TV Recap: “Motherland: Fort Salem” Season 3, Episode 8 “Petra’s Favorite Pen”

Welcome back for another recap of Freeform’s Motherland: Fort Salem. The group works to track down Scylla’s whereabouts in hopes of rescuing her. Petra tries to keep her cool at Fort Salem and Tally joins Alder on her search for another piece of the First Song.    

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Taylor Hickson, Jessica Sutton, Ashley Nicole Williams

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Taylor Hickson, Jessica Sutton, Ashley Nicole Williams

Please note this recap contains spoilers for season 3, episode 8 “Petra’s Favorite Pen”

Tally (Jessica Sutton) is looking into the past and finds herself on a snowy field surrounded by mountains. A woman is being chased by a kingsguard and Tally follows them into a cave. The woman is cornered, they want her song, so she starts singing, but her work begins to trap everyone, including her in massive blocks of ice. Tally snaps back to the present and says she has to go to Germany. The First Song is the only way to stop the witch bomb.

Raelle (Taylor Hickson) doesn’t think she’ll use her power to end the world, but Tally tells her she might not have a choice. In her vision of Raelle it didn’t look like her friend had much control over what was happening. Adil (Tony Giroux) asks how they know the First Song will work. Alder (Lyne Renee) says they must trust the Mother. Abigail (Ashley Nicole Williams) tells her that’s not enough. She asks them to trust her. Before she leaves, Tally makes Raelle promise she won’t use the witchbomb. Abigail suggests they go with her, but Tally insists they stay there and find Scylla.

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Lyne Renee, Jessica Sutton

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Lyne Renee, Jessica Sutton

Anacostia (Demetria Mckinney) walks out of Cession diner while Nicte (Kandyse McClure) and her group follow a few steps behind. Knowing she’s being followed, Anacostia turns a corner then grabs Nicte. “What are you doing out here, Army?” “Looking for you Batan.”

Tally and Alder have made it to Germany. Alder comments on their whereabouts and how the global Mycelium network cannot break through ice. Tally asks Alder to promise that if anything goes bad in the cave, she’ll get the song and save herself. “If what you told me is true the fate of the world hangs in balance and all that matters is the song.” Alder makes the promise.

Back in the Cession a young wounded soldier is lying on a cot. Thelma (Olivia Lucas) refers to her as a deserter. Raelle talks to the girl whose wounds are days old. She asked why the Fixers didn’t help her. The girl says the Civilian Oversight Committee didn’t let them come, they were sent into battle with no medics. Raelle heals her. The soldier recognizes Raelle, “I know you from her memories.” Raelle asks if the soldier knows where Scylla is. The girl nods.

General Petra Bellwether (Catherine Lough Haggquist) has just returned to her office only to find President Silver (Victor Webster) sitting at her desk. Petra calls it a nice surprise and Silver is happy that she chose that word because he’s surprised at the lack of progress of the invasion. He says the U.S. has a formidable army, so why are they being kept at bay by a half assed Cession militia? “We should be crushing them,” he says. He orders Petra to quit it with the slow plan and break the stalemate. “When I bring in your daughter I might be lenient.”

Alder and Tally make their way to the cave where they find several preserved bodies in the ice. Tally points out there’s no vessel for the First Song, it’s inside the woman. Alder says they’ll have to wake the witch.

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Taylor Hickson

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Taylor Hickson

The Cession soldier tells the group they didn’t know who Scylla was, but they were forced to link with her in hopes for intel on the militia. She says Scylla blocked her mind with memories of Raelle. She’s being held in New Tenasi at a school they call the Slaughterhouse and the Camarilla are determined to break her. Thelma orders one of her men to take the girl away and find out what she knows about the base. Thelma tells the group that she can’t spare the troops, and Raelle offers to go alone. Thelma says that’s a suicide mission and Abigail says they do those best. She’s going with Raelle; they have to save Scylla. Abigail offers that they can gather intel too and if they get caught, then Silver has no reason to keep up the invasion.

Nicte leads Ana to a service garage where they engage in small talk and insults. Anacostia comments on the size of Nicte’s “army” and the former Spree calls forth hundreds of birds. She looks at Ana and says, “this is an army.” The creatures fly back to the rafters and Nicte presses further, “why are you here?” Ana wants to know if she can track the Marshal. Nicte doesn’t think finding President Wade will stop what’s already brewing. Also, Wade’s not a witch. Ana says she’s on their side, but Nicte doesn’t want to pin her hopes on a politician. Anacostia leaves.

Raelle, Adil and Abigail are positioned outside the Slaughterhouse where two guards are stationed. They debate how to get inside. The scanners will detect their invisibility work; using a storm would damage the building and possibly hurt Scylla. So they’ll have to fight. Adil points to a swing set and suggests they distract the guards without work. He and Abigail walk over to the swings and she pretends she’s drunk. The guards leave their post allowing Raelle to sneak inside. Adil knocks the guards out.

In Germany, Alder says they’ll need to facilitate a transfer, it’s how witches pass down the song. She’s never done it before but has an idea. Alder opens the music box that contains a song from the witch’s family. The witch opens her eyes and smashes her hand through ice grabbing Tally’s head. She speaks through Tally, “Who are you?” Alder tells her the mission, and says “we have to do our part.” “Where were you when they hunted me down?” she asks. Offended that Alder wants to take from her, tightens her grip on Tally, “I’ll take from you!” Tally starts to freeze.

