Versailles (2015) s03e01 Episode Script

Smoke and Mirrors

We can never comprehend this world.
We can only learn that there are dangers.
And there are secrets.
Some secrets bring with them release, redemption.
But others are best buried deep in the earth, never to be found.
The Lord said, "I have set before you life and death.
"The choice is our own.
" Do we make a bargain with God? Or do we trade with the Devil? Feels good to be home, sir.
That's not what I'd call it.
Long live the King! Good luck to you, my friend.
Emperor Leopold of Hungary, Archduke of Austria and leader of the Holy Roman Empire.
I kiss the hand of the victor and proffer the humble supplication of my people and my crown.
The King accepts your wishes with respect.
Welcome to Versailles.
I can't help but ask why you invited me and not William of Orange.
I thought perhaps you and I might speak the same language.
Your Majesty.
You should know your sister bore her last days with great fortitude.
Please accept our condolences on your wife's passing.
The King is most kind.
I hope he brings such generosity to the terms of the treaty.
There is so much to discuss.
You've done all of France proud.
You've made me proud, brother.
I see you've been busy.
Indeed.
AndI have a surprise to show you.
I built this palace as a symbol of imagination and human achievement.
But that wasn't enough.
Every body needs its heart.
Every crown must have its jewel.
Versailles needed a diamond so bright, you might think it was forged by the creator of the sun, the moon and the stars - a beacon to the world, reflecting the power and glory of God himself.
The Galerie des Glaces, now completed.
Voila! Gloria tua .
.
et gloria dedicatur .
.
aedificationis Francorum.
Your go.
Come on, hand over the money! Well, about bloody time! Guillaume, come here! I thought you'd never come home.
Hey! Bastien! Well, you didn't get any prettier, did you, eh? Good to see you in one piece, boss.
So did Jeanne look after you lot while I was away? Your sister can crack the whip, all right! Only when they're slacking .
.
which is most of the time.
Sohow was it? Over.
That's all needs said.
Right, so hurry up and get out of that uniform.
We have got work to do.
Come on, lads! Move it! The servants must be crisp and clean as the linen, the wine perfectly chilled and the glasses never empty.
And these flowers are flaccid.
I want only the blooms bursting with vigour.
The King has decreed this event should represent the pinnacle of France's success.
I do not wish to disappoint him.
Go.
Sotell me how much you missed me.
I was somewhat preoccupied, marshalling troops, defending the Empire and dodging death.
I have been rather busy myself.
All that cavorting and carousing must be quite gruelling.
Of course I must hear all about your derring-do on the field of battle.
But we have a little surprise for you first.
Say hello to little Philippe.
He just might be a future king of France.
A fighting tiger, like his father.
Make it stop! You're not holding him correctly.
You need to support his head.
Oh! He's hungry.
And you're not anatomically equipped.
You should have seen the birth.
Utter carnage.
Sohere we are.
The hero returns.
You have a remarkable sense of timing, Bontemps.
It's a natural talent, sir.
Your presence is required immediately.
I've only just got here.
Not you, Your Highness - the Chevalier de Lorraine.
He must open festivities.
"There is no peace," says the Lord, "for the wicked.
" How much longer, Uncle? I can't wait for the festivities! I want to dance.
Patience, child.
You're representing your country and your family.
To acquire an eminent husband, you will remain silent .
.
and drink no wine.
I thought that this was a palace of fun.
For the French, perhaps.
It remains to be seen how an Austrian is entertained.
I think Louis seems very generous.
Ha! Louis is never what he seems.
He'll find a way to make us pay .
.
somehow.
There.
Your destiny is there for the taking .
.
if you choose to seize it.
Your people are waiting.
Who could fail to be impressed, my King? It's nice to be home.
So is he sleeping with the ice queen or not? Moot point.
They're certainly thick as thieves.
Some women simply aren't built for sex .
.
apparently.
This is a special day for France.
We might be victorious in battle, but we greet Emperor Leopold not as an old enemy, but as a new friend.
I have invited him here not to debate sanctions, but to discuss creating a new world where our empires co-exist, a partnership that can benefit all.
To that end, we welcome him to Versailles - the beating heart of France.
All this glitter - you would not think this country broke.
This is also a time to give thanks .
.
to God, above all.
Without his hand, we would not have peace.
And to my brother, whose strength and valour have given us this glorious victory.
Enjoy! Excuse me.
This must be hard for you, I imagine.
No, I'm fine.
I know how to survive.
We should spend some time together.
We haven't spoken properly in ages.
You're fully occupied, evidently.
It's such a shame.
We used to be so close, but .
.
things get in the way.
