DISCLAIMER: This The Witcher recap contains more SPOILERS than wishes granted by a djinn. Continue reading with caution: you have been warned!
A man (Callum Coates) bottles and pickles various body parts, as he stares at his own body in a mirror. The Black Knight (Eamon Farren) arrives and tells the man he knows who he is…or rather, *what* he is. The man is a doppler: a shapeshifter able to take on the form of any humanoid or animal. Most dopplers are generous and helpful, but this one gathers body parts to create a more “artful” appearance. The Black Knight offers both coin and “another eye or ear”.
Later, Fringilla Vigo (Mimi Ndiweni) and Mousesack (Adam Levy) arrive at the town. Mousesack tries to appeal to Fringilla, saying this isn’t who she is. Fringilla states that the “White Flame” made her who she is and gave her a purpose. The Black Knight then brings the doppler, who transforms into a duplicate of Mousesack. Dopplers copy not only appearance, but also thoughts and memories…allowing the doppler to perfectly impersonate the druid. Mousesack insists that the Black Knight can’t change the world like this, and he doesn’t understand what Ciri is. The Black Knight says that Ciri will end up where she belongs. The Black Knight insists that the doppler bring Ciri alive, to which the doppler insists that he be paid extra…and reminds the Black Knight that children are his favorite.
In another town, Yennefer of Vengerburg (Anya Chalotra) purchases spell ingredients from a local mage named Hemet (Philippe Spall). What Hemet enjoys as not being bound by the Brotherhood’s rules, Yennefer calls “living off the grid with no resources”. Hemet offers to take on Yennefer as an apprentice. Word-of-mouth is paramount for town wizards or witches, but Yennefer is confident in her ability to get the word out.
In the Redanian village of Rinde, Yennefer has set herself up as the local witch for “correctives most effective, whatever the objective”. After one such “corrective”, Yennefer is interrupted by Beau Berrant (Roger Ringrose) and his guard. Beau is the mayor of Rinde, and hostile to mages. Claiming to collect taxes for the casting of spells, Beau attempts to shake down Yennefer’s business. Yennefer refuses and is arrested without protest.
In Brokilon Forest, the dryads discuss in Elder what to do with Ciri. The dryad general (Nóra Trokán) doesn’t trust Ciri for hiding her identity and ties to Cintra. Queen Eithne (Josette Simon) points out that Ciri is scared and doesn’t trust anyone. The general is concerned that Ciri was able to hide her intent from Shan-Kayan, and she has the “power of a weapon”. Queen Eithne is confident that Ciri can hone her powers in Brokilon, though the general states Ciri will never become a true dryad.
A dryad scout arrives with the heads of two Nilfgaardian spies. Eithne decides that Ciri (Freya Allan) is the dryads only hope of defeating the Nilfgaardian army, and allows her to stay…against the protests of the dryad general. Eithne tells Ciri that “the sword of destiny has two edges”, and Ciri can either stay or continue her search for Geralt.
Along a lake near Rinde, Jaskier (Joey Batey) runs into witcher Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill) fishing. Jaskier is mourning that the Countess de Stael has dumped him (again), and he asks what Geralt is fishing for? Geralt says he isn’t fishing: he can’t sleep. There is an amphora containing an illegal djinn (an air elemental) somewhere in the lake, and Geralt claims to want to use one of its three wishes to finally get some sleep. Jaskier accurately surmises that the root cause of Geralt’s sleeplessness is his “child of surprise” in Cintra and what Mousesack told Geralt about destiny. Geralt responds by insulting Jaskier’s singing, and manages to find an amphora with a wizard’s seal. His feelings hurt, Jaskier fights with Geralt over the amphora, causing Geralt to accidentally rip the seal off of the amphora.
At first, nothing happens…and then the breeze starts to stir. Jaskier immediately declares himself the djinn’s lord. For his first wish, Jaskier wishes that Valdo Marx (troubadour of Cidaris and Jaskier’s rival) be struck with apoplexy and die. For his second wish, Jaskier wishes that the Countess de Stael welcome Jaskier back with glee, open arms, and very little clothing. Geralt stops Jaskier and reminds the bard that there are only three wishes. Jaskier reminds Geralt that he always says he wants nothing from life. Geralt just wanted to wish for some damn peace and quiet, to which Jaskier smashes the amphora.
Suddenly, Jaskier begins wheezing. The two realize that the djinn has begun strangling the bard. Geralt manages to drive off the djinn with Aard, but Jaskier continues to wheeze and starts coughing blood. The djinn has done something to his throat and larynx, and Jaskier can barely speak. Geralt rides Jaskier to a nearby military encampment in Rinde, and he is directed to an elven healer named Chireadan (Lucas Englander). Chireadan realizes that Jaskier’s wounds are of a magical nature: Chireadan can help with the pain, but the spell’s damage needs to be halted as soon as possible. The longer Jaskier goes untreated, the more likely it is for the damage to spread and become irreversible. Chireadan’s medicine buys Jakier a few hours, but without a magical remedy, Jaskier will die.
When Geralt asks if there’s a mage in Rinde, Chireadan deflects by sharing that Rinde’s mayor says mages are dangerous. Geralt pressures the healer, who finally reveals that the mayor captured an “illegal” mage and imprisoned the mage in his house. Chireadan warns Geralt that this mage is very malicious, very powerful, and very cunning.
In her room within the mayor’s house in Rinde, Yennefer is contacted by Tissaia de Vries (MyAnna Buring). Tissaia informs Yennefer that since she left Aedirn’s court, King Virfuril has died and King Demavend III reigns now. Fringilla Vigo has thrived in Yennefer’s intended post in Nilfgaard: the rightful heir to Nilfgaard defeated the Usurper and Fringilla helped him restore peace to the south. Yennefer asks why Tissaia is here? Tissaia reveals that Yennefer has started to make noise, and that Yennefer is wasting time trying to correct her “problem”. Yennefer wants a cure so badly that it is making her sloppy. Tissaia says that Yennefer knew the cost of enchantment, but Yennefer counters that she didn’t know what it would end up meaning to her.
