02x07 - The Witchfinder

Episode 2.07 - The Witch Finder

FOREST OF CAMELOT

Merlin: Hors, beride tha heofenan…

He returns working, a woman, Cathryn, call him.

Cathryn: Hey! Did you see it? The smoke! Did you see it?!

Merlin: No… I saw nothing.

Cathryn: Are you blind? You were right here! It was magic, I tell you! There's sorcery here! We must tell the King!

Merlin: No… Wait!

* * * Opening Credits * * *

GREAT HALL OF THE CASTLE

The woman tells what she saw to the King

Uther: It was sorcery you saw, you're certain of it?

Cathryn: Yes, sire.

Uther: And you swear this, before your king?

Cathryn: i swear it

Arthur: Perhaps your eyes deceived you. A trick of the light.

Cathryn: The smoke was alive, I tell you. I feared for my life.

Uther: I thank you for bringing this to my attention. Your loyalty will not go unrewarded.

Cathryn: Thank you, sire. (she leaves)

Uther: It cannot continue.

Arthur: I will hunt down those responsible, father. I promise they will not escape unpunished.

Uhter: No. Stronger methods are called for. Send for the witchfinder.

Gaius: Sire, is it necessary to resort to such measures?

Uther: The witch finder is a trusted ally, Gaius. His help will be invaluable.

Gaius: Of course.

GAIUS HOUSE

Gaius sermonizes Merlin

Gaius: How many times, Merlin? How many times must I drive it into that thick skull of yours? Your magic is a secret to be guarded with your life. What were you thinking?

Merlin: I… I weren't thinking.

Gaius: Well, think, boy, think!

Merlin: It was just a bit of fun.

Gaius: It was magic and it was seen.

Merlin: You're right… I'm sorry.

Gaius: You must hide the book. Anything that can connect you to sorcery in any way.

Merlin: What, now?

Gaius: Yes, now, Merlin. The man that Uther has send for…I know him.

Merlin: The witchfinder?

Gaius: Some know him by that name. I know him as Aredian. He is a force to be reckoned witch.

Merlin: But I'm not a witch. (finding this amusing) Look, no dress or anything… (Gaius not kidding) I'll get the book.

CASTLE COURTYARD

A man dressed dark clothes arrive, with his chariot carrying a cage

Aredian: (to guards) I am expected.

CHAMBER OF MORGANA

Same time, Morgana is terrified to see arriving Aredian. She observes him from her window.

Guenièvre: Is that him?

Morgan: Yes

Guenièvre: What's that cage for?

Morgan: It hardly bears thinking about.

BOARDROOM OF THE CASTLE:

Uther and Arthur come in the hall to welcome Aredian

Arthur: So, where has he been all this time?

Uther: In foreign lands. Wherever the pursuit of sorcery takes him.

Arthur: He does all this in your name?

Uther: The witch finder serves no-one. He is a law unto himself.

Aredian: Do you smell it? Do you smell it, Uther?

Uther: Aredian…

Areydian: It's all around us. The foul stench of sorcery. It's infected your great city like a contagion.

Uther: I welcome you to Camelot, Aredian. Thank you for making such

Aredian: Well, let's hope I am not too late, hmm? For every hour counts in the war against sorcery. Un checked, it spreads like a disease. It seeks out the young and the old, the weak and the able, the fair and the foul of heart alike. You have grown lazy, Uther. You have grown idle. Your, once, noble Camelot is rotten to the core. You stand on the brink of dark oblivion.

Arthur: I am at your disposal, Aredian. The knights will aid you in any way they can.

Aredian: You must be Arthur.

Arthur: I must be.

Aredian: You are a great warrior. The finest this kingdom has ever known.

Arthur: Thank you…

Aredian: So, you won't be offended when I say that I shall have no need of you or your knights. The subtle craft of sorcery can only be fought by yet subtle means. Methods honed over decades of study. Methods known only to myself.

Uther: We are grateful for your help.

Aredian: Gratitude alone can't keep a man alive. You must put food in his belly.

Uther: I will pay your price, Aredian, whatever it may be.

Aredian: I will bid you good night.

Uhter: Aredian? When do you begin?

Aredian: I have already begun.

STREET OF CAMELOT

Gaius walks with Merlin. Aredian observe them.

