Oh my! Before I get to my favorite scene from Episode 303, All Debts Paid, I just gotta say…did we have some big surprises in this episode or what? Biggest for me – Murtagh is alive!
At least he is for the time being anyway. I can’t wait to see what they do with his character going forward! Second surprise, Frank DID cheat – as the series writers saw it – and that’s the way I had always interpreted it in the book – right or wrong. I know Diana is still leaving that somewhat up in the air and she can do that…she wrote the books!
Another big surprise for me, and maybe not so much for you, was how much I really liked Lord John Grey. I know a lot of people love his character in the books; however, he just hasn’t been one of my favorites and I didn’t expect to like him in the show. I’m very protective when it comes to Claire and Jamie’s relationship and anyone who might want to tinker with that is not high on my list. However, I have to say that David Berry brought a real compassion and loveability to Lord John that I failed to see in the books.
In large part due to Berry’s interpretation and portrayal of his character, I see more clearly that Lord John is a man of compassion, integrity and honor. He is someone I can see Jamie really coming to like and even admire as a soldier, a man and a friend. Actually, they have a lot of attributes in common. I love the books but sometimes the show helps me to see things from a different perspective and I love that! I can read the books and be perfectly happy and I can watch the show and be perfectly happy but I thought this episode was a wonderful compliment to the book and vice versa. Speaking of this episode and before I ramble on any further, I have to get on with my favorite scene of Episode 303, All Debts Paid. But before I give it away, I want to let you know that my pick for this episode is very personal and something I’d like to share with you from my heart.
My oldest sister has suffered from Alzheimer’s for about 15 years and has been in a nursing home for about the last ten of those. This past Monday morning at 2 a.m., she passed peacefully away in her sleep. It’s been a very rough week for my other sister and me as we have dealt with her passing and all that goes along with it – notifying relatives, going to the funeral home to discuss and decide on arrangements, picking out her final clothing ensemble, talking to the florist, meeting with the minister to discuss the service, and then the funeral service itself. But the hardest thing was the first viewing of her body at the funeral home. It took my breath away. There she was lying in the coffin, looking more beautiful and alive in death than she had looked in her final years of life. All the suffering was gone from her face. The struggle was over. When I looked at her, I saw the sister I had known since infancy, since early childhood and beyond, who had in many ways been a mother figure to me because she was 22 years my senior. There she was – the person I remembered. Not the shell of the person she had become at the hands of a savage disease.
When Claire walked into the morgue to see Frank for the first time after his accident and resulting death, she saw the Frank she had known and loved when they had married.
Her first love, as she put it. She didn’t see the man who thought she had lost her mind twenty years before or the man who resented her undying love for Jamie or the man who cheated on her (or didn’t?) nor did she see the man who had threatened to take Brianna away from her.
No, when Claire looked at Frank on that table, she saw the man she had met, loved and married. The struggle for Frank was over. The torment he had endured and the betrayal and bitterness he had felt ever since Claire had come back to him twenty years before was no more. And, there he was – the person Claire remembered.
One last comparison and the most important one, if you will allow me. When I stood by my sister’s coffin looking at her, I thought about the things I wish I had been able to do for and say to her before she died. I wish I had visited her on Saturday as I had first planned instead of waiting until Monday morning when it was six hours too late. I wish I had been able to tell her one more time that I loved her and say it repeatedly until she came out of the dark abyss to say it back to me as was the routine between us when I visited her. But regrets and good intentions cannot undo what has not been done.
It was the same for Claire. Things put off or left undone. Words of love left unspoken. We know that Frank could never replace Jamie as Claire’s true love but Frank was her first love and she did love him very much. She didn’t speak those words to him after her return through the stones and when she saw him lying there, more peaceful in death than in life, she knew too late the things she might have spoken and the things she could have, and perhaps might have done differently. Claire then speaks the words of love to Frank if he is close enough to hear which she wished she had spoken before but was too late.
As Claire walks out the door, she starts a new chapter of her life without Frank.
I, too, now start a new chapter without my sister. Like Claire, I don’t know what that next chapter holds but I do know that it will be filled with more words and actions of love. I will not wait or put off or make excuses because life can change in a heartbeat and in a heartbeat it can be too late.
What was your favorite scene of Episode 303, All Debts Paid? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below! In the meantime, Dear Readers, I want you to know how much I love and appreciate each and every one of you! Now, do me and yourself a favor, go tell someone you love them! You may not get another chance!
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