In the south of England, Sir Fury writes a letter to the Queen, explaining the developments in his situation. He has already dispatched a fine agent to the continent to seek the Old Man and the Treasure of the Templars, while Fury has instructed young Peter Parquagh to lead Virginia Dare to Elizabeth’s court. Fury tells the Queen that it is imperative that he speak with Carlos Javier, whose establishment has been discussed many times.
Fury rides to the doors of Carlos’ academy, finding the engraved Latin phrase “Omnia mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis,” which means “All things change, and we change with them.”
Fury is greeted by a crouching man with wild hair, and exceptionally large feet and hands. Fury asks what sort of creature this could be. The squat man replies that he was asked that very question many times as a youth. The townsfolk would ask if he were man or beast, and accusations would be thrown about, wondering if his mother had courted an ape. The beast-man continues to tell Sir Fury that while others would stone him and mock his appearance, he soon found himself to be stronger, faster, and smarter than them all. Fury laughs that he is a creature of few words, then. The beast tells Fury that he is famed for speaking only when words are called for, and otherwise is as silent as the grave. Sir Nicholas stops him, telling him not to speak of graves today. The beast leaves to fetch his master.
Fury lights his pipe, but before he can enjoy it, the beast returns with his master Javier, who begs Fury to put the pipe out. Fury jokes that the last person to order him to put his pipe out was King James of Scotland – and it is odd that he and Carlos would agree on something. Carlos asks what care James would have over a small college for the sons of Gentlefolk. Fury turns gravely serious, saying that the Inquisition is on his trail, and while they hate James, they hate Carlos more. Fury understands that Javier has stolen a new pupil from the Spanish recently. Javier asks how he could know – but of course Sir Nicholas Fury is the head of Her Majesty’s intelligence, and a butterfly could not land without his knowledge. Fury warns Carlos that Elizabeth will soon be dead, and James will be King - and if there’s one thing James hates more than tobacco, it is witches. Carlos explains that there is no magic in what they do, and asks Fury to carry him to the garden.
Outside, Fury carries the old man to see his pupils in training. Javier says that he dreams of a room in which dangers would appear from nowhere, in order to train his pupils to behave as a team. He introduces them. The first boy, a youth with brown hair, is Roberto, who knows much about ice. The second, wearing a crown of rubies around his eyes, is Scotius, who has no love for James. The beast he had met earlier is McCoy, while the lad with wings is named Werner. The fifth, a very pale character, is his young page master Grey. Carlos invites Fury to watch them fight.
London, Bleeding Heart Inn:
Rojhas stands guard outside Virginia Dare’s room. Peter walks up to him and asks if Virginia is there, but Rojhas does not reply. As Peter moves to knock on the door, Rojhas grabs the boy’s arm and picks him up menacingly, as Virginia answers the door. Peter says that he was sent by the Queen. Virginia begs Rojhas to put Peter down, and apologizes for the actions of her blond Indian bodyguard. Virginia explains that Rojhas is the protector of the Roanoke colony, and her personal bodyguard. Peter says that he is to bring Virginia to Hampton Court, where the Queen will receive her. Rojhas says that he will join them as well. Peter says that he wasn’t told to bring anyone else. Rojhas picks the boy up and glares at him menacingly. Peter, scared, says that the Queen would hate to see Virginia parted from her bodyguard, and Rojhas drops him. They leave for the Court.
Matthew, the bard, continues his journey across Europe, singing another verse from the “Ballad of the Fantastick.” He hears and smells a familiar woman approaching, but doesn’t let her know this. The woman, garbed in black, offers a penny for Matthew to stop singing. Matthew asks if that is really Natasha. Matthew asks if the carriage is prepared, as per Fury’s request. Natasha says that everything is as it was planned – a change of horses every two hundred miles, and a new driver waiting with the horses. Matthew says that Natasha will be paid upon reaching their destination. Natasha unveils their disguise – Matthew is to pretend he is dying, her husband, who is being rushed home. The devil asks what Natasha looks like. Natasha gives permission for him to touch her face. She asks if Matthew was born blind. Matthew remembers the story of his youth, when he could see as well as any eagle. He was afraid of nothing, always exploring and getting into trouble. He came across a cavern, which glowed green with a mysterious ooze that he had never seen before. The boy tasted it, and soon found the cavern in darkness. He kept walking, soon finding himself outside, by the crunching of pebbles beneath his feet, and the cry of the gulls. His mother found him much later, muttering about darkness and the night – a night which would never end. Matthew does not tell Natasha any of this.
He asks why Natasha works for England, though she owes the Crown no allegiance. She says that she needs to keep busy after the death of her husband, and England’s money is always good. She knits a spider’s web in her lap.
The High Castle, Latveria:
The regent of Latveria looks upon a map of Europe, while several of his diminutive aides watch intently. He says that Fury’s men are now heading south, and estimates their position, in the north of France. An adviser asks if an ambush is called for. The green-robed regent says no – that they have already ambushed three decoys. He orders a group of men do follow, half a day’s journey behind. One of the carriages must have the treasure – or weapon – of the Templars. He speaks of a foursome that learned, at great cost, that the worlds treasures and greatest weapons belong to one man, and that is he – Count Otto von Doom.
