Sorry I'm so late with the recap for last week's episode "A Better Man!" No time to waste so let's start in France. Catherine learns that Leesa has gone behind her back and arranged for Prince Henri's return to France. Leesa has informed Henri of her intention to remove Charles from the throne for Henri to rule. As Henri heads back to France, Catherine and Narcisse learn that Protestants are holding a group of Catholics hostage demanding that Protestants currently imprisoned be released. Catherine sees this as the chance to show Leesa and Catholics that King Charles is a defender of the faith, if he will take swift and strong military action to free the Catholics. Unfortunately, for that to happen they know that they will need Nicole to use her influence Charles which also means that Narcisse must use Lola's death to convince Nicole that he cares for her but can't fall for her because he feels he's betraying Lola. The seduction works and Charles orders troops to free the hostages. It's a little too late though because Prince Henri is home and he doesn't care that Charles is doing fine - Henri wants to be King.
In Scotland, Mary is moving forward with her plans to take England and she needs her husband's help. She has invited Lord Hamilton to court. Hamilton is a powerful Protestant who has a claim to the throne. Hamilton also wanted to wed our Queen when she was looking for a suitor. So, Hamilton comes to court and Mary must convince him to support she and Darnley and their England campaign. If she can, it will strengthen her reign and unite the two faiths in Scotland. The problem with the plan is that there is bad blood between Darnley's family and Lord Hamilton's. It seems that years ago, Hamilton's family murdered Darnley's grandfather. Oh, and Hamilton is also good friends with John Knox. Mary convinces Darnley to "be the better man" and play nice.
Because Lord Hamilton and John Knox are friends, Mary asks James to find out if Hamilton is planning on doing any of Knox's dirty work while at court. She also tells James that she's pregnant. James is thrilled and tells Mary she'll be a wonderful mother.
As James heads off to investigate, he runs into Greer. She wonders if James feels the same for her as she does for him. He tells Greer that he does but that his life is crazy and complicated now and not the right time for romance. He walks away from Greer but turns back, kisses her and asks her to wait for him.
James meets with Emily who tells him that Knox knows about them. She also tells him that she knows he was just using her. But Emily does has information about Knox and Hamilton which she will share with James if he will arrange for her to get out of Scotland. James agrees and Emily tells him of the plot to kill Mary. James rushes home to tell Mary. The pair run into Hamilton and his men outside his chambers. Hamilton's men will not drop their weapons and James kills them all, including Hamilton. His last words are to James. He tells James that Knox had warned him that Mary might try to have him killed which is why his men would not drop their weapons. James and Mary realize that Emily's info was false and now it appears that Mary did indeed invite Hamilton to court to kill him.
This is a disaster for Mary! The Protestants will seek revenge for Hamilton's death. James and Mary see no way to avoid the backlash of Hamilton's death at court. Protestants will deman revenge and Mary can't see a way out. That's when James steps in offering to be the scapegoat. He will say it was his idea alone to murder the men. Mary will be forced to banish James from Scotland and she will be seen as innocent. It's a terrible idea and it breaks Mary's heart but it's the only solution. So, in a big public show, Mary strips James of his title and lands and banishes him from Scotland! Greer watches James as he leaves and is angry with Mary for not finding another solution.
In England, it's Elizabeth's birthday and there's a great party with an awesome cake! The romance between she and Gideon is going strong but they both know that it can't last. Elizabeth has to find a husband and there will be plenty of suitors at her party. But Elizabeth really only wants Gideon so much so that she wants to have a baby with him. Her plan would be that once she was pregnant, she'd quickly marry and no one would be the wiser. Gideon is not on board with the plan - at first! After meeting with and rejecting suitors, Elizabeth admits that she only wants Gideon. He tells her that he isn't like Dudley; he knows his place. He will not expect more from her than she is able to give. Sure didn't take him long to forget about Mary.
Reign returns tomorrow at 9:00 pm with episode 11, "Dead of Night." Don't miss it!