Aredian: Gaius, isn' it? I never forget a face.

Gaius: Nor I, Aredian.

Aredian: A physician now, I hear.You always did have s thirst for knowledge.

Gaius: Scientific knowledge.

Aredian: Of course. (looking Merlin)

Gaius: My assistant, Merlin.

Aredian: Merlin…

Gaius: May your investigations prove fruitful, Aredian. However, you'll have excuse us, we have work to do.

Aredian: Naturally. Merlin? I have a few questions I would like you to answer. Please be at my chambers in an hour.

Merlin nods a bit scared

IN AREDIAN'S CHAMBERS

Aredian ask Merlin. He casts confusion on the explanation of Merlin.

Aredian: You are aware then, that sorcery has been practiced in the vicinity of Camelot?

Merlin: Yes, I mean… Apparently.

Aredian: No, it cannot denied. There was a witness.

Merlin: Yes, I know.

Aredian: Did you also know that the woman has named you as a witness?

Merlin: But…

Aredian: I have already spoken to her. She was quite clear on the matter.

Merlin: But, I wasn't a witness.

Aredian: Sorry, perhaps I misheard. Do you deny that you were present at the time of the incident?

Merlin: No. I were here.

Aredian: So you saw it, the horse conjured from the smoke?

Merlin: I saw the smoke, but it was only smoke. I saw nothing else.

Aredian: Are you saying that she lies?

Merlin: No, I didn't say that. I said I didn't see what she saw.

Aredian: Hmmm. How can that be, I wonder? How can one person see something and the other not?

Merlin: I can't explain it.

Aredian I am at a loss as to explain it myself. Unless it was you performed the magic.

Merlin: It wasn't.

Aredian: Can you prove that it wasn't?

Silence

Merlin: No.

Aredian: Hmmm. That will be all. For now.

GREAT HALL OF THE CASTLE

Aredian (to Beatrice): Speak. Do not be afraid.

Beatrice (completely terrified): I… I was drawing water from the well, sire, when I saw them. Faces… In the water, sire. Terrible faces… Like people who were drowned… Screaming… Screaming…

Merlin (to Gaius): I haven't done anything. I promise.

Aredian (to Annis): Tell them what you saw.

Annis: A goblin. Dancing on the coals, it was. Dancing in the flames. And it spoke, sire… My heart near stopped for fear of it.

Aredian (to Uther): As you have heard, my lord, the incident in the woods was only the beginning.

Rowena: There was a sorcerer, sire, in the square. There were creatures jumpng right out of this mouth.

Aredian: What manner of creature?

Rowena: Toads, sire. Great, green, slimy things as big as your fist!

Aredian: The sorcerer laughs in your face! Even now, magic flourishes on the streets of Camelot.

Uther: I scarcely believe it.

Aredian: Yet it is the truth, my lord. Fortunately, I have utilized very facet of my craft to bring this matter to a swift resolution.

Uther: The sorcerer… You have a suspect?

Aredian: Oh, I do, my lord. I regret to say they stand among us in this very room. My methods are infallible. My findings incontestable. The facts point to one person and one person alone. The boy, Merlin.

Arthur: Merlin?! You can't be serious?

Gaius: This is outrageous! You have no evidence.

Aredian: The tools of magic cannot be hidden from me. I am certain that a thorough search of the boy's chamber will deliver us all we need.

Uther: Merlin?

Merlin: I have nothing to hide from him.

Uther: Very well. Guards, restrain the boy. Let the search begin.

GAIUS HOUSE

The knights upset all the objects. Merlin isn't here.

Gaius: Careful, please! That's my life's work!

Aredian: Comb every inch. The sorcerer is a master of concealment.

Arthur: There's nothing here, Aredian.

Aredian: I'll be the judge of that. Over there, behind this tapestry. And there, upend that stool. Be sure to check for hollow legs. There, within those powder jars.

Leon: Here!

Aredian: An amulet of enchantment. Were you aware, Physician, that your assistant kept instruments of sorcery?

Gaius: No.

Aredian: Well, our work is done. I must inform the king.

Gaius: Aredian! I know for certain that the amulet does not belong to Merlin.

Aredian: Ho? Well, who does it belong to, then?

