Alias Grace (2017) s01e03 Episode Script

Episode 3

1 He promised to marry me.
But now he's gone back on his promise and he would not even speak with me.
GRACE: Don't go to this doctor.
If you ever tell anything about this - I will deny ever having seen you.
- GRACE: Mary! MRS.
PARKINSON: We will not say how Mary died.
That will be best for all.
GRACE: I have no memory of anything I said or did during the time I was awake between the two long sleeps.
And this worried me.
My husband took all our money two days ago.
I do not know where he has gone.
Humphrey, can you hear me? VERRINGER: We are hoping you will write a report favorable of Grace Marks.
That is why we have brought you here.
Yes, I appreciate that.
(THEME MUSIC PLAYING) SIMON: I want to speak to you about an account I read of Grace at the asylum.
(SCREAMING) SIMON: It paints her as a gibbering madwoman (SHRIEKING) SIMON: Shrieking like a phantom (SCREAMING) And running around like a singed monkey.
Have you developed your own theories regarding her sanity? I have been proceeding with the utmost caution.
Have you asked her what she remembers? She remembers her life before arriving at Mr.
Kinnear's with a vividness and a mass of circumstantial detail that indicates the problem is not with her memory in general.
Are you acquainted with a family called Parkinson in Toronto? VERRINGER: He died some years ago and the widow returned to her native land.
She was an American like yourself.
She found the winters too cold.
SIMON: That is unfortunate.
Grace's first situation was with the Parkinson's.
She had a friend, a fellow servant, called Mary Whitney.
You may recall this was the false name she gave when escaping.
In any case, this young woman died under abrupt circumstances.
When Grace was sitting next to the body, she said she heard her dead friend speak to her.
- MARY: Let me in.
- SIMON: An auditory hallucination, of course.
VERRINGER: It is not at all uncommon.
I myself have attended a great many deathbeds and especially among the sentimental, it is counted a mark of dishonor not to have heard the deceased speak.
If an angel choir is also audible, so much the better.
This hallucination was followed by an episode of fainting and hysterics, mixed with what would appear to have been somnambulism.
After which, there was a prolonged sleep and subsequent amnesia.
So, she has a history of such lapses? We must not jump to conclusions.
She herself is, at present, my only informant.
It would be most useful to approach the time of the murders with her now, given that she is speaking about her amnesia.
I must reiterate.
My methods take time.
It is most crucial not to rush her.
HUMPHREY: I suppose it's still the shock.
So kind of you to make dinner again.
You're so much more caring than my husband ever was.
GRACE: - Rock of ages, cleft for me Let me hide myself in thee Let the water and the blood From thy riven side which flowed Be of sin the double cure Cleanse me from its guilt and power (HUMMING) (HUMMING STOPS) I did not know you could sing so well, Grace.
You have a beautiful voice.
GRACE: Thank you, sir.
I used to have more occasion for it than I do now.
Grace, I noticed that the guards were quite rough with you.
Does this happen often? Yes, sir.
They prod and poke at me.
They say filthy things and make it so I can't get free of them.
That is unjust.
I will speak to the Governor of the prison about it.
I wonder what has been causing your loss of sleep.
What makes you say that, Grace? You have dark circles under your eyes and it looks as though haven't slept a wink.
Oh, I slept well.
Thank you for your concern.
A parsnip.
Not one I would have selected.
It has an orange tint which means it is old.
Does it remind you of anything? There's, "Fine words butter no parsnips.
" It's also very hard to peel.
I believe they're kept in cellars.
Oh, no, sir.
Outside in a hole in the ground.
They are much improved by being frozen.
Shall we continue where we left off? I've forgotten just where that was, sir.
The death of Mary.
Your poor friend Mary Whitney.
She was buried in my best nightdress and she didn't look dead in the least, but only very pale.
And all laid out in white like that she looked just like a bride.
CHURCH MINISTER: In sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life through our Lord Jesus Christ, we commend to Almighty God our sister Mary, and we commit her body to the ground.
Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust.
The Lord lift up his countenance upon her and give her peace.
GRACE: She was put with the Methodists on Adelaide Street, off in a corner right next to the paupers, but still within the churchyard, so I felt I had done all for her that I could.
JEREMIAH: I saw death in Mary's eyes, but then, hindsight is always accurate.
I will say a prayer for her.
It was very hard for me to believe that Mary was truly dead.
Have a seat.
Come, come.
Do you know the man? Ma'am? The man.
I do not.
I'm going to ask you to swear on the Bible that even if you do know, you will never divulge it.
And if you can swear that on the Bible, I will make sure that your wages are increased immediately.