How is the King these days? I think he knows himself better than he used to.
He can be a hard man to satisfy.
We have an understanding.
A deeper connection.
I don't see you by his side much in public.
I know my place.
I am not the Queen.
Nor am I a harlot who will sin with impunity.
Your Highness.
Your Majesty.
I was hoping we might meet again.
Unfortunate you had to lose the war to do so.
You are still beautiful, Marie-Therese.
I am older.
None of us can escape time.
But as the years pass, one gains more appreciation for the finer things in life.
Life here is about seeking pleasure for everyone else, except the Queen.
I would very much like to spend time with you.
I don't think that would be wise.
Suzanne? Yes, Madame? I didn't wish to startle you.
I just wanted to check.
I heard that you once worked at the chateau de Villarceaux.
Yes.
Yes? Well, I was wondering - do you remember any of the guests that were staying there? Madame de Maintenon, for instance? They say that, to find out what really happens behind closed doors, you just have to ask the chambermaid.
Your victory has given me great honour.
It's my soldiers who should be honoured.
Such modesty becomes you, brother.
I have learnt much.
Which is why I want you by my side in government.
It's entirely against protocol.
The protocol that I dictate.
I'm no longer a child to be humoured.
And I'm not given to empty gestures.
I would not be another of your lap dogs.
Besides, Versailles is complete and the war won.
What more could any man ask for? You can rest, sire.
Enjoy your success.
But I'm not finished yet.
Sire? Call the council.
They will assemble early, as expected.
Now! It is time to write the next chapter of our glorious empire.
To stand still is to die, so we cannot wait.
Sit! We must seize the moment before us to embrace our destiny and to create our future.
Our new priorities must be twofold - to protect our state from the foreign foe, and to consolidate our overseas territories in tandem.
To that end, I will enlist Vauban to make our borders unimpeachable and de Villiers to construct a valiant fleet for the Americas.
An admirable ambition, sire.
And one we could achieve if you were to extract costs from Emperor Leopold as condition of the treaty.
War is about territory, not money.
But our resources are depleted, sire.
That's what tax is for, is it not? This will benefit all of France, so everyone must pay for it.
The people will not like it, sire.
My role is not to please the people.
Many are struggling to pay the tolls already, sire.
Paris is crippled by hardship and poverty.
Sickness is rife and the sewage is a curse in itself.
"And he showed me a pure river of water of life ".
.
clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God.
" Sire? They need clean water, don't they? Then I shall provide fresh drinking water to slake their thirst.
And of the darkness in the city, I shall light up the streets to keep them safe.
We are creating a new France, a new world! How can my people love me if I am not a benevolent father? Thanks for coming, Guillaume.
It's not every day the likes of me gets to come here, sir.
You might find it's overrated.
You must have had quite a party.
We always do.
And you? Oh, I haven't had the time.
But it feels good to be back where I belong.
I wish I shared your enthusiasm.
So what did you want to see me about, Your Highness? There's someone I'd like you to meet.
It was an act of extreme bravery.
The battle was over and the field was awash with blood.
And I was wading through the broken bodies, alone.
I never felt such relief.
The enemy was playing dead, and I had walked into the lion's maw.
Good God! They were behind our lines, they knew they would die, so they attacked like men possessed.
I killed two, but the third had struck me down hard.
And then this fearless soldier came from nowhere and cut them down, one after the other, as if it was the sole reason God had put him on this earth! He risked his life, simply to save mine! You, Guillaume, are the true heart of France.
How can we ever repay you? I have no need of payment, sire.
Integrity as well as bravery.
What is your trade? I'm just a tanner, sire.
I make shoes - my sister and I.
And how fares your business? All trades struggle to make ends meet nowadays, sire.
Then that will be your reward - you shall be exclusive purveyor to Versailles.
Does that meet with your approval? Good.
I'm in heaven on earth! I wish I could live here forever.
At this rate, it seems we might have to.
Who would have thought defeat could offer so much pleasure? William of Orange loses once again.
It amazes me how you could fight alongside the very leader of the Protestant world.
The craft of war often entails expediency.
Even with the Pope's blessing, yours was an unholy alliance against a true Catholic empire.
Hm.
Yet you entertain many Protestants in your own court.
Loyal subjects - every one.
One can barely tell them apart.
And you're happy for them to live amongst you, yet you're a defender of the Catholic faith? Protestant or Catholic, we are all French here.
We are made, Jeanne! I met the King! You did what?! You want to see all the gold! It's the most beautiful place in the whole world.
And we are to be a part of it! No! This can't be right.
This doesn't happen to our sort.
Get some cups.
Hold up, everyone! Hold your work! Good news, for all of us.