Gaius: I belongs to me.

JAIL OF CAMELOT

Arthur releases Merlin.

Arthur: You're free to go.

Merlin (crossing Gaius in the corridor of jail) : Gaius! What's going on?

Gaius: Say nothing, Merlin. Do nothing. Promise me!

GAIUS HOUSE

Merlin come and observe the room disheveled.

CASTLE OF CAMELOT

Uther: Gaius has served me with unfailing dedication. Without his knowledge, his wisdom, I would not be sitting here today.

Aredian: You have shown great faith in him, sire. Great faith indeed…considering that he was known to practice sorcery.

Arthur: Gaius? Mmm. You're mistaken.

Uther: No Arthur; He speaks the truth. I am well aware of his past, and I have every reason to believe he has turned his bacon sorcery.

Aredian: Until now.

Uther: We don't know that. This amulet you found could just be a stupid mistake.

Aredian: Or maybe he has fallen back into old habits.

Arthur: We must give him the benefit of doubt, surely?

Aredian: Why? Anyway, There is a sure way to establish his guilt.

Uther: I know your method are effective, Ardian, but Gaius is an old man, he could not withstand such…treatment.

Aredian: It is the only way to rid your mind of doubt.

JAIL OF CAMELOT

Gaius: What time is it?

Aredian: Time for you confess.

Gaius: The amulet was a relic from the past, a keepsake.

Aredian: But such artifacts are banned on pain of death, surely you must know this?

Gaius: I was wrong to have kept it. I am grievously sorry for it.

Aredian: Well, that's a good start. It's an excellent start. But not nearly enough, I'm afraid.

Gaius: Aredian, I…

Aredian: Guards!

Laster, he asks again Gaius until he is tired.

Aredian: Was your conscience clear when you practiced magic in the days of the great purge?

Gaius: I have not used magic for many years…

Aredian: Your assistant kept instruments of sorcery…

Gaius: It belongs to me.

Aredian: So if someone else were to practice magic…

Gaius: No, no!

Aredian: If you're an enemy of this kingdom, you're an enemy of your king.

Gaius: No! My conscience is clear.

The question is finished.

Gaius: I'd like a drink of water, please.

Aredian: And you shall have one, When you have confessed.

Gaius: Then I shall die of thirst, Aredian.

CAVE OF THE GREAT DRAGON

The Dragon: What is wrong, young warlock? You look so pale.

Merlin: I did a stupid thing. A stupid, stupid thing. And now Gaius is going to die for it!

The dragon: Gaius means nothing to me.

Merlin: But he means a great deal to me!

The dragon: Very well, tell me what was happened.

Merlin: A witch finder is come. He's arrested Gaius for sorcery, but I am the sorcerer.

The dragon: Yes, I suppose you are.

Merlin: Well, I'm going to confess. It's the only way to save him.

The dragon: The your stupidity continues.

Merlin: I won't sacrifice a friend to save myself!

The dragon: Bravely spoken. But Gaius is already doomed. If you confess, the witch finder will just burn you both.

Merlin: But it's my fault! Don't you understand?

The dragon: All too well, young warlock, but understand this, if you we're die, you would endanger the lives of all those that rely upon you.

Merlin: There must be something I can do. There must be. Please, help me.

The dragon: Merlin, I see you are distressed by this. But I cannot help you, because I do not know how to.

Merlin: I can't just stand by and watch Gaius die. I can't!

The dragon: I am sorry.

JAIL OF CAMELOT

Aredian: You're a traitor, you're an imposter. Sorcery is your only master.

Gaius: I serve only my king.

Aredian: Huh! In what way ave you serve him? You have lied to him, you have broken his laws, you have betrayed his trust.

Gaius: I have saved his life, I have treated his ward, I have protected his only son!

Aredian: You have treated his ward?

Gaius: I have striven to help all those in need. It is a physician's duty to do so.

Aredian: The lady Morgana?

Gaius: Among others.

Aredian: For what malady does she receive this treatment?

Gaius: She…she suffers from nightmares.

Aredian: I see.

Gaius: But as I said, I fell it is my duty to attend to the needs of…

Aredian: Yes, yes. You seem very keen to change the subject, Gaius. Perhaps I should question her myself.