And that if you should choose to leave the house I will give you a good reference for future employment.
I never had fault to find with your work, Grace.
George Parkinson did not seem in any hurry to get back to the United States and his education.
Excuse me, Mother.
- Grace.
- (YELPS) (DISHES SHATTERING) So sorry about your friend Mary.
I know you were very dear to her.
Please be more careful.
Open the door.
It's George.
Let me in.
Grace, let me in! Open the door.
I knew that, lock or no lock, sooner or later he'd find a way of getting in.
Once you are found with a man in your room you are the guilty one, no matter how they get in.
As Mary used to say, there are some of the masters who think you owe them service 24 hours a day, and should do the main work flat on your back.
As I've said, sir, she had a very forward way of speaking.
(INDISTINCT CHATTER) Oh, Nancy, this is Grace.
Nancy's an old friend.
She is visiting from Richmond Hill.
Lovely to meet you, Grace.
I must be going.
I need to get to the dry goods auction before Clarkson's store closes.
Will you look at the pretty muslin I got last time? Now what would a housekeeper be wanting with a dress like that, Nancy? You always had such fine tastes.
Do you have a long road ahead of you to Richmond Hill? Oh, no, I did not take the coach into town.
My master drove me in.
Do you know where Richmond Hill is? Up Yonge Street past Hogg's Hollow.
I'm in want of another servant to help me with the work.
Kinnear, my master, is a gentleman of a fine Scottish family.
He's not married, so there is no mistress of the household to carp and criticize.
Would you be interested in the position? I am lonely for female company and I don't like being a single woman alone with a gentleman, as people will talk.
Oh, I'm not sure Mr.
Kinnear is a liberal master and he shows it when he's pleased.
You'll be making a good bargain and taking a step up in the world.
What are your wages at present? Two dollars a month.
I will pay you three dollars a month.
Well, that is more than fair.
Here is some money for you to take the coach to Richmond Hill tomorrow.
I myself will meet you by the inn where you will be let off.
COOK: Grace I'm sorry to steal your best help, Sally.
You just said such glowing things about my new girl.
Yet little did I know you would be taking her from us (GIGGLES) I'm not sure it is a suitable position for a young girl like you.
Why not? Nancy has always been kind to me and I don't like to talk.
A person has to take her own chances and the least said, the soonest mended.
I don't know anything for certain so it would not be right for me to say more, but I feel I've done my duty to you in saying as much as I have because you have no mother to advise you.
GRACE: And I didn't have the least idea of what she was talking about.
Have you heard any harm spoken of Mr.
Kinnear? Nothing the world at large would call harm.
GRACE: It was like a puzzle I could not guess and it would have been better for all if she had spoken more plainly.
But the pay was higher than anything I'd had before, which weighed heavily on me along with my need to get away from Mr.
George Parkinson.
And what weighed even more heavily on me was Nancy Montgomery herself.
She resembled Mary Whitney, or so I then thought.
And I'd been depressed in spirits ever since Mary's death.
And so I decided to go.
The journey up Yonge Street to Richmond Hill was more uncomfortable than I expected.
- Never look behind you.
- Why not? Because the past is the past and regret is vain.
Let bygones be bygones.
You know what became of Lot's wife Turned to a pillar of salt, she was.
Waste of a good woman.
(CHUCKLES) Not that they aren't all the better for a pinch of salt.
See that there? Montgomery's Tavern.
That's where Mackenzie and his band of ragtags held their seditious meetings and set out to march down Yonge Street during the rebellion.
William Lyon Mackenzie? One of them was shot in front of it trying to warn the Government troops, they burnt it down afterwards.
Some of the traitors were hung, but not enough.
That cowardly rascal Mackenzie should be dragged back from the States.
He ran off leaving his friends to swing at the rope's end for him.
GRACE: I could tell by the smell of his breath that it was just as well not to provoke him.
And so I said nothing.
William Lyon Mackenzie was a hero to Mary.
It was hard to say nothing.
Where are you staying? What you don't know won't hurt you.
Why don't you come in to the inn with me for a glass or two of whiskey, just for old times' sake? - Would your name be Grace Marks? - Yes.
Is this man a friend of yours? No, he is not.
The lady does not desire your company.
She is no lady.
She is a whore.
(BODY THUDS) I am Thomas Kinnear, your new employer.
I've come to fetch you.
Well, you've not been in town five minutes and you have managed to attract gentleman admirers.
GRACE: They are not.
Not gentlemen, or not admirers? This is Charley.
Up you go, Grace.
Do you mean me to sit in the front? Well, we can hardly have you in the back like a piece of luggage.
