituba: You couldn't do it, could you? You looked into those big eyes, and you lost your resolve.

Mary: I looked into those eyes, and I saw myself staring back. And then I knew. There was another way. She cannot point at me and say "witch" when she's one herself. I'll finish here. You know, Mercy, this once lived in the sea, as did we. Men think of themselves as rock, hard as stone. So they are. Hard, brittle, easily broken. Women know that we are mostly water. Sea around us... Sea inside us. When I hurt, I remember that. I remember what water is, what it does. It flows. It changes. It endures far longer than the rock. [Mercy crying] Oh, I know you went through hell this night, as I once did. [Mercy sobbing] Mercy... You will never face hell again... Alone.

Hale's cottage

[Footsteps] [Door closes] [Door creaks]

Anne: Father? [Gasps] Aah!

Mrs. Hale: Come, child. It's time we talked about your father.

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