Our heroes, Tic, Leti, and Uncle George, wake up to the song Moving On Up (yes the theme The Jeffersons television show). Leti finds a closet filled with beautiful clothes that fit her perfectly. Uncle George finds a library filled with all his favorite books. Tic wakes up frightened remembering everything from the night before, unlike his companions.
When an alarm sounds, we find all of our heroes in the hallway updating one another on their rooms. We are then introduced to William, a friend of Christina Braithwhite, the woman driving the silver car. He gives our heroes a tour of the home and a bit of the history, admitting that Titus Braithwhite was very generous to those who “worked” for him. While outside at lunch, our heroes state that they would like to explore the village there, and William states of course that is fine, just please be back for dinner. As he says this, his face and body language speak of unease, which allows further foreboding to creep in. Our heroes realize they are much more prisoners than they had originally thought.
During lunch, we discover Leti and Uncle George have no memory of the previous night involving the Shoggoth’s fight and crashing Woody. They remembered nothing. Tic is confused about how one could forget what they endured, but Uncle George notices and informs the group they are being watched. He instructs that this a discussion to be tabled for later since “they been treating us very fine and we don’t want to give them any reason no to.” They finish lunch and head to the garage where they find a perfectly not crashed Woody. Sure, the back window is still blown out, but Woody does not appear to have been crashed into a cabin. William appears seemingly out of nowhere and does his calm best to reassure Tic that he found Woody on the other side of the bridge just like this. However, when pressed, William admits he had the butler wash out all the blood from the front seat.
Our heroes head into town, which is very off grid and colonial (it even boasts a wicker man or rather wicker woman). Tic suddenly hears the whistle that called the Shoggoth’s off the previous night. This leads to a rather racist encounter with the female groundskeeper, but we finally learn where Monstrose is most likely being kept captive.
While our heroes are walking through the forest back to the Lodge from the village, night arrives and with it so do the monsters. Quickly, our groundskeeper and Christina whistle, calling the monsters off, and Leti quickly realizes the she and Uncle George have forgotten that they saw the monsters again.
Christina alerts the groundskeeper to escort Leti and Uncle George to their rooms while she takes Tic to her father’s laboratory. Tic walks in to see Samuel Braithwhite, Christina’s father, screaming as a man cloaked in black remove his inner flesh. Once stitched up Samuel states that, “He is darker than I thought he’d be” in reference to Tic skin color. Samuel then asks if Tic knows Genesis 2:19, and we have it quoted for us by a bored Christina. She finishes by saying, “I”m sure we all are smart, and know the Bible isn’t to be taken literally?” Christina then calls Eve a whore, and Samuel states he is Adam, and he has waited long enough to reenter paradise.
Tic returns to his room, and the Lodge members arrive for an evening of dinner and entertainment. Our heroes are stuck in their rooms while Lodge members gather in a gallery to enjoy their torment through what look like museum diorama displays. Leti is comforted by an illusion of Tic.They go from connecting as any couple learning about each other does to Tic reassuring her that he will never leave Leti as her mother did to run around with strange men. They kiss and begin to make out, but once things turn to sex, Leti asks Tic to slow down.Tic, however, unfastens his pants and out comes a snake to attack. Meanwhile, Tic is reliving multiple traumas from war in Korea. His visions are violent, but the random solider he fights takes on the face of a woman who Tic knows and whom we will meet later on. Meanwhile, Uncle George is deciphering a message that the real Tic is tapping out to him in morse code through the wall—the word “Wizards”—when he suddenly hears Tic fighting in his room and goes to investigate. Instead of Tic, he finds Dora, Tic’s mother and his childhood neighbor, in his room. They dance and talk about their childhood in Tulsa, OK before she mentions how they used to drink soda pop and play the what if game. What if you could go anywhere in the world? What if you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life? What if magic was real? Montrose wanted super strength, a power that we learn later it is probably to protect himself from a very abusive father. George wanted to fly, which I believe is very telling as a young child watching your father beat your little brother. Their powers are undoubtedly linked to their shared though different fear of their father. Illusion Dora then tells George that he could fly with both his children. We then learn that Tic could possibly be George’s son and not his brother Montrose’s who Tic has grown up to believe is his father. Uncle George then tells Dora she isn’t real.