GRACE: I was not used to sitting beside a gentleman like him, but he didn't seem to give a second thought.
And there we were, driving up Yonge St.
, just as if I was a fine lady.
What did Mr.
Kinnear look like? He had a gentlemanly bearing, sir.
Is that all? You did not observe him very particularly.
I did not wish to gape at him, sir, and I would have needed to turn my whole head, because of my bonnet.
I suppose you've never worn a bonnet, have you, sir? No, I have not.
I expect it is confining.
It is that, sir.
Hello, Jamie.
This is Grace Marks, come all the way from Toronto.
I found her at the inn.
Jamie lives nearby and helps us around the farm from time to time.
JAMIE: Is it big, Toronto? Is it very grand? I have never been there.
Grand enough.
I could not find it in me to answer him properly about Toronto, because right then I was bitterly sorry I had ever left it.
(LAUGHING) GRACE: I heard her laughing.
She had not given me one word of greeting.
McDermott, take Grace's things to her room.
GRACE: Something squeezed tight about my heart.
When I close my eyes I can remember every detail of that house as clear as a picture.
I could walk through every room of it blindfolded.
It's strange to reflect that of all the people living in that house, I was the only one of them left alive in six months' time.
Though at that moment I had no particular feeling about it and only wanted a drink of water.
Eventually, Nancy gave me a proper tour of the house.
There's no separate laundry room, but the things for washing, the coppers, the washtub, and the scrubbing board, are present in the summer kitchen.
We don't keep a pig.
They're too clever for their own good.
Kinnear's old dog Fancy died.
I'd feel easier with a dog about the place to bark at strangers.
There's a trap door under here to the cellar.
GRACE: - I thought it was an odd place as the kitchen would have been more convenient, but the kitchen didn't have a cellar under it.
Go on, Grace.
Of course.
The cellar stairs were too steep for comfort, and the cellar itself was divided into two parts by a half-wall, the dairy on the one side, where they kept the butter and the cheeses, and, on the other side, the place where they stored the wine and the beer in barrels and apples and the cabbages and the beets and potatoes Yes, Grace but Yes, sir? I understand what is stored in a cellar.
Of course.
There is a window down there but you should always take a candle or a lantern.
It's very dark below and you could trip and fall down the stairs and break your neck.
(CELLAR DOOR SLAMS) GRACE: We did not go down into the cellar at that time.
Nancy, who was now all smiles, showed me to my room.
She had on a very handsome pair of earrings, which I could tell were real gold, and I wondered how she could afford them on the salary of a housekeeper.
I could see there was no love lost between McDermott and Nancy.
He is more surly than ever.
Well, he can suit himself and welcome.
It's a smile or the open road for him Or more likely the bottom of a ditch.
I am very glad to see you, Grace.
You must be very tired after your journey, it's very fatiguing.
Why don't you rest and start work in the morning? GRACE: I liked being early to rise.
That way, I could pretend for a little while that the house was all my own.
Mind your manners or I'll wring your neck.
Would that be me you're addressing? No, it would not.
I could tell what he had in mind, and it was not original.
(PIANO MUSIC PLAYING) GRACE: I did think it unusual for a housekeeper to be learning the piano.
But of course I said nothing.
And then everything went on very quietly for a fortnight? Yes, sir, it did.
More or less quietly.
What is everything? How did it go on? I beg your pardon, sir? What did you do every day? Oh, the usual, sir.
I performed my duties.
You will forgive me.
Of what did those duties consist? GRACE: You were not making a joke.
You really don't know.
Men such as yourself do not have to clean up the messes you make, but we have to clean up our own messes and yours into the bargain.
In that way you are like children.
You do not have to think ahead, or worry about the consequences of what you do.
But it is not your fault.
It is only how you were brought up.
(RHYTHMIC FOOTSTEPS) (PANTING) (TAPPING CONTINUES) And then? GRACE: Then I collected the slop pails and rinsed them out.
With a pump, you have to pour some in before you can get any out.
Mary Whitney used to say that was exactly how men viewed the flattering of a woman, when they had low ends in view.
Mary Whitney was not proper but she was honest.
So that's how you rinse out a slop pail.
Well, of course I went to the privy first to empty it.
I went to the privy and emptied the slop pail, and so forth.
And so forth? GRACE: Really, Doctor, I thought If you didn't know what you do in a privy there really is no hope for you.
What I did was, I hoisted my skirts and sat down above the buzzing flies, on the same seat everyone in the house sat on, lady or lady's maid, they both piss and it smells the same, and not like lilacs neither, as Mary Whitney used to say.
Some of the pictures were of duchesses from England and high-society ladies in New York and the like.