The Court of King James VI of Scotland:
King James tells his advisor, Bruce Banner, that he had a dream – that the earthquakes and fearsome weather were the result of the anger of God, caused because they suffer witches to live among them. Bruce says that the Inquisitor’s man has returned, and wishes to speak with James.
The boy, Petros, arrives, and says that he has relayed James’ message to the Inquisitor and has a response. James asks how the hell could he have returned from Spain after only a few days. Petros replies that he ran very fast. James laughs, thinking it a fine joke. James asks for the Inquisitor’s response. Petros says that the Inquisitor accepts the terms – that once James becomes King, he will have England crying for the heads of witches, and begging for James to burn them. He says that in return, James is to deliver Carlos Javier and his band of witches to them personally, and they are not to be harmed, except by the Inquisitor. James tells Petros that if his dreams are true, then Elizabeth must die soon. If Providence were to consume the Isles before he could become King, that would be a bad thing. Petros asks if he understands correctly – that James believes that the Queen has lived too long. James replies that that would be a dreadful thing to say – but yes, she is an old woman, and the sooner she could die, the friendlier he would be to Petros’ master. James asks for the boy to stay and drink some wine with him. Petros declines, saying that he needs to run fast to speak with the Inquisitor.
Peter, Virginia, and Rojhas are traveling by boat toward Hampton court. Virginia says that the people called her the Luck of the Colony, but that title should rightfully go to Rojhas. When Roanoke was founded, the people were starving to death, but Rojhas found them and hunted wild game for them, keeping them all alive. Peter asks what Virginia’s mother thought of her coming to England, but Virginia’s mother had been dead for some time. Virginia asks about Peter’s parents, and how they felt upon learning that Peter was joining the Queen’s service. Peter says that his mother and father are dead, and that he was raised by his aunt and uncle. Sir Fury came to his house on his last birthday, saying that he had known Peter’s parents, and that the time had come for Peter to join Fury’s service. Peter said that his Uncle Benjamin was proud of him, but that his aunt cried and bade him to write and return as soon as possible. Virginia asks what Peter does for Sir Nicholas, and Peter responds that he does as he’s told. Virginia asks if Peter likes this arrangement, but Peter does not answer. Instead, Peter tells Virginia that he would like to make things. He once watched a drop of dew fall in a spider’s web, and saw how it magnified the grass behind it. He wondered if he ground some glass to the shape of a dewdrop, if it could help people. Virginia says that he should go to the New World, where they need such people.
Greenwich, The House of Doctor Strange:
Mistress Clea gazes out the window as her husband, Stephen Strange, plans his evening. He says that he shall require a fishing net, as well as a black candle, a red candle, and chalk. Clea wonders where her husband could be going – Stephen replies that he is going to the palace. When Clea asks why, Strange freezes and says that he has no idea.
Dom Daniel, Spain:
As the sun sets, the Grand Inquisitor dictates a letter to Sister Wanda, one of his followers. The letter explains, to the Inquisitors, that none must be obstructed and confused by the Devil’s powers, and that they must seek out and burn the witchbreed among them. Wanda asks the Inquisitor if the powers that she and her brother have are caused by the Devil, and not gifts from God. The Inquisitor replies angrily that it is because she and her brother work for him – and as long as they continue to do so without question, the Inquisition will not turn a finger on them. He is disappointed that her brother has not returned yet. Wanda bids him to wait longer, as she is sure that Petros is running as fast as he can. Sure enough, on the horizon, waves are rippling outward, and Petors arrives on the beach after crossing the water. He is panting, exhausted.
Sir Fury marvels at the pupils of Carlos Javier. However, Fury asserts that if he was to report to the Queen that Javier was training an army of witches, it would mean their heads. Javier insists that he is loyal to the Queen. Fury laughs that if Javier believes that, he is fooling himself. Master Grey approaches, and tells Javier that Fury is right – his loyalty is not to the Queen, or to England – but to the witchbreed. Javier compliments Fury again on his knowledge. Fury shows Javier a sketch of an attempted assassin, the one which attacked him and Peter several days ago. He also hands him a glove and says that the man is imprisoned within the Tower, and asks if Javier can give him any information. Javier closes his eyes and focuses on the Tower, and tells Fury that the assassin was one of a group of three, though he doesn’t know who they are working for. The second killer is in London for the girl from the New World, while the third is here to kill the Queen.
Rojhas and Virginia prepare to meet the Queen, but they are held up by guards, as they are demanding that the savage leave his knives and arrows behind before he sees the Queen. Rojhas struggles, but Virginia insists that it will be alright. Peter introduces them to the Queen.
Elizabeth thanks Virginia for bringing with her a day of fine weather, and Virginia presents Her Majesty with a gift – a map of the New World. The Queen stares at the large Indian bodyguard, asking if he dances like the other Indians. She says that all the Indians who visited the court before have impressed the monarch with dance and song, but died shortly after of disease. Rojhas says that he protects Virginia. The Queen, disappointed, tells Rojhas to step back.
Before any more conversation is had, however, an assassin dives out of the air, using his green wings to swoop below and grab Virginia. Before he can get to the roof, Rojhas, thinking quickly, grabs a dinner tray and hurls it with pinpoint accuracy at the vulture, causing him to fall. However, Virginia is no longer with him. Rojhas looks at the would-be killer, seeing that his face has been torn into by claws like an eagle’s. Peter asks where Virginia could have gone.
Above the palace, a white gryphon perches, frightened by the ordeal.