The King has granted us a contract - to provide our wares to the nobles of Versailles.
We'll have to work harder, of course, maybe get a bigger place, more suppliers.
God knows how big this could be.
Please, everyone, gather round! Let's go! The King! The King! Long live the King! You were always an expert in tittle-tattle.
You're not interested in the chitchat from the salon? You mistake me for a common gossip.
No, merely someone who enjoys fulsome entertainment.
I take no pleasure in misfortune of others.
So you don't want to hear about the King's pious favourite, then? Apparently, she has a very shady past indeed.
Nonsense.
Well, I've heard, from a reliable source, that she spent a long summer at the chateau de Villarceaux.
And? Well, she had the express purpose of gaining favour and access with the nobility .
.
by selling her body.
Poppycock! Her arse is tight enough to uncork a wine bottle! How many Protestants do you suppose we might have at court? Difficult to say, sire.
In the hundreds, I imagine.
This causes you concern? Simple curiosity.
It's hard to tell these days.
I didn't realise they were a threat.
Some Huguenots plotted against me in the Fronde.
Along with Catholic noblemen, if this old man remembers correctly.
While French Protestants fought with you against William of Orange.
It's not that I have anything against them, per se.
His Majesty will recall his grandfather's wisdom and magnanimity.
The Edict of Nantes was decreed to accommodate French people of all faiths.
You're right.
Magnanimity.
A furrowed brow doesn't suit you, my dear.
I am vexed, sire.
Some of us were born Protestants through no fault of our own.
Yes, but then you saw the light.
I see it every day.
Forgive me, sire.
I fear I am not made this way.
Anyone might think you were toying with me.
But we are forbidden that type of love as you are married before God.
It's the water and the street lighting that are pushing us towards crisis.
The combined costs will take us at least 30% over the anticipated budget.
I must urge His Majesty to reconsider.
I think it's a great idea - the people of Paris live in squalor.
It's the least we could do for them.
Gentlemen, let me introduce you to our newest member of the council, bringing with him fresh insight .
.
and challenge.
Now, where were we? Deeply in debt, sire.
Then we must increase taxation to address the shortfall.
I'm providing employment for thousands.
They will be grateful.
Of course, sire.
If I may draw His Majesty's attention to a fresh conundrum in the Americas? It seems our first settlers were unsuitable.
Those that survived the voyage were then confronted with disease and savage natives.
So we need 400 men of firm constitution.
They must be strong yet dispensable.
Why not send our troops? That's hardly fair.
They've risked their lives and limbs fighting for us.
Quite.
But we must dispatch someone.
Why not convicted criminals? The gaols are overflowing and cost a fortune.
It would kill two birds rather deftly, don't you think? The logic is undeniable.
But the emigrants would have to be reliable to some degree.
So the Duc d'Orleans should select the suitable candidates himself, paying particular attention to the poisoners.
With pleasure.
I am pleased you accepted my offer.
This can't be true? Tell me it's a wicked rumour.
My dear Delphine, you have me at a loss.
Word has it the King is less than happy with us.
It's absurd! What could he possibly have against Protestants? I saw the way he looked at us.
I can assure you, the King is thinking only of his people.
Yes, but which people? We're all equal before God.
If you could arrange an audience, I'd like to remind him that our faith simply offers freedom of thought.
There is no need.
The King has no issue with you.
But it's not much to ask, Francoise.
We all know you have the King's ear.
And possibly other parts of him too.
The King and I have an understanding.
We connect through heart and soul.
You do make life hard for yourself.
One is permitted to have fun once in a while.
God frowns upon wanton indulgence.
Was that what they said in the Chateau de Villarceaux? I'm sorry? Are you all right? The heat of debate has made me flush.
If you will excuse me, I need some air.
When was the last time you threw your head back and laughed aloud? My sister was the one known for her laughter.
Yes, that was one of the things I liked about her.
As the years went by, I heard it less and less.
That's because she hated you.
Isn't that the fate of all marriages? I love my husband.
Yet he's a Bourbon.
Even surrounded by all this, he still doesn't know how to appreciate true beauty.
Don't take me for a fool, Leopold.
What do you want? I want to talk to the King, but he's making me wait.
Can't say I blame him - I'd do the same.
You want me to persuade him to see you, is that all? No.
I asked for all prison records, Bontemps.
Bring me everything there is.
That would be a veritable mountain of paperwork.
Then I shall scale it.
A good job is worth doing properly.
Thank you.
Oh, come on, Francoise! Not every woman is the threat.
What is the point of friendship if we are not honest with each other? It is the King.
He treats you only with respect.
Yes.