You should never let your picture be in a magazine or newspaper if you can help it, as you never know what ends your face may be made to serve by others once it has got out of your control.
But I did not say any of this to you, Dr.
And so forth.
And so forth is all you are entitled to, I thought.
Just because you pestered me to know everything was no reason for me to tell you.
- Good morning.
- GRACE: Good morning.
- Is the tea made? - GRACE: Yes.
Oh, I feel I am scarcely alive in the morning until I've had my cup of tea.
Kinnear will take his tea upstairs.
He will want a second cup when he comes down.
I will take it up.
At Mrs.
Parkinson's, the housekeeper would never carry the It was beneath her position and a job for the maids.
Of course.
I only took it up when short of help.
I've got into the habit of it lately.
Go ahead.
Your tea, sir.
Bring it in.
(GROANS) Thank you, Grace.
There's beautiful eggs this morning, sir.
Would you want one for your breakfast? Yes.
Thank you, Grace.
I'm sure it will do me good.
Kinnear wants an egg for his breakfast.
I will have one also.
He will have his fried, with bacon, and mine should be boiled.
We will have breakfast together in the dining room.
He requires me to keep him company.
He does not like to eat alone.
Is Mr.
Kinnear ill at all? No.
He just likes to be fussed over.
I wonder why he never married, a fine man like him.
Some gentlemen do not have an inclination for the married state.
They are very pleased with themselves the way they are and think they can get along well enough without it.
I suppose they can at that.
Certainly they can, if rich enough.
If they want a thing, all they have to do is pay for it.
It's all one to them.
(INAUDIBLE) His nightshirt needs to be aired out.
Yes, I was just about to.
And his dressing things are not to be laid out like this.
This is how he likes them.
And you'll need to polish the silver backs every week.
At Mrs.
Parkinson's we did it every three days.
I don't care, as you are not at Mrs.
His folded shirts are ready for wear and go on this shelf.
GRACE: What is this picture of? NANCY: It's Susanna and the Elders, which is a Bible subject.
GRACE: I know my Bible backwards and forwards and this is not one of the stories in it.
Yes, it is.
It is not.
You're not here to argue about paintings, but to clean the room.
Are you two discussing theology, and so early in the morning, too? It is nothing for you to be bothered by.
I should like to know what you were discussing.
It does not matter.
Well, Grace, I can see that Nancy wishes to keep it a secret from me, but you must tell me.
I I was wondering if this picture is of a Biblical subject, as Nancy says.
Oh, no.
Strictly speaking it is not.
The story is in the Apocrypha.
What might that be? You're very curious for such a young person.
Soon I will have the most learned maidservant in all Richmond Hill.
I'll have to put on a display like the mathematical pig in Toronto.
The Apocrypha is a book where they put all the stories from Biblical times they decided should not go in the Bible.
Who decided? I thought the Bible was written by God.
It is called the Word of God and everyone terms it so.
Perhaps God wrote it, but it was men who wrote it down, which is a little different.
But those men were said to have been inspired by God, which means he spoke to them, told them what to do.
Did they hear voices? Aye.
GRACE: I was glad to hear that someone else had heard voices too though I didn't say that.
In any case the voice I had heard, that one time, had not been God's but Mary Whitney's.
Do you know the story of Susanna? No.
She was a young lady who was falsely accused of sinning with a young man by a group of old men, because she refused to commit the very same sin with them.
She would have been stoned to death but luckily she had a very clever lawyer, and he was able to prove that the old men were lying by inducing them to give contradictory evidence.
What do you think the moral of it is? That you should not take baths outside in the garden.
(LAUGHS) I think the moral is you need a clever lawyer.
This girl is no simpleton after all.
Oh, I found a shirt clean and put away with a button missing.
It is very aggravating to put on a clean shirt only to discover you cannot do it up properly because of a lack of buttons.
Please mind that does not happen again.
You did not clean my shoes properly this morning.
Watch yourself.
You look tired.
You should sit down with me and have a cup of tea.
I cannot risk waiting on the laundry.
At this time of year there could be a quick change in the weather.
All right.
When you have it all hung up let's have a cup of tea, then.
GRACE: There is a great deal of pleasure to be had in a wash all clean and blowing in the wind.
The sound of it is like the hands of the heavenly hosts applauding, though heard from far away.
And they do say that cleanliness is next to Godliness.
And sometimes, when I have seen the pure white clouds billowing in the sky after a rain, I used to think that it was as if the angels themselves were hanging out their washing for I reasoned that someone must do it as everything in Heaven must be very clean and fresh.