Gaius fear to Morgana.

Morgana is asked in turn.

Aredian: There's no need to be concerned, my lady, I won't detain you long. There's just a small detail I wish to clarify. Now, it is true, is it not, that you have received treatment for nightmares? And it was Gaius, the court physician, who administered these treatments, these potions?

Morgana (to low voice) : Yes.

Aredian: I'm sorry, could you speak up?

Morgana: Yes.

Aredian: Thank you. Now, you may go. You don't happen to know what was in these potions, I suppose?

Morgana: Oh, no.

Aredian: No, of course not. You are not a physician after all. So, for all you know, these potions could have been magical, your dreams, the product of an enchanted elixir?

Morgana: Oh, I had these dreams before Gaius started treating me.

Aredian: But have they got better or worse since Gaius began treating you?

Morgana: Worse.

Aredian: As I thought. Thank you. You have been most helpful.

Aredian wake up Gaius completely tired.

Aredian: Gaius? Are you prepared to confess?

Gaius: I'd rather die first.

Aredian: Good. And die you shall. But not alone, I'm pleased to say you shall have company.

Gaius: What?

Aredian: Merlin and The lady Morgana are to join you in the flames.

Gaius: No! This is a trick.

Aredian: You have corrupted them, Gaius, and they must answer to their king. Unless…

Gaius: Unless what?

BOARDROOM OF THE CASTLE

Aredian bring Gaius in front the king. He create him as a guilty.

Aredian: Confess! Confess!

Gaius: I am a sorcerer, sire. I am responsible for conjuring the smoke. I am guilty of partisans magic in Camelot. The goblin, the faces in the well… I am the sorcerer who conjured the toad from his mouth.

Uther: You have betrayed me, Gaius. You have betrayed your friends. But above all, you have betrayed yourself. By the laws of Camelot, I must sentence you…to death.

Aredian: The sorcerer will be purged of his magic by means of fire! He shall be burned at the stake tomorrow at dawn! Bear witness and heed this lesson!

Merlin (he advances to Aredian) : You are a liar!

Aredian: Guards!

Merlin: You are a liar!

Arthur: I'll deal with this. (he escort Merlin to the jail) I know you're upset, I know you're angry, it's all right. I'm not throwing you in jail.

Merlin: Ten what are you doing?

Arthur: I'm breaking the law. I can only give you a few minutes.

Merlin: They wouldn't let me see you. There was nothing Icould do…

Gaius: I know…Iunderstand.

Merlin: I can't believe it. I can't believe Uther could do this to you.

Gaius: He had no choice. Once Aredian had found the amulet.

Merlin: I didn't even know you had such a thing.

Gaius: It isn't mine.

Merlin: Why did you say it was?

Gaius: I was trying to protect you.

Merlin: I don't know what to say.

Gaius: It's all right, Merlin, you don't have to say anything.

Merlin: Yes, I do. The amulet isn't mine either.

Gaius: Then how did it get there?

Merlin: Aredian.

Gaius: Aredian?

Merlin: There's no other explanation.

Gaius: But why?

Merlin: All that matter is if I can prove he planed it, you're saved!

Gaius: No. You must let this go.

Merlin: You are falsely accused. I have a chance to prove that. I must take that chance.

Gaius: No. You must not.

Merlin: I don't understand. Do you want to die?

Gaius: No. But neither do I want you to die. And die you surely will if you get too close to Aredian. He will trap you, Merlin, he will manipulate you, and without ever meaning to, you will incriminate yourself…but…You must let this go.

Merlin: I must let you go?

Gaius: To do otherwise would be an act of suicide.

GAIUS HOUSE

Merlin look the building of the pyre in the courtyard.

JAIL OF CAMELOT

Aredian: Ah, Gaius. I hope you have found some relief, now that your ordeal is over.

Gaius: Your concern is touching, Aredian. Now, will you please get out to my sight?

Aredian: Of course. I just thought you'd hear the news, that's all…

Gaius: What news?

Aredian: My investigation have begun.

Gaius: Begun? But you've already extracted my confession.

Aredian: Indeed. Which just leaves Merlin and the lady Morgana.

Gaius: But we struck a bargain!

