Taboo (2017) s01e04 Episode Script

Episode 4

The assassin we sent to kill Delaney is dead.
The British want you dead.
I stitch you up and you give me information.
I will cede sovereignty of Nootka Sound to whichever nation offers me their monopoly.
All the tea in China.
As Horace Delaney's widow, I also own half of the trading post at Nootka Sound.
And I believe Nootka is of value to the King.
If you are in contact with the King, then you are already in grave danger.
I hope I can trust you to keep the secrets of the past buried.
I am your sister.
Let all else lie.
You take the minutes and you log every meeting.
I want that information.
You think your father's kid feeds himself? Now you're back, I want payment.
We were given your name.
I am not a courtesan.
Give her to me! There appears to have been a misunderstanding.
She stabbed the Duke of Richmond.
They knew she was not a whore and that she would fight back.
And now they have a good reason to come for her.
[footsteps approaching.]
Open this door, by order of the King! James! James! They are here! James, for God's sake! What's happening?! They will want you to sign their papers or you will hang.
Hang for what? Saving my honour?! You must hold out.
You will hold out.
Look at me.
These men are from the Crown.
I will warn the East India - and they will free you.
- What are you talking about? You must go with them now.
I will be with you when you're inside and you will know it.
Hold out.
Hello! Come with us! I got another one for ya! Aren't you a pretty one?! Come on! [whimpering.]
This is allocated.
The famous Lorna Bow.
Think of the queue that'll form.
An actress, no less.
No! Don't leave me! No, please! You will answer to God for this.
And for the many other evil tasks I have carried out for the King of England.
[door slams and lock turns.]
And the Prince Regent.
There was a misunderstanding.
The Duke was given the wrong name.
Each ribbon represents a reason not to comply.
As each ribbon is untied, a reason disappears.
Let me explain.
Under English law, as Delaney's wife, you have the legal right to contest his will, on the grounds of insanity.
There's a copy of a marriage certificate.
Horace Delaney.
A legal precedent from 1755.
Now, that is an application to contest the will, which we've already drawn up.
The granting of leave for that application, by King's Counsel.
And the successful outcome of that application, dated one month from now.
And finally an agreement to assign your share of the Nootka trading post, smoke house and tanning factory to the possession of the British Crown.
Or a conviction for attempted murder, for which you hang.
No, this really is terribly simple.
Exposed as you are, in this hell.
You're weak.
Men of all kinds.
Your hands shackled.
A key and a pen are your only weapons.
So, you take this pen in your hand, you sign your name and I turn the key and you dress and you leave with ã1,000 for your trouble.
I have been told to await a better offer.
James said James?! Oh, James.
My God.
I see.
So soon.
You can go.
[door unlocked.]
[door slammed & lock turned.]
My wife is a strange fish.
I talk to her about my work, when we sit up in bed at night.
Her belief is that James Delaney is in league with Satan.
I believe that to be true, too.
So, as we explore ways to make you change your mind these next few hours we will be doing God's work.
Hurry up! Miss Bow.
I can find my own carriage.
Delaney has business but he instructed me to make sure you get home safely.
Did he say "home"? I don't quite recall.
Miss Bow, if you please.
We had a fucking agreement! Common cause! I saw the papers with my own eyes.
The assignation they were trying to make her sign gave Nootka to the Crown and only the Crown.
Fucking snakes! If we didn't have so much shit on the Duke of Richmond, - they would have had her.
- Who tipped you off? Anonymous note.
He's turning London into his own private bear pit.
And what are we, the bear or the dogs? Shit! And that fat pig Prince Prinny plays the fool, so he can better play the game.
I'll pop him.
I swear to God.
I'll burst him, like a pig's bladder.
Get a message to Coop.
Tell him we withdraw our negotiators from the India talks.
The Prince Regent has decided to decline your offer.
- For crying out loud, Godders.
- He will not offer you a monopoly.
So doesn't that mean the game is up, James? No, it's just begun.
What else? The hand was raised.
They talked about gunpowder.
[delaney grunts.]
Pettifer said if Delaney Trading Company wanted to trade with the Indians at Nootka, the only merchandise you could possibly use would be gunpowder.
Wilton pointed out that in times of war, the production of gunpowder is controlled by the Crown.
You will not be granted a licence to purchase.
Your name is already on a blacklist.
You will not get a single grain anywhere in England.