As the illusions end, our heroes all meet in an empty corridor, visibly shaken by what they have just experienced. With the pregame show now over, all the Lodge members, the Sons of Adam, have left for dinner. Uncle George tells Tic it doesn’t matter who he saw or what he did in war; he is a good boy, just as he always has been. No doubt he believes it but, also just having danced with Dora and hearing her reference Tic as his son has to have made an impact. Uncle George then brightens the mood some by joking that Letitia Fucking Lewis doesn’t get scared. He is the safe and loving father figure here holding his babies close, comforting them, protecting them from the monsters of the world and Lodge. Uncle George then mentions he may have found a way to release them from the prison of the Lodge and Ardham all together.
William appears and alerts them that dinner will begin in 15 minutes, black tie and male only. He suggests to Leti that she enjoy a beautiful dinner out on the balcony under the stars. Before William completely departs, for the only man present not attending the dinner, he tells Tic that just because the white men do not want him there, does not mean he does not belong there. Samuel greets his guests by telling them that as Adam gave up a rib for Eve, he has given up part of himself for them to consume. As a Roman Catholic, this seems less Adam and more Jesus Christ to me, but Samuel told Tic in the laboratory that he was Adam, so let’s go with that. Uncle George lets Samuel and everyone know they don’t want to be at dinner sitting alone with Tic; they are the only colored men in the room.Uncle George read the by-laws and at dinner that tell everyone how Tic is a “son among sons” and orders everyone to leave. As a darker black man, ordering a bunch of racist white men to do something is quite a powerful to do.
Our heroes race to go to break out Montrose, but since The Count of Monte Cristo is Montrose’s favorite book, they realize he built a tunnel and got himself out. They find Montrose bursting out of the ground. When Tic and Uncle George try to explain why they are there, Montrose argues about them being in danger and that they are in just to save him, stating that he and Tic haven’t spoken in five years. This is interesting, because when our heroes were outside of Leti’s brother Marvin’s home, Uncle George mentioned that while Montrose did not reach out to his son, he would come to George’s home and not leave until George mentioned news about Tic. Uncle George tells his brother that he doesn’t need to speak to Tic that way and Montrose aggressively tells his brother, “Don’t tell me how to speak to my son.” Clearly George’s hallucinations with Tic’s mother earlier in the Lodge have awoken some painful truths.
While in Christina’s car trying to leave the Lodge, our heroes hit a barrier on a covered bridge, and Samuel appears, immediately shooting Leti. He asks Tic to pick who to save, and instead simply shoots Uncle George, fatally wounding him. Tic asks Christina for help after the car accident, and Christina looks away with possible tears in her eyes and regret all over her face. This will be discussed further in a future essay on Leti’s invincibility. For now we know that Samuel Braithwhite, has resurrected Leti, as he claimed he would as long as Tic promises to go through the ritual to open the gate to Eden. Samuel is using a wounded Uncle George and Leti as leverage against Tic. Sure many of us would have prefer Samuel had shot Montrose but he didn’t. I understand why, because as we discover later, Montrose is a fascinating character.
Did any of you notice how the other Lodge members’ cloaks were very Klan-ish with the pointy hoods and the eyes cut out of the face coverings? You did! Fantastic! Good to know it was not just me! Unlike the Klan though, the Son’s of Adam wear black robes like Priests, which is an interring dichotomy of what the Lodge members think of themselves. As Samuel starts the spell and ritual to open a portal to create a new Eden using Tic’s relation to Titus Braithwhite, Tic sees in the spell his other ancestor Hanna who fled the first fire Titus started and who was the sole survivor. Tic channels Hanna and resists the spell. When the first fire destroyed the Lodge, Hanna ran out of the first door, and as the second fire breaks out and the Lodge collapses around them, our heroes flee, and most importantly, Tic follows Hanna out the front door.
We end the episode with the song River by Leon Bridges, which you should definitely listen to. Leti grabs Tic first after seeing Hanna running out the front door. Tic reads in Leti’s eyes that Uncle George isn’t well. He makes it to Woody, crying and telling Uncle George that he is sorry, and then reaching back for Leti, who is also crying. Montrose, no matter their earlier fight, sits behind his brother with a true look of shell shock on his face, tears streaming down his face in an almost comatose state. We see once again how strong love is no matter disagreements.