But these were childish fancies, as children like to tell themselves stories about things that are not visible.
And I was scarcely more than a child at the time, though I thought of myself as a grown woman.
Excuse me.
Excuse me, Grace.
Yes, hello, Jamie.
I was wondering if there were any errands to be run.
I'll have to ask Nancy.
If I am sent into the village and there is any little thing that you should want, I would be glad to fetch it for you.
Thank you, Jamie.
Come inside and I'll tell you what we need.
And you must come back later and bring your flute.
He plays so beautifully.
It's a pleasure to hear.
Do you enjoy dancing? Why do you ask? I saw you dancing in the barn the other day.
You're a good dancer.
Maybe I am and maybe I'm not.
Tell me about your life before you came to work here.
- Who would care to hear about that? - GRACE: I would.
All such stories are of interest to me.
Me, myself, I've always been a scapegrace.
Never one to lick the boots of the rich.
And do you have a mother living? Whether I do or don't is all the same to me.
She had a bad opinion of me and told me I was going straight to the Devil.
She could be dead for all I know or care about it.
I deserted the army and stowed away on a ship bound for America.
When I got to this country I enlisted as a soldier in the Glengarry Light Infantry.
Didn't they have a bad reputation? My friend told me.
Didn't they burn down farmhouses during the Rebellion? Turn women and children out into the snow? Yeah, and they've done far worse besides.
There's some things they don't print in the papers.
But then the Rebellion ended and the regiment was disbanded and I heard about this position.
I thought I'd be working for the gentleman himself, but not so.
A woman is set over me instead.
One who never gives me a moment's rest from her tongue.
So do you have a sweetheart? Pretty girl like you might be expected to have one.
I do not.
I do not have any inclinations that way.
Well, that is a pity, but there's a first time for everything.
You'd only need breaking in like a colt and then you'll go as good as the rest of them.
I'm the man for the job.
I'll thank you to keep such offensive remarks to yourself.
I am not a mare.
I didn't mean it.
It's all in fun.
I just wanted to see what sort of a girl you might be.
What sort of a girl I might be is no business of yours.
Remain where you are.
I would rather have good butter than a curtsy.
Always busy I see, Grace.
Yes, sir.
The Devil finds work for idle hands to do.
I trust you do not mean me.
My hands are idle enough, but not nearly devilish enough for my liking.
Oh, no, sir, I did not mean you.
(CHUCKLES) It is very becoming for a young woman to blush.
NANCY: How's the butter coming along, Grace? Where is Mr.
Kinnear going? NANCY: To Colonel Bridgeford's.
His wife is away, so he can visit safely.
- When she's home he is not well received.
- Why ever not? He's is considered a bad influence by Mrs.
GRACE: Why? What has he done? Well, as far as I know he was packed off to the colonies to get him out of the way.
Why? The usual reasons, I suspect.
Debt or women.
Oh, there.
The butter is coming.
I don't like it down here.
It always smells of earth and mice and old vegetables.
I suppose most cellars do.
Perhaps it could be given a good airing out someday.
What on Earth is he doing? He just does that sometimes.
He says it is for exercise but really he just wants to be admired.
You should not pay any attention.
GRACE: So there I was pretending not to watch, and there he was, pretending not to be watched as women and men often do, and he was the sort of man who you knew you shouldn't look at, at all, but you looked anyway.
You brought your flute.
Grace fetch Jamie a mug of beer.
I'll have one, too.
I didn't know you had monkey blood in you.
You was leaping about like one.
Yeah, well, when the cat's away the mice do play.
Nancy always likes her little parties.
I'm sure the Welsh boy will be screeching on his tin whistle soon.
That is quite right.
And I will give myself the pleasure of hearing it.
To my mind that's no pleasure.
Well, you can suit yourself then.
I didn't mean to offend you before.
I've been so long around rough men whose manners are not the best.
I'm inclined to forget myself.
I don't know how to speak.
I'm just hoping you can forgive me and we can be friends.
Is forgiveness not ordained in the Bible? (JAMIE PLAYING FLUTE) And there we were, in a kind of harmony.
The evening was so beautiful it made a pain in my heart, as when you cannot tell whether you are happy or sad.
And I thought that if I could have a wish it would be that nothing would ever change and we could stay that way forever.
But the sun cannot be stopped in its path, except by God, and he has done that only once and will not do it again until the end of the world.
I thought, if I could have two fireflies on my ears for earrings I should be going home.
My father will be looking for me.
GRACE: I would not care at all about Nancy's gold ones.
Grace, make sure you lock all the doors and windows.
And will you sleep with me tonight? I'm afraid when Kinnear is not home.