So, now is the game up? When they speak of you, there is such hatred now.
Before, they laughed.
They stopped laughing out there.
That's good.
That's a good thing, Godders.
For God's sake.
The Art Of War.
Poor motive, poor strategy poor outcome.
They can't kill you, but they will crucify your name and crucify all those around you.
But I don't keep anybody around me that doesn't deserve what they get.
Does that include me? Yes, that includes you.
Only half a man.
[explosion, crowd gasps.]
Thank you.
Now, finally, here, I'm introducing chlorine gas to a solution of sal ammoniac.
Ladies, beware, these are corrosive substances.
They will ravage your dresses.
So, the combination produces a yellow, oily fluid that will explode with sunlight or heat or mere motion.
In order to show you most simply and safely its explosive effect, I use this instrument to transfer very carefully just a few drops.
And, again, beware.
Use your hand to protect your eyes.
The vessel is often shattered to atoms, by sheer force.
Terrific! Magnificent! Mr.
I cancelled my appointment.
Blamed a headache.
Exposure to excitable chemical fumes, I imagine.
As a doctor, I ought to make sure you're fully recovered.
Something in your eye.
Do you have a husband? Dead.
Thank God.
What did he look like? A toad.
I have a question.
It concerns chemistry.
I hope now is not inconvenient.
Wait! I wrote a fucking book about chemistry.
If you've got any questions about chemistry, then read that.
I already did.
I was very impressed.
That's why I'm here.
I have a use for you.
You know, semen not ejaculated at the point of passion turns to poison and narrows the mind.
Eventually, you become an ape.
So, ejaculate.
Then, we can talk of business.
Is that gold? Has the semen yet turned to poison? I believe you invented a chemical process for verification.
So, what exactly is it you would use me for? [thunder rumbles.]
[key jangles in lock.]
I got a carpenter to take down those boards and put up a new door.
You should try a key next time.
They've turned a few things over.
We should bill the King.
- She's back, yes? - Aye.
How does she seem? The same.
But then, she's an actress.
You knew they were coming to take her, didn't you? All part of the plan.
I have things to do.
We're all just part of the plan, aren't we, sir? Buy her some flowers.
You said I'm a weakness.
I wasn't weak.
I will fix that.
I'll get Brace to fix that.
In the cell, I called you "James".
I think that surprised them most.
Certainly surprised me.
If your intervention had been ten minutes later, I would have been raped.
But the consequence for you was worth the risk to me, yes? You see me as I am.
All of those that I gather are damned.
It's just part of a company policy of mine.
Perhaps now you will understand why it is better for you to leave and let this business run its course.
Is that why you let it happen? To teach me a lesson? No.
That was to teach the King a lesson.
And the Company.
But if you're absolutely resolute on staying then I may agree to incorporate you into the organisation.
Oh, I see.
I've passed a test.
I will join the League of the Damned.
A group of people who are drawn together, with a willingness to do exactly as I say.
We are the ships, you are the river.
First, I need you to bring me a trunk full of my father's belongings.
I'm actually very tired, Mr.
Your conspiracies have made it a very tiring day.
I'll fix that.
Sleep on it.
Deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.
John Company and the King are back at war.
The resolution again recedes.
Fuck him! You woke me.
Please don't.
Your coat's all wet.
And you're wet, too.
Who's in there? Who's in there? Where he leads, I will follow.
[cock crows.]
Where the fuck are we? My new factory.
I flagged him down at St Pancras.
I told him two shillings.
I guessed you'd pay.
Hold on.
Nitrous oxide.
They call it "laughing gas".
I provide it for entertainment at society parties.
It's good money.
Last night, it was, eh Oh, fuck, I can hardly remember.
Duck hunters and whores dressed as ducks I think.
I had to partake of my own supply, just to get through it.
Pweugh! Anyway show me this cow shit.
Hmm Pigeon shit? [cooing.]
Yeah, it's better.
Now wood.
Some birch, but it is mostly hazel.
Oak is better.
There's not enough oak on the heath, dear boy.
So, buy offcuts from the shipyard.
Nothing we use can be purchased openly.
What about piss? I'm sorry? Human urine's by far the best for leaching the ash.
Especially if there are traces of alcohol.
How many humans live here? Three.
- Where are they, by the way? - I sent them away this morning.
Do you own this farm? Ask no more questions now and talk to me only of chemistry.
