Episode Number: 18, according to broadcast order. Airdate: February 26, 1995. Director: Brenton Spencer. Writer: Shelly Moore.
Guest Stars: Michael Horse (Jindawga) / Norman Browning (Samuel Bumppo) / Renae Morriseau (Waneema) / Miles Ferguson (young Hawkeye) / Chilton Crane (Rebecca Bumppo) / Robin Hildred (Private Wesson) / David Justason (Private Smythe) / David MacNiven (Private Elliot) / Dan Shea (Sentry).
Other Titles: In German: "Rache" ("Revenge").
A party of redcoats, led by Captain Taylor Shields, leads captured Indians through the snow back to Fort Bennington. One of the captives, a woman, is obviously not an ordinary Indian, as she manages to look proud even though her hands are securely bound. She looks around for a means of escape, while in the midst of her captors. Hawkeye watch the band being brought in, with disapproval on his face, as though he knows that this is not a good idea. He confronts Taylor, and says that this will cause much trouble, that the woman’s husband, a Huron warchief named Jindawga, will kill every settler to free her. Taylor replies that he only took her so that he could persuade Jindawga to talk. Suddenly, as the party nears the fort gate, a settler’s mule breaks loose and causes a momentary disturbance. Seeing her chance, the woman captive breaks through the surrounding soldiers and runs towards the safety of the woods. Captain Shields cries an order to stop her, and redcoats take aim and fire, bringing the woman down, shot in the back.
Captain Shields finds that the woman is still alive, and orders that she be brought into Elizabeth’s quarters, so that she may use her nursing skills to save the woman’s life. Hawkeye tells her that the woman’s name is Waneema. The woman is in agony from her wound, but struggles when Elizabeth tries to help her. To sooth her, Elizabeth asks Hawkeye for the Huron word for friend. “Tia-taro”, he says, and she repeats it to Waneema, to ease her fears. When Taylor tells her that Waneema must not die, Elizabeth blames Taylor for her wounding. Taylor angrily defends his actions, saying the woman is a Huron savage. He pulls from Waneema’s neck a locket, which she tries to grab, and he sees that it is obviously taken from a white woman. He flourishes it in front of Elizabeth’s dismayed face, and reading the back, saying “this inscription reads to “my beloved Rebecca.” I do not think that she is Rebecca, do you? Ask her where she came by this…do you think it was a moral act?” he says as he smugly watches Elizabeth’s face, as she understands that the Rebecca in the inscription is probably dead, killed by one of the Huron.
Hawkeye and Taylor argue in his office, and Taylor repeats that he only wants to meet with Jindawga, to talk to him. Once an ally of the French, they have placed a 200 livres bounty on his head for a recent massacre, and Taylor means to use this to turn Jindawga towards the English. “Jindawga desires to annihilate all white people on this continent. The fact that the French have put a veritable fortune on his head might persuade him to become more exclusionary in his killing,” says Taylor. Hawkeye is disgusted, even more so when Taylor asks if he will use his skills to persuade Jindawga to talk to Taylor. He refuses, and tries to get Taylor to release Waneema, but he refuses. But unknown to both of them, a Huron spy has seen Waneema shot and captured.
Taylor then tries to persuade another woodsman to find Jindawga, and shows him a valuable sword-pistol, one of only 12 that were made by a London gunsmith. The woodsman agrees to locate Jindawga and meet with Taylor. But when the woodsman finds Jindawga, he is ordered bound by the Huron chief. When Jindawga asks why he should meet with Shields, the woodsman tells him that Taylor has his wife. In anger, Jindawga order the woodsman tortured.
In Elizabeth’s quarters, Hawkeye tries to ease Waneema’s pain, but then he too sees the locket. He recognizes it, and, stunned by the sight of it, takes it in his hand. When Waneema tries to regain it, Elizabeth watches in shock as he roughly shakes her, asking where she got it. She proudly answers through her pain that it is a wedding gift from Jindawga. Hawkeye is furious when he hears this. Elizabeth, upset at seeing Hawkeye’s reaction to Waneema’s words, asks where it came from. Hawkeye, sickened at what he holds in his hand, says to her horror…“his first kill. It was my mother’s.”