Aredian: Pah! I don't bargain with sorcerers. (he laughs)

MORGANA'S CHAMBER

Aredian is in morgana's chamber to ask her.

GAIUS HOUSE

Gwen: Merlin? He won't let go!

Merlin: What happened?

Gwen: The witch finder's questioning Morgana again. I'm worried, Merlin. She's close to breaking point.

Merlin: That's what he does. In the end. you confess whether you're guilty or not.

Gwen: What did you mean?

Merlin: Gaius was set up. Aredian planted that amulet.

Gwen: But why would he do such a thing?

Merlin: Aredian is paid to catch sorcerers. Maybe he doesn't care if someone is guilty. Maybe he gets confessions by lying, by planting evidence. As long as he gets a confession, he gets his money.

Gwen: Even if this is true, what can we do without proof?

Merlin: Get some.


AREDIAN'S CHAMBER

Merlin come in Aredian's chamber, and search. He stripping the bed.

Merlin: Tospringe (The cupboard open, he takes flower petals)

NOISE FROM OUTSIDE

Merlin: Daefte that bedd (the cover are repair)

Aredian come and sees the cupboard open, he thinks there is someone, but he sees anybody.

GAIUS HOUSE

Gwen: This is hopeless.

Merlin: Keep looking.

Gwen: We don't even know whether this flower means anything.

Merlin: No, we don't, but it's all we're got. Here. Belladonna.

Gwen: "For the alleviation of ulcers, allergies, muscular inflammation…" This is hopeless, Merlin.

Merlin: Wait, listen. "Under certain conditions, a tincture of the flower can produce hallucinations."

Gwen: So?

Merlin: Aredian's witnesses. It wasn't magic they were seeing, it was visions.

Gwen: It makes sense…If he's faking the evidence…But how can we prove it?

Merlin: Aredian's too clever to have given the tincture to them directly. They must've got it from someone else.

Gwen: They could've been getting it from anyone.

Merlin: Is there anything, anything at all that these people had in common?

Gwen: They sere all women.

Merlin: But that doesn't tell us anything.

Gwen: Yes, it does! What's the one thing only women would buy? Things to make them look beautiful.

APOTHECARY'S SHOP

Apothecary: Gwen?

Gwen: Do you sell a tincture of belladonna?

Apothecary: What's this all about?

Gwen: Please, it's important.

Apothecary: Well, I think. I've got some somewhere. But what you'd wanting with eye drops in the middle of the night, I really don't want to know.

Gwen: Eye drops?

Apothecary: Yes, women use them to make their eyes more beautiful.

Merlin: Where did you get this?

Apothecary: Well, my usual suppliers.

Merlin: Are you sure you didn't get it from someone else?

Apothecary: Of course, I'm sure. Now, if it's all the same to you, I'd like to get some sleep.

Gwen: It was Aredian who gave you the belladonna.

Apothecary: I don't know what you're talking about.

Merlin: But you know that Gaius will be executed tomorrow, don't you?

Apothecary: That has nothing to do with me.

Merlin: That has everything to do with you. Aredian's witness saw visions. Visions produced by the belladonna in these eye drops. If we can prove this, we have a chance of saving Gaius.

Apothecary: He…forced me to sell it. He said he'd kill me if I said anything to anyone.

Gwen: But it was him? It was Aredian?

Apothecary: Yes, It was him.

Gwen: Thank you.

Merlin: Thank you.

GAIUS HOUSE

Merlin gathered every proof.

Merlin: That's it. We've got everything we need.

Gwen: But is it enough?

Merlin: We've got a witness as well, surely that's enough.

Gwen: It's still our word against Aredian's.

Merlin: Gwen, we don't have a choice! By dawn tomorrow, Gaius will be dead!

Gwen: Merlin, we've got to give Uther something he cannot deny, something not even Aredian can talk his way out of.

Merlin: I'll be as quick as I can!

AREDIAN'S CHAMBER

Aredian is a deep sleep, but Merlin succeed to enter in the room.

Merlin: Hly…Hly min next bebod…ceolwaerc

GAIUS HOUSE

Gwen wait Merlin's return patiently.

Gwen: Come on, Merlin, come on…

JAIL OF CAMELOT

Aredian: Good morning, Gaius.

GAIUS HOUSE

Gwen: Merlin! Where have you been?

