Synopsis of 2×12: Bash unravels the truth of the twins’ murder while Catherine ties up some loose ends concerning her dead husband’s affairs, one of which is Diane du Portier. Greer leaves the castle for good, and Francis and Louis have a metaphorical and literal stick fight over Mary.
A lot of this season’s mysteries were wrapped up neatly this episode, not unlike how neatly Catherine wrapped that stunning necklace around Diane du Portier’s throat before strangling her to death.
For good measure, she did hit her over the head with a shovel a few times first. Makeup department had way too much fun with the blood for that head wound. Chica should have been dead within minutes at that rate.
Anyway, this week started off with Francis parceling off Narcisse’s land. The king hands most of it over to other nobles to keep the peace, but Bash and Kenna get their own parcel. With a lot of area left over, Mary suggests that Francis should reward some of the loyal Protestant nobles the remaining parcels; of course, she recommends Louis Conde should be one of the recipients.
Francis doesn’t have much of a problem with this until he sees Mary grab Conde’s arm after Conde refuses to take the land Francis allotted him. It’s a particular sore spot because Mary won’t let Francis get within five feet of her without flinching, but apparently she’s all uncharacteristically grabby around Conde. Which, to be fair, does seem a little unrealistic. With Mary’s trauma, physical contact or proximity to anyone, probably even her friends, seems like it should be more limited or strained.
After all this nonsense, Francis and Conde get into a stick fight during a party at court, because, you know, why the hell not trot your problems out in front of French nobles and ruin the party for everyone. Way to go, guys. Now everyone knows that you’re fighting over Mary.
Bashing each other bloody with sticks is not the way to soothe your man pain. You’re adults. You rule a bloody country. Get your shit together and stop giving Freud more than enough material to work with.
The stick fight ends and Francis tells Mary that their marriage has to appear stronger if she is to survive. Francis knows that Conde loves Mary, and Francis tells her that there can be no question as to the legitimacy of their heir if she wants to maintain her rule and her life. Mary doesn’t take kindly to her husband’s advice, but eventually agrees, arranging for a match between Lola and Conde to ease tensions and stop rumors of infidelity. At the end of the episode, Francis and Mary begin reconciling.
The other minor subplot this week involving Mary’s ladies is that Greer gets banished from the castle after her husband’s ledgers are revealed to contain transactions to the rebel Protestants who attacked the castle.
Meanwhile, Bash brought his mother to court to give her some of his new land. Diane du Portier is just as hateful toward Catherine as she always is – but Catherine’s too busy running off into the snow with visions of her dead twins and dead husband to give her more than a passing thought.
Speaking of running into the woods, Catherine nearly dies having another round of ghost-relations with Henry, this time in the snow. Luckily, Bash rescues Catherine before she freezes to death. I also don’t understand how Catherine can be gesturing and chattering away literally three feet from a crowd of people in the castle hallways and yet everyone’s either super self-involved or thinks that this is just normal Catherine at this point that nobody does anything.
While all of this is happening, Claude is trying to investigate the death of her siblings. Bash brings in Claude’s old nanny, Lady Yvonne, who breaks down and tells her that King Henry drugged and raped her while she was supposed to be watching the babies. When she woke up, she came back to the nursery and found the twins froze to death because the window was unlatched. To cover up her negligence, she shoved the rosettes down the twins’ throats.
Which sounds convincing, except it turns out Diane du Portier came in and unlatched the windows to spite Henry for sleeping with Catherine. Bash figures out the truth and banishes his mother, but not before Diane tells him that Kenna sold Bash out when she was trying to legitimize him. Bash and Kenna have a huge argument which ends with Bash announcing that there are some things which are unforgivable.
Catherine finds out the truth of what happened to the twins, and finally banishes her visions of her dead family.
She then proceeds to strangle Diane.