Scylla (Amalia Holm) is chained up in the auditorium. A Civilian Oversight Committee guard comes in and taunts her then starts throwing rocks. One wizzes by her head, but she’s not fazed. At the back of the auditorium a voice gives the command to unlock her. It’s Raelle. As she approaches, the guard says she can’t do work, they’ve locked wind and whispers in this place. What about the Witch Bomb? She and Scylla explain what the which bomb does and he seems rattled. “Hey, I just work here.” He unlocks Scylla and she hits him with a rock, then Raelle kicks him for good measure. They kiss and enjoy the little moment before an alarm sounds. They run and catch up with Abigail and Adil as guards chase them.

The old witch won’t let go of Tally, or listen to Alder. Alder looks around the cave and grabs a sword out of the ice. She chops off the witch’s arm. “Did you get the song?” Tally asks. “You’re not leaving without it.”

An Army unit chases after the group as a commander yells “apprend the fugitives!” The group keeps running while the Army advances. As they disappear into fog, the troops stop. The fog clears to reveal Thelma and her militia. She has nothing against the Army, but won’t let them cross the line. The Troops fall back, but the Civilian Oversight Committee orders them forward even though they’re outnumbered. When they refuse, the commander hisses, tossing troops into the air. Everyone watches in horror.

At Fort Salem, Petra is at her desk musing aloud to herself, “They’re killing my soldiers, what have I done?” Colonel Jarrett adds his take, “nothing, as we expected.” She says her hands have been tied since Silver took the Oath of Office. Jarrett suggests that she’s been biding her time waiting for someone to untie them. She brings up the Oath again and how it reminds her of the pledge she made. She starts to recite it while rhythmic tapping her pen on her desk. Jarrett’s heart starts to beat erratically; his left hand seizes; his face turns purple, his eyes bloodshot. She stops tapping, and he falls over. Dead.

Three remaining soldiers turn to face their commanders. Lupe uses work on a telephone pole and the wires snap to the ground electrocuting some of the guards. The commander hisses back and takes out the soldiers. Unable to take it anymore, Abigail crosses the line and creates a storm, calling down shards of hail to take out the Camarilla. They run to Lupe who’s still alive, but Raelle can’t save her.

In the cave Tally says she could see the witch’s memories full of pain and loneliness. She suggests trading her sight for the witch’s song, so she could have something to see? Alder tells her that’s a great sacrifice. Tally touches the ice and they complete the trade. All around them the ice in the cave starts cracking, opening a hole in the ground. Alder said she promised to protect the stewards and now Tally’s a steward. She pushes the young witch across the hole right before the collapse.

President Silver is back at Fort Salem and sees Petra dressed in combat uniform and asks where she’s going. She tells him the Cession. He asks about Colonel Jarrett. Just then Jarret emerges from the other room where he was  packing his bags. Silver pulls him aside, “She’s planning something; keep her in line.” Once Silver leaves the room Jarrett changes his face to reveal Sterling Woodlot (Luc Roderique)!

Ana is driving when sees a blue balloon hovering on the side of the road. She gets out of the car and Nicte and crew come out to meet her. Nicte says the Marshal tracked her down when she didn’t want to be found. She hisses at the balloon which pops and her army of birds take to the skies. “If they’re in the Cession we can track them down and then we can talk about my pardon.” Ana smiles.

Tally wakes up back in the Cession. “How did I get here?” The girls tell her she appeared in the garden days ago and couldn’t tell them anything. As her head clears she says she got the song, the cave collapsed, and Alder didn’t make it. They’re down one steward. Abigail cooly says they should turn themselves in. Yes they’ll be tried and likely executed, but hiding out has only caused pain, suffering and bloodshed. She says the Cession took care of them, they should return the favor. Scylla’s with them, she says she’s not leaving Raelle. They’re all in agreement. They started this together, they’ll end it together.

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Ashley Nicole Williams, Taylor Hickson, Jessica Sutton

(Freeform/Jeff Petry) Ashley Nicole Williams, Taylor Hickson, Jessica Sutton

Petra and several news crews are positioned at the Cession border. Thelma asks the girls one last time if they want to go through with it. Abigail says yes. As the Bellwether Unit lines up, Abigail asks if Tally’s sight is really gone. She confirms and adds she’s not sure she wants to see what happens next. Abigail turns to Adil and tells him no jailbreaks; he needs to find Khalida. He agrees and tells her to come back to them.

Realle tells Scylla that she knew coming back from the Mother she’d be mortal, but she’s not afraid because Scylla is by her side. Scylla just wishes they had more time. Raelle grabs her hands, “if we get out of this, when we get out of this, will you marry me?” Scylla says yes!

The quartet grabs hands and walks forward to surrender together. The Cession line clears to let them through. Fighting for composure, Petra goes to meet them and Abigail nods at her mother. “We’ve apprehended the fugitives,” Petra calls out. She orders the Army to stand down. “This occupation is over.”  

Motherland: Fort Salem airs on Freeform Tuesdays at 10pm ET/PT and next day on Hulu.

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