When Tissaia asks why Yennefer wants a baby so badly, Yennefer changes the subject. The Continent is vast: just because the Brotherhood doesn’t know of a cure doesn’t mean there isn’t one. Tissaia offers Yennefer a chance to redeem herself: in exchange for the Brotherhood forgiving Yennefer for abandoning Aedirn and stirring up trouble to find her cure, Yennefer will become a teacher at Aretuza. Yennefer would rather forget Aretuza, and claims that Tissaia only wants Yennefer to succeed when Tissaia can claim credit for it. Tissaia tells Yennefer that she gave Yennefer all that Tissaia could give…what more could Yennefer possibly want? “Everything,” Yennefer curtly replies. Her feelings clearly hurt, Tissaia departs.
At the mayor’s house in Rinde, Geralt arrives. The mayor’s guard tells Geralt that no visitors are to be allowed tonight…but suggests that Geralt could offer a bribe. Geralt responds by knocking out the guard with his coin purse. When Geralt and Jaskier enter the house, they find Beau drunk and naked in the kitchen, muttering that “she” wanted apple juice. He then passes out, so Geralt takes Jaskier and the apple juice into the next room.
There, the pair find dozens of people in a slow, seductive orgy. Dropping off Jaskier with a couple of the women, Geralt walks up to a masked woman in a black dress. Geralt says he brought her apple juice, and the mage realizes that Geralt is immune to her spell. She introduces herself as Yennefer of Vengerburg. Geralt is clearly amazed by Yennefer’s beauty, but states that Jaskier needs her help. Yennefer realizes that Geralt is a mutant, to which Geralt introduces himself. The two almost immediately begin flirting with each other. When Geralt mentions a djinn and shows her the wizard’s seal, Yennefer agrees to help and ends the orgy.
Yennefer puts Jaskier into a deep healing sleep, and then has Geralt bathe. Yennefer enters the bath, and the two discuss their current situations and motivations. Yennefer claims that Geralt’s company and conversation to be suitable enough payment. In Yennefer’s room, Geralt sees that Yennefer has copied the wizard’s seal and seeks to draw the djinn to her. Yennefer plans to use Jaskier as bait, since the djinn is tied to whatever plane its master resides on. Geralt warns Yennefer that a djinn will fight back to avoid being captured again. Geralt tries to take Jaskier and leave, but then he realizes that under Yennefer’s perfume (lilac and gooseberries) is another scent.
Geralt passes out, and awakes alongside Chireadan in a Rinde jail. Apparently, Geralt went on a rampage when Yennefer had the ensorcelled witcher punish all her political enemies in Rinde. Two of Geralt’s “victims” were on the town council, who are demanding Geralt be executed. Chireadan wishes that he had better prepared Geralt for Yennefer, and reveals that Chireadan is in love with Yennefer.
At the mayor’s house, Yennefer draws an amphora on her chest. Jaskier wakes up and attempts to leave. Yennefer uses her magic to force Jaskier to use his third and final wish. At the same time, Geralt is beat up in the jail by Beau’s guard. The guard asks if Geralt has any last requests, so the witcher goads the guard by saying he wishes the guard’s head would burst…which it does. Geralt and Chireadan realize that *Geralt* is the djinn’s master, not Jaskier. The spell on Jaskier’s throat had been from Geralt’s first wish, and now Geralt has only one wish left.
Forced by Yennefer, Jaskier wishes that he would leave the mayor’s house forever. Yennefer then begins chanting in Elder. Jaskier flees the house as Yennefer begins fighting with the djinn. Geralt arrives and learns from Jaskier that Yennefer is attempting to become the new vessel for the djinn. Doing so would make Yennefer more powerful, but it would more likely kill her. Despite the protests of Jaskier to abandon the “Very sexy but insane witch”, Geralt barges back into the house.
Yennefer is losing the fight: the djinn hasn’t been weakened by Yennefer’s ritual. Geralt reveals it is because he is the djinn’s true master. Yennefer urges Geralt use his last wish, but Geralt refuses unless Yennefer releases the djinn. Yennefer accuses Geralt of only permitting her success as long as he can command it. She continues to fight the djinn, even as the room fractures around her. The djinn then possesses Yennefer and demands Geralt’s last wish. Geralt can wish for anything he wants: immortality, riches, fame, power, and even not to be a witcher. Geralt whispers his last wish, and the djinn departs Yennefer.
The room begins to collapse, so Yennefer teleports her and Geralt just before the roof falls. Yennefer accuses Geralt of stopping her and now the djinn will wreak havoc upon the world. Geralt states that a djinn is only a dark creature when held captive. Yennefer asks Geralt how he could be so sure, to which Geralt asks when was the last time Yenenfer felt happy when she was trapped? The two continue to accuse each other of messing up…and then suddenly begin making frantic, passionate love. A stunned Jaskier and a heartbroken Chireadan watch the scene unfold from a nearby window.
In Brokilon, the dryads defend the forest from an incoming intruder. The doppler, disguised as Mousesack, arrives and Ciri embraces him. Ciri has chosen to stay in Brokilon, but the doppler reminds them all that it was Calanthe’s dying wish that Ciri go to Geralt of Rivia. Ciri decides that Geralt is “the other edge of destiny” and decides to leave, so she can find answers. Queen Eithne advises Ciri to be vigilant and to “ask the right questions”. Dara (Wilson Radjou-Pujalte) doesn’t want to leave, but Ciri makes him come, as he is her family too.
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