My simple question is, is it possible to achieve it here? If you mix the pigeon shit and the cow shit at a ratio of around 60:40 in favour of the pigeon.
I'd have to do tests.
Then, if you burnt all that stack of wood today, you could soak the ash in 50 gallons of human piss and leave it for a minimum of a year.
Then, my friend, you would, indeed, have gunpowder.
I don't have a year.
Well, I have a theory that the introduction of several barrels of saltpetre that have already been refined at the start of the process can cut the leaching stage down to four weeks.
"Theory"? Yes, but my theories are always right.
As far as I know, there is only one place where one can find - refined saltpetre.
- Two.
The bat caves of Burma, where the bat shit refines itself, or the warehouse of the East India Company at Wapping Wall.
Except, they're not selling, at the moment.
War going on.
Two wars, actually.
Or have we already won one of them? You're hired, Mr.
And as for your saltpetre, I will get it for you.
Hm? [liquid dripping.]
He's the one.
[metallic sliding.]
[man screams.]
Who are you? I told your friends Nootka Sound is not for sale.
Come on, then.
How the hell can you walk around a house this old without making a noise? Because I own it, and I know every creak in it and I can move around it without waking it up.
When was the last time you set foot inside a church, sir? The lady asked me to wake her because she had a costume fitting.
I guessed you wouldn't want her going out.
No, the lady is free to come and go as she pleases.
The Crown will protect her from the Company.
And the Company will protect her from the Crown.
- And you are the joint in the seesaw.
- Mm.
By the way, I found your red roses in the mud when I threw out the oyster shells.
- Who's this? - Who the hell's what? Brace, do not believe that I will not know when you reseal my letters.
Countess Musgrove is, let me think, sir 1,550 places above you in the social hierarchy of London.
Her husband is a little, fat German prick and she fucks You forgot to wake me.
Fucks what, Brace? Countess Musgrove has a reputation as a lady of uncertain origin, sir, who in the past used her beauty to beguile men of great influence, thereby improving her position in society.
She also allows and even encourages the closed and turning waltz.
A ball.
And why would she invite a man who cannot dance? Perhaps she likes oddities and curiosities.
Or if she knows you're in the house in the light, you cannot be outside lurking in the garden in the dark scaring people.
There is another letter, sir.
Perhaps related to the first.
- This came from the same post? - Aye, sir.
The Americans.
Wanting a place on the seesaw.
Well, it is an invitation for two.
Miss Bow? Do you dance? Where is she? Where's Helga? I'll get her.
Winter said you looked impressed.
I am.
Oysters mask the smell of sex.
You like that.
Yes, I might have a use for that, actually.
You may need to bring a couple of girls to the Dolphin with you.
Now, shut for the evening.
You're busy tonight.
Right, a request to hire men and boats to collect barrels from the Prospect of Whitby pub and ferry them up the Fleet River to Hampstead.
Barrels will contain [chuckles.]
whores' urine.
And that of the customers.
Thruppence a barrel.
I want you to sign that right now before whatever it is in your blood wears off.
And I'm planning a robbery.
At last.
Back in the world of reason and rationality.
Who are we going to rob? Elizabeth.
- And Mary.
- Thank you so much.
Now, if you will excuse me, ladies.
Come on.
Posy for the lady? Much obliged, kind sir.
For you.
There's other business afoot tonight, none of which concerns you.
Miss Lorna Bow.
Lorna Delaney.
And Mr.
James Delaney.
Judging by the horror on the faces of the ladies, you are known.
Yes, and judging by the shame on the face of some of the men, so are you.
Oh, if only I had been a whore, I might have been as rich as Countess Musgrove, who I presume is that creature.
Not hello.
- Who the hell is that? - I've no idea.
And who the hell was that? [laughter.]
- Why are you here? - Because I was invited.
You? Because my husband was invited.
He has business of theirs in Berlin.
Ah, but it is a bit unexpected, isn't it? It's unusual.
I knew that when you saw me, you would come to me and I realise that is how it always is.
You always drive me It is a bit unexpected that we were both invited, is it not? That we were invited, both together.
And if they invited us both, then they probably know.
Who knows? Who knows? Our American friends.
Ah! You feel me, don't you, when I break in? - No.
- Yes, you do.
- No.
- You do.
You feel me.
And I could come more often, but I spare you.
Then spare me.
I went to a doctor, he took me to a priest who had been to a mission in Africa.