Running after Hawkeye as he leaves the trading post, Elizabeth tries to calm his fury. When she says that he doesn’t know for certain that Jindawga is his parents’ killer, he says ”yes, I do. His wife said this was a souvenir of his first kill. This was my mother’s necklace. Elizabeth, she wore it every day of her life. Do you know why a warrior keeps such a thing? Because he believes that it brings him power, and he doesn’t keep it unless it is his kill.” When Elizabeth says “so now you’re going to kill him?” Hawkeye replies “yes, I never thought I’d get the chance.” Upset at the dangerous thing that Hawkeye plans, Elizabeth says “I’m not sure you have the right.” Hawkeye pauses, looking at her. “Well, I guess I have the memories,” he says, “and you don’t.” She takes his arm, appalled at what her beloved woodsman is planning. “Be safe” she pleads, as she watches him leaves the fort. Then she asks a soldier to get a message to Chingachgook at the Delaware camp.
Hawkeye runs headlong through the woods in his pain, pausing neither for fallen trees or brush as he sees in his mind’s eye the massacre of his parents when he was a boy. He sees his father Samuel vainly fight off the Huron, as his mother screams for him to run, and, calling him by his Christian name, Nathaniel, he is a young boy again, looking backwards as he awkwardly runs towards the safety of the forest. He sees a young Huron warrior viciously club his mother to the ground, and hears her screams, as she is brutally killed with a war club. The warrior rips the locket from her neck, and
screams a triumphant war cry of his first kill. He runs faster and faster as if trying to outrun his memories, when suddenly Chingachgook stops him.
Hawkeye at first does not recognize his blood brother, but his vision finally clears. Chingachgook understands his pain, yet he tries to dissuade him from vengeance, but Hawkeye can only see his parents, dead at Jindawga’s hands, and swears his revenge.
Back at Fort Bennington, the woodsman, looking drawn and haggard, goes to Taylor and tells him that Jindawga will meet with him at the Delaware village the next morning. When Taylor hands his reward, the rare sword-pistol, to the woodsman, he reaches for it with his bloodily bandaged hands, now minus all ten fingers, burnt off by Jindawga and his Huron warriors. “Fate sometimes plays funny tricks, don’t it” he says, as Taylor turns away in horror and disgust.
At the Delaware village, Hawkeye sits with Chingachgook, smoking in his lodge, and the image of Hawkeye’s father comes to him in a vision, telling Hawkeye not to take revenge for himself, but to leave room for the vengeance of God, which will come in his own good time. A soldier interrupts the pair to tell Hawkeye that Captain Shields has set the meeting in the Delaware camp in the morning. Hawkeye says he will be there, thinking that the vision of his father has drawn the anger from him.
But the next morning, when Taylor meets with Jindawga, Hawkeye cannot contain himself. When he sees Jindawga, he sees in his mind’s eye the murders of his parents, and he attacks him, accusing him of the deed. Taylor, upset that his promising meeting has been compromised by an apparently mad Hawkeye, knocks him out, but Jindawga refuses to talk further, and tells Taylor that every day his wife is not returned a white family will die. The British soldiers are ordered to take Hawkeye back to the stockade, but Chingachgook and his braves stop them. When Taylor tells Chingachgook that Hawkeye is under arrest for ruining his meeting with Jindawga, Chingachgook points out that the meeting was on Delaware land, and under threat of breaking the treaty with the Delaware, Taylor lets Hawkeye go.
Back at the fort, Taylor visits Elizabeth to see if Waneema can be moved. When she asks why, he says that returning her may be the only way to avoid exploding the powder keg that Hawkeye has lit by attacking Jindawga. Elizabeth replies “Hawkeye didn’t start this, you did, when you captured this woman and considered her a pawn, not a human being.” Disgusted by her speaking the truth, Taylor leaves. But Waneema speaks to a surprised Elizabeth in English, and persuades her to go to Jindawga to say she is safe. Otherwise, she tells Elizabeth, “if you have friends outside the fort, prepare to dig their graves.” Elizabeth is afraid, but Waneema says “ a white woman who came alone, that would mean something.” “No, he would kill me,” says a frightened Elizabeth. “Because you come from me, he will spare you,” says Waneema, “otherwise, many will die.” She tells Elizabeth to go out into the woods and build three fires, and gives her a wampum wristband to show that she has come from Waneema. Elizabeth reluctantly agrees.
In the woods, Hawkeye tells Chingachgook that he can see nothing but Jindawga dying at his hands to avenge his parents, but he fears what he wants to do, for his parents taught him differently, that he is not an animal. “So your desire to avenge their deaths may cost you your reason?” Chingachgook asks. “When the rage takes over I can’t think of anything else. I’m like a wolf caught in a leg trap, ready to chew off its’ own leg to escape, “ Hawkeye says. “Why is that so bad? If the wolf doesn’t escape, he dies,” reassures Chingachgook.