But he has becomeimpatient.
How can that be? You grant his every wish.
Not every wish.
You haven't shared his bed? Nofor fear that I might lose him.
Well, you will definitely lose him if you don't! But that would be the beginning of the end.
Louis has destroyed every woman that he has slept with.
Perhaps.
But heart and soul will only see you so far.
You cannot deny our nature.
Every man has his needs.
And every woman knows how to satisfy them.
And who knows? You might actually enjoy it.
Madame? I believe His Majesty would like some company.
You have done the King a service.
But you must never return here and you must never approach him.
Is that understood? But MadameI thought that you wanted me to You will never meet his gaze again.
Is that understood? Yes, Madame.
You missed a splendid soiree in the salon.
And here we are.
.
.
alone .
.
at last.
Are you just going to keep stating the obvious? Not when I have a much better idea.
No.
I said no.
So we'rewe're going to take this seriously or not? I don't know.
Perhaps you're more interested in shoe-makers now.
Guillaume was just a friend.
So why won't you let me touch you? You're like a complete stranger! You're like this every time you come home.
Got a bug in your britches! Says the cuckoo in the nest.
It might have escaped your notice, but things have moved on since you've been away.
I can't disagree with you there.
So we're wasting our time, then, aren't we? LookI was looking forward to seeing you.
But then I I just I'll bid you goodnight, then.
I thought I might find you here.
I was confessing my sins.
His Majesty is content? He is.
How much longer does the King wish me to stay as his guest? Until we become friends.
Only then will we find a way we can work together.
You have my attention.
You are vulnerable to attack from the Muslim Ottoman Empire.
I will guarantee my total support.
I'll even send the troops to defend Vienna.
And in exchange? You will allow me to reclaim the territories of Strasbourg and Luxembourg.
Ha-ha! I knew it couldn't be that simple.
This is a time for big ideas .
.
and brave leaders.
Those territories belong to the Vatican.
I've been entrusted with them.
Then you should discuss it with the Pope.
I imagine he would welcome my Catholic backing against a Muslim foe.
I'll give your offer the consideration it deserves.
Too thin.
Too old.
Too .
.
shit! Marquis de Chevret - poisoned his wife so he could marry his cousin for money.
Your Lordship, how would you like to meet the cannibal savages of the Americas? Excellent! Now, the Duc de Sullun.
Hell, no! Where is he? He was moved years ago.
Where is he now? I don't know.
I never got near him.
We weren't even allowed to see his face.
But will he relinquish Strasbourg and Luxembourg? He'll have no choice.
We've won the war.
Now to win the peace.
I've made an extensive shortlist of rogues for export to the Americas.
But there's one prisoner I cannot pinpoint.
Who is the Duc de Sullun? I do not know that name.
Nor me, sire.
Well, that's what I thought.
How can there be a duc that no-one's heard of? He's a noble.
He must have some significance.
Yet there's no record of his crime, his family or his sentence.
It's like he doesn't exist.
Find the wretched creature and send him to the Americas! I will.
So how fares our city of water and light? Well, the engineers are digging a ring sewer for the right bank of the Seine.
They plan to re-route to the river Bievre on the left.
Good.
But our principle drawback remains the cash flow, sire.
The collection of taxes is increasingly fraught.
Then we must find an efficient solution.
You a carpenter? Right, that'll do.
The able-bodied shall report for work.
And for those hungry for work, the King offers opportunities.
There are sewers to be dug, lanterns to be raised and taxes to be paid.
Right, you! Over here! Hurry up! Come on, everyone! Stand in line! Come on! There's no justice in this city.
I am justice.
And you will pay your dues.
I thought the prisoner was unaccounted for.
Not any more.
The real record had been buried as if someone didn't want me to find it.
Is this really wise, Your Highness? How dull life would be if we were always so wise.
But this is no ordinary prison.
The Bastille holds the most dangerous prisoners and madmen.
There's something underhand going on.
I want to see the Duc de Sullun for myself.
At least wait until tomorrow.
And bring musketeers! "God looked down and saw the earth was without form ".
.
and void.
"And darkness was upon the face of the deep.
"And the spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
" You may take off your blindfolds.
"And God said, 'Let there be light.
' And there was light.
" How can I thank you, my Lord and Saviour .
.
now I have might over my enemies? I have the adoration of my people.
I'm alive to your wishes.
I can feel you in my veins.
I pledge my life to do your will on earth, to show love and to show mercy, to celebrate the virtuous and to punish the sinners.
For all your bounty, I give you thanks.
How could I ever have doubted you? You have given me the wealth of King David and power beyond my greatest desires.
And there is nothing that can take that away from me.