Claire visits the village of Cranesmuir, whereÂ she comes into conflict with local priest, Father Bain.
In the 20th century, Frank is saying goodbye to Claire as she is about leave for the war. He says that he can ask a friend to have her departure delayed. However, she refuses. She doesn’t feel it is fair to take advantage of his connections while thousands have no choice but to risk their lives in battle. He tells her to take care, and return, and she promises him that she’ll return.
In the 18th century Claire is with Mrs Fitz. She has woken from a daydream in which she is being accused of witchcraft. Unaware of this, Mrs Fitz is telling Claire about the impending Gathering, when the Mackenzie men will arrive to pledge their oath to the clan and to Colum MacKenzie. She adds that Claire’s medicinal skills are very much valued, and that Dougal and Colum will not let her go unappreciated.
While clearing her practice, Claire overhears a disturbance and smashing glass from the kitchen. She asks Mrs Fitz what all the fuss is about. The housekeeper tells Claire that one of her workers, Shona Macneill, has lost her son the previous night. Also that the boy could not be cured because he had visited the Black Kirk.
Claire is summoned to see Colum. He is looking for a massage, as previously provided by his former healer. Claire agrees, and he is pleased with her efforts. He goes on to invite her to attend the Gathering that night, making particular reference to Gwyllyn the Bard.
That eveningÂ Claire meets Laoghaire. They discuss Jamie. Laoghaire says she fancies him, but that his interest is elsewhere. Claire says not to worry, it is women’s place to let men know what is best for them. Jamie joins them, but pays little attention to Laoghaire. He asks Claire to leave with him to change his bandages. She does so, then they wish each other good night.
Next (the following day?) Claire is seen in the castle gardens, collecting plants, and being followed by a complaining Angus. She meets with Geillis Duncan. They discuss the pompous Father Bain and Mrs Fitz’s nephew, Tammas Baxter.
Tammas is ill after having been to the Black Kirk, and Father Bain is intending to perform an exorcism. Claire asks about the boy, suspecting he is ill, and that she may be able to help. Geillis asks Claire what she thinks about the possibility of demonic possession and unknown forces. Claire avoids these questions. Instead she says she believe that Tammas is most likely ill and that she might be able to cure him. Geillis says that she is staying clear of Bain and the boy, and warns Claire to do likewise. Claire, however, is set on helping Tammas.
Claire visits the Bater’s home. There she meets Mrs Fitz, next to a delerious Tammas who is tied and bound to the bed in preparation for an exorcism. Claire examines the boy and declares that she believes him to be suffering from a poison. When Father Bain arrives with Tammas’s mother, he is having none of this, and Mrs Fitz suggests that ClaireÂ leave and let the priest to do his work.
Back at the castle Claire is met by the sight of Jamie with Laoghaire. Claire teases him about this, but he is not pleased by it. Later that evening Murtagh warn Claire to be carefull not to get Jamie into trouble. Also thatÂ Laoghaire is, and always will be, a child, and that Jamie needs a woman.
Claire pays a visit to Cranemuir to see Geillis and stock up on plants and medicines. They discuss Claire’s visit to the Baxter house. Geillis continues to warn her to stay clear of Bain, and that there is more in the world than we can properly understand.
While discussing Bain, the two womem see the priest outside, dragging a boy to see Geillis’s husband Arthur, the Procurator Fiscal. Gaillis explains it is the tanner’s apprentice most likely caught stealing, and that Arthur is sure to punish him harshly, with anything from a whipping to chopping his hand off. Claire is appalled!
Luckily for the accused, at Claire’s request, Geillis has a word with her husband. He agrees to orderÂ a lesser punishment. The boy is then dragged out into the village square to the pillory and has his ear pinned to the stocks.
The two women continue their conversation. This quickly becomes uncomfortable for Claire, as Geillis asks her about her childhood and growing up in Oxfordshire. Jamie arrives and saves Claire from further quizzing, instructing her that Dougal wants her to return to the Castle. Seeing her discomfort at Geillis’s questions, he presses the point.
Outside Jamie and Claire discuss the boy’s fate. Claire asks how long he must suffer. Jamie says that the accused is free leave, but must rip his ear off the nail. Claire is shocked! They decide on a plan to help the apprentice. Claire feigns dizziness and collapses, causing a diversion, allowing Jamie to unpin the boy.
On the way to the castle Claire questions Jamie about the Black Kirk. he tells her it is the devil’s church and a place where young boys visit as a rite of passage to manhood. He also mentions that they may find berries or wood garlic to eat. Claire realises the ‘wood garlic’ is actually convallaria majalis or lily of the valley, a poisonous plant from Prussia.
With this new knowledge, Claire returns to the Baxter house. There they find Tammas is in bad way, Father Bain is giving the last rites. She explains to Mrs Fitz and the priest that she knows that Tammas is suffering from a poison and that she can treat it. Bain is livid! Especially when Mrs Fitz takes Claire side and throws him out. Regardless, Claire continues, giving Tammas a dose of belladonna, after which he slowly but surely recovers. Mrs Baxter is overjoyed! Claire leaves, content in her efforts, but knowing she has made an enemy.
Back at Leoch, Claire recount the encounter with Bain to Jamie. He agrees that she has made an enemy, and that she should be wary of the priest in future. He adds however that Mrs Fitz is of the opinion that Claire is a miracle worker. Although helping raise Colum’s opinion of her, she realises that this may also keep her trapped at the castle.
Later that night, Jamie sits with Claire listening to Gwyllyn’s singing. He translates the song for her, explaining that it is about a woman who travels through stones to another land. And that she travels back to her original world. Claire realises the song parallels her experience. She is invigorated at the prospect of returning to Frank.
Filming of this episode made use of the lovely town of Culross, in Fife. Although, much of the town was painted a dark grey colour for filming, which has reverted to the original white, there is no mistaking this idyllic-looking location.