Elizabeth goes into the forest, and starts to light the signal fires, but she when she sees more smoke in the distant, she is horrified, knowing that it is from the burning Spencer homestead, its’ family dead at Jindawga’s Hurons hands, and she it too late. She turns and comes face to face with painted Huron warriors, but shows them Waneema’s token, and is taken back to Jindawga’s camp. There Jindawga beats her, saying Waneema was smart, that she sent Elizabeth to him so that he too would have a prisoner. Elizabeth tries to reason with him to save other lives, including Hawkeye’s. “Why do you hate us?” she asks. “With you it is always must be the white man’s way,” cries Jindawga. “You don’t even know me,” Elizabeth bitterly replies. “What do you know of the Huron, what words do you know?” says Jindawga. “Tia-taro” she sadly says, knowing it means little to him now.
He asks Elizabeth about Hawkeye, and when he sees her guarded response, he knows that she is his woman. When she denies it, Jindawga tells her that Hawkeye is the only white man he trusts to return Waneema to him. She finally tells him that Hawkeye is at the Delaware camp. Jindawga goes there, and finds Hawkeye smoking his medicine pipe in his lodge, trying to regain the previous vision, so he can understand what to do. Jindawga comes up close behind him as he sits, and tells Hawkeye to bring his wife to his camp at the mouth of Bear Creek. “I want to kill you,” Hawkeye says evenly. “I will meet you there, and we will fight. I will reunite you with your parents,” Jindawga says. “If you are not there, the white woman with the blue eyes will die,” threatens the Huron chief. Hawkeye now knows that with Elizabeth in mortal danger, he must act and perhaps disobey his father’s vision, or she will die.
Hawkeye and Chingachgook go to the fort to get Waneema, but finds she has died of her wounds. He tells Taylor that Jindawga has Elizabeth, and that she will die if Jindawga finds out. Taylor offers to go along to her rescue, but Hawkeye and Chingachgook refuse his help, knowing they will move quicker through the forest without him. But the Huron spy in the fort has also seen that Waneema has died, and leaves to tell Jindawga. Hawkeye and Chingachgook track Elizabeth’s clumsy trail to the Huron village, but the spy arrives first. Jindawga is told that Waneema is dead, and he pulls a bound Elizabeth roughly to her feet. “What has happened?” she cries. “My wife is dead,” he says, and pushes her towards his braves, watching as they bind a pleading Elizabeth to a stake to burn her alive. Hawkeye and Chingachgook watch as the Huron brandish flaming brands, screeching their war cries, and Hawkeye tells Chingachgook that after they rescue Elizabeth, he will kill Jindawga. “We will drink from his skull together,” says his blood brother, and they attack the distracted Huron from behind as they light the pile of wood on which Elizabeth stands, her hands bound and stretched above her head. Elizabeth sees her outnumbered rescuers fight magnificently, killing Huron left and right as she struggles to free her self, feeling the flames lick at her feet and skirts. “Hawkeye” she cries, and he runs toward her. He yells for her to stretch her hands as wide as she can, and throws his hatchet, cutting her bonds, and she is free.
But in his distraction he is attacked from behind by Jindawga, who taunts him with the image of his dead mother. “She was beautiful, with long yellow hair. She was even more magnificent, dead” he says. Hawkeye fights with all his skill, and as Elizabeth watches, he outfights the Huron chief, finally disarming him, and holds a knife to his throat. “At this moment, my mother would have spared your life,” Hawkeye pauses, then as a stunned Elizabeth watches, he stabs Jindawga in the back. “But then, she was a much better person than I am,” he says, and Jindawga’s lifeless body slides to the ground.
Later, safe in her quarters at Fort Bennington, Elizabeth, trying to reconcile herself to the terrible things she has seen over the past few days, writes in her diary “sometime I hear people speak of Hawkeye, as if he can do anything. That he is somehow beyond fear, or can feel pain, that he is incapable of doing wrong. But the Hawkeye I know is like any man…he suffers, he struggles, sometimes he misses the mark. He is human.” In the woods, Hawkeye walks with the spirit of his father, who tells him that he will be held accountable for what he has done. Before his father disappears, he tells Hawkeye that he loves him. “I miss you father,” Hawkeye says as he hangs his mother’s locket on his spirit tree, “I miss you both.”
All "Hawkeye" episode synopsis are © 2001 by Mark Meader for Wonderland.
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