Merlin: Everything's in place.

Gwen: But Gaius has already left the dungeons!

Merlin: Then…Then we have to delay the execution!

Gwen: How?!

Merlin: Arthur…I'll speak to Arthur.

Gwen: No! Leave Arthur to me.

They run until pyre.

COURT OF CAMELOT

Gaius arrive in the Aredian's cage. Aredian pull Gaius until pyre.

Arthur: Easy there! Show him some respect!

Gwen: Excuse me…excuse me…I need to get through…sorry…Excuse me…Arthur! Arthur, Arthur, you've got to stop this.

Arthur: I can't, Gwen. You know I can't.

Gwen: Merlin has proof that Gaius is innocent!

Arthur: My father has passed sentence. Nothing I can do.

Gwen: You can do the right thing, Arthur Pendragon! You can show some faith in a loyal friend, or stand by and watch an innocent man die.

Arthur: Guenièvre…

Gwen: You did it to my father. Are you willing to let it happen again? And you can stop looking at me like that. I know I'm only a servant. I thought you were a prince. So start behaving like one.

Arthur: Wait!

GREAT HALL OF CAMELOT

Merlin: Sire, the witnesses saw nothing but hallucinations…induced by the belladonna in these eye-drops.

Uther: (to witnesses) And you bought this belladonna from this man? (to apothecary) Where did you get it from? Don't be afraid. No harm will come to you here.

Apothecary: The witch finder…He gave them to me.

Uther: Did he tell you what it was for?

Apothecary: No. Only that if I did not sell it, he'd have me burnt at the stake.

Uther: (to Aredian) How do you answer to these accusations?

Aredian: They are absurd. The boy has clearly concocted these lies in the hope of saving his master.

Merlin: Then you won't mind if we search your chambers?

Uther: Silence! You have no authority.

Arthur: Father, let's settle this once and for all. If what Merlin says in wrong, then he must bear the consequences. But if there is some truth in what he says…

Aredian: I have nothing to hide.

AREDIAN'S CHAMBER

The chamber is searched thoroughly.

Aredian: You're wasting your time.

Arthur: The cupboard over there.

Amulets fall in cupboard.

Aredian: These things don't belong to me! This is a trick! That boy plots against me!

Suddenly, Aredian spit a toad from his mouth.

Uther: Sorcerer! (Aredian catches Morgana, and takes her as hostage). Aredian, think very carefully about what you are doing. You'll never escape from Camelot alive.

Aredian: I will if you value the life of your ward.

Merlin: Forbearnan!

Aredian burns his hand with his knife, then he bumps on the coffer, and falls in the tower.

GAIUS HOUSE

Uther: Gaius. I'm glad I found you here.

Gaius: As am I, my lord. I thought I would never see these chambers again.

Uther: If anything was damaged in the search, I will be only too glad to replace it.

Gaius: You're very kind, my lord.

Uther: Aredian…I can still scarcely believe that he was a sorcerer.

Gaius: Indeed. Was there some reason you wished to see me?

Uther: Yes…I…I wanted to say, I'm sorry if you suffered at his hands.

Gaius: But I did not suffer at his hands, Uther. I suffered at yours. He worked for you, my lord. He was merely following your orders.

Uther: But I was deceived…

Gaius: No. You were deceived long before Aredian, for you deceived yourself. You see foes where there are friends, you see sorcerers where there are but servants. I am not the first to be wrongly accused in your war against magic. And not all have been as lucky as I.

Uther: I assure, Gaius, every measure will be taken to ensure that nothing like this will happen again.

Gaius: I hope that is true. For all our sakes. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have work to do.

Night falls, Gaius serves dinner.

Gaius: What I don't understand is how you knew he'd concealed evidence in his chamber.

Merlin: Oh, just a hunch, really.

Gaius: I see. And the toad?

Merlin: That…I…er…can't explain.

Gaius: Hmm. I can hardly explain it myself. Unless, of course…you put it there.

Merlin: OK, Gaius, fair enough, I promise I will never save your life again.

Gaius: Promise?

Merlin: Absolutely. (they laugh)

Gaius: Honestly Merlin, the toad was a step too far.

Merlin: I know, I know, but you should have seen the look on his face!

They laugh again.