- Yes, what did he say? - He said that you visit as animals.
He couldn't even look at me after I'd told him.
When I left England, I thought I was mad, but they taught me how to use it.
Now it's a gift.
It's the devil.
Now, amongst other things, I am also a doctor.
And I'd say the lady is in danger of catching more than just a chill out here.
Your half-sister.
Am I right? [whistles.]
You're quite a prize, Mr.
Delaney, quite a prize.
I was told what you did to our first resort.
Opened him up like a bull.
Nice work.
Now, I make no moral judgments.
And besides, Carlsbad said to say that you can have her.
You can have her as part of the deal.
Part of our second offering.
So why don't you just take her? Just take her with you.
No more hiding.
We can guarantee you safe passage, anonymity new worlds.
But look, if you don't want to deal with the obstacle, we can certainly take care of that for you.
Say her husband gets drunk.
No surprise.
Falls from a bridge or something.
Let me just make the point from an American point of view.
Love is now part of the deal that we are offering over and above that which is on offer from your countrymen.
Hm? I'll leave that with you.
And don't worry how we know so much.
Hm? We just know so much.
I were stowed'way from India on the Fairlie.
And I'm full with thirst and the temptations of the Tropics and have a great need to ease 'em.
Pearl's good, isn't she? Get in, come on, get in.
Good evening.
I'm just a complete stranger, plying my wares, offering the gift of hysteria before the night is over.
That stranger that you've never met, is he part of your League of the Damned? Well, we could at least try? Sorry.
- Would you like to dance? - No.
He said a few drops.
Give it here.
Give it here.
Get back.
Get back.
Get back.
Get the saltpetre! Keep moving.
Keep moving.
Two more.
Come on, keep moving.
Come on, go, go, go, go, go! Move, move! Get out! Go! You know James Delaney? No.
What? You mean in the way that no-one really knows James Delaney? Yes.
I've only not known James a little while.
But I have the feeling you've not known him a little longer.
- We were children - Oh! Thank you.
If I were to have intentions regarding James, would I need to be wary of you? No civilised woman would have intentions regarding him.
And you would not need to be wary of me.
We have the same father.
You are in every way an unopened box.
Just when I think it's empty, I hear a tiger roaring inside it.
I want you to bring the trunk with my father's belongings tomorrow.
I thought you might have gone.
Oh, you mean you waited? For me? No I wanted to finish my pipe.
I want you to bring my father's possessions tomorrow - or our association is finished.
- James Delaney? The Countess Musgrove.
I don't dance.
A gentleman called Colonnade told me that you do.
As hostess, I thought I would dance the outrageous dance with an outrageous guest.
Yet I do not dance, madam.
Well, then we shall disappear.
Come on.
The Countess Musgrove.
Just do as I do and all will be well.
As a rule, I do this trick with a beautiful woman ALL: Ooh! and a chimpanzee.
In the absence of a chimpanzee, a gorilla will have to do.
[jeering and laughter.]
Please, madam, please, sir, take a deep breath and step into the beyond.
One wonders if they will ever be seen again! I did my research on you.
Genevieve Decoux.
From New Orleans.
Please, Mr.
Delaney, we do not have much time.
You sent the giant to kill me? The outcome persuaded us you should be courted instead.
What will the gorilla do with the lady, one wonders.
Eat her, perhaps! Oh, where did they go? Countess, I know this is business.
And I think I know who you are.
But know this.
I control the timing of this.
At all times your life is in our hands.
As is your name in mine.
Oh, it seems we have one but not the other Where is my gorilla? Get back in there, Lady Musgrove, and find that humping gorilla of yours.
I was told you wanted tea.
A monopoly.
- Fanciful, of course.
- Hm.
I want to meet with the Embassy in Paris.
Oh, no.
You assign to the United States, where someone will kill you.
This time, we will be more artful.
Hm! You will need to be.
Your own sister.
Oh, goodness! Is he here? Is this real? Why's he here? Is it him? You should get away.
Why is he here? You fu you fucked her! He fucked her.
He fucked her! He fu You need some air.
Please, don't.
James? James? You call this thing James? You don't call him anything but nigger! You fucked her.
And you lay your hands on me in my society! I know I will have my satisfaction.
I declare it! I challenge James Delaney to a duel.
At dawn to the death.
To the death.
Do you accept? Do you accept?!
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