All hell breaks loose in the penultimate episode of The Witcher's second season, with betrayals on all fronts. The friendship between Nilfgaard and the elves breaks down, Yen has run off with Ciri, and Jaskier says goodbye to his new mice pals after a lovely a capella sing-song together. There's warmth here and there, but the action starts to ramp up as we reach the finale.
Yen and Ciri appear in the house of the woman who took Ciri in as her own in the first season, near Cintra and close to where she met Geralt. She felt safe there, but that's no longer the case—fire-fucker Rience has been here. Once again, someone who helped Ciri is dead, and she's consumed by the grief of it, worrying for Geralt's safety. Ever the opportunist, Yen persuades her that Geralt might have been captured by Nilfgaard and could be held in Cintra—conveniently where the black door she needs to sacrifice Ciri is.
Written by: Mike Ostrowski
Directed by: Louise Hooper
They come across a broken bridge, and Yen encourages Ciri to try to raise it, but it soon becomes clear she isn't ready for such magic as she bleeds from her eyes. Ciri screams in frustration, which then transports them to the other side of the river, giving us a small glimpse into Ciri's teleportation powers. They share a telekinetic moment when Ciri discovers that Yen was going to hand her over, but Yen tells her to run if she wants because she can't do it. Ciri screams that she can't trust her, alerting the Nilfgaardians to their presence.
Meanwhile, Geralt leaves the temple and seeks out Jaskier, who's singing with since. They share a tender hug, and Geralt apologises for leaving him on a mountain before they set off in search of Yen and Ciri. Before that, they discuss Yen, and Jaskier reveals that she suddenly vanished while muttering about a hut, and Geralt realises who they're dealing with: the Deathless Mother, Voleth Meir. She appeared during the beginning of the Conjunction of the Spheres when monsters arrived, so is an ancient and dangerous being.
They meet Yarpen Zigrin and his band of dwarves on their way, who decide to join them on their secret mission—rescuing Ciri. You might remember them from the dragon hunt in season 1 and he's just as much of a sweary bastard as before. Jaskier states the relatable line: "I have no recollection of any of these people," which is a big 2021 mood.
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Before long, the convoy meets Yen and Cirioutside of Cintra, fighting off the Nildgaardians. Geralt saves Ciri and draws his blade to Yennefer's neck, instructing Jaskier to take him home to Kaer Morhen. Geralt is obviously distressed that Yen would betray him and Ciri like this, yet the two head off in search of Voleth Meir. They are too late; after feeding off enough misery from Yen, Ciri, Fringilla, and Francesca, she has broken free and is on the hunt for a vessel. No guesses for who that'll be.
After the birth of the baby, the elves have decided they'd rather not fight for Nilfgaard. Fringilla deals with more brutishness from Hake, and eventually, she appears briefly in Aretuza, asking her uncle Artorious for help. Much like Hake and Cahir, Artorious states that he's glad she's realised that she's out of her depth and not that powerful, which she takes as a threat. People have been grossly underestimating Fringilla so far, so she does what every powerful sorceress does: She uses a potion to paralyze Cahir, Hake, and other soldiers, and she slowly kills them. She stabs a knife slowly through Hake's eye, and it's just disgusting, really. She spares Cahir, stating that she expects him to rave about her to the Emperor when he arrives. Maybe you should have let her be a leader, Hake.
Francesca and Filavandrel spend a day or so in bliss with their baby before it all goes pear-shaped. Remember how I said Voleth Meir feeds on despair? Francesca was told if she remains onside with Nilfgaard, she'll have her baby. Well, now that she's had a change of heart, she's punished for it. Sadly, the much-wanted baby is murdered during the night. Grief consumes them both, and it's clear that this alliance is over, as Francesca is quite likely to seek revenge.
Now that Voleth Meir is free of her prison—despite the first Witcher's intentions that she'd remain there forever—she seeks out Ciri on the path to Kaer Morhen and possesses her. Grab all the elixirs you can, because it looks like there's going to be a big fight in Kaer Morhen.
Geralt of Trivia
- Jaskier's favourite singing mouse is called George.
- Francesca wants to call the baby Fiona, while unaware of Ciri's existence.