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Escape from the Happy Place is the fifth episode of the fourth season of the television series The Magicians, and the forty-fourth episode overall.

Synopsis

Alice and Quentin confront a dog; there are some flashbacks.

Plot

Eliot is having a flashback, a memory of being in the Physical Kids Cottage, and showing the new student Todd how to make a cocktail. Then he is in the middle of a party, very happy with Margo. Throughout this there is someone occasionally knocking on the front door, and every time Eliot says not to answer it. Then he's with Margo, smoking at the party. Then he is, again, showing Todd for the first time how to make a cocktail. Again there's a knock at the door, and this time Margo goes and answers it. From outside, a hand grabs her and pulls her out the door. Eliot yelps, runs to the door, outside the Cottage... and he's walking out of an academic building, not the Cottage. It's the empty Brakebills campus we saw in the last episode. He hears Margo scream, and he chases that way. He finds Margo strangling an unfamiliar young man, who says "they" are coming, and the three of them should just go back to the Cottage. Eliot is unconvinced, but there's a wild animal sound nearby, and they run back to the Cottage.

The Monster and Quentin are in the diner, and the Monster wants Quentin to be over his problem with Eliot, the Monster should be his new friend. The Monster shows him something he found, a stone oval, and asks what it is; Quentin says it looks like something from the start of civilization, like Mesopotamia.... The Monster says that's enough, and disappears.

In the Cottage, the young man names himself Charlton, and explains to Eliot that the Cottage, and everything outside, are just memories, Eliot's body is possessed by the Monster, and it stuck Eliot in this tiny place of happy memories, a Happy Place, memories like Margo (who disappears when the young man requests it). Charlton says he's not a memory, he is, like Eliot, someone once possessed by the Monster, he was the one that Eliot shot, causing the Monster to jump to Eliot's body. Eliot is eager to get out and back to reality, but Charlton says there's no way, the Monster has creatures that appear when people try to escape, he calls them "horrible wretched mistakes of the gods." There had been another possessed soul that had wanted to get out, to find her door to escape, but as Charlton had told her, when she found her door, it was awful what happened to her. Eliot is eager to hear about a door.

In the Neitherlands, Alice and Christopher Plover have gotten to the fountains outside the Library, and use Christopher's World Book to find the right fountain to get to the proper world for Christopher. As they go, Christopher's conversation with Alice annoys her enough to have her use her light-shifting magic to alter the Book, so it identifies the wrong fountain.

Eliot tells Charlton he doesn't need to escape the Monster, so much as he needs one moment to tell his friends he's alive. Charlton says the door is hidden deep in some memory he has; for Charlton it was his childhood bedroom, for Eliot it will be in some memory that is so awful Eliot avoids it. Eliot drags Charlton for a trip through Eliot's bad memories.

Alice and Christopher get to a fountain marked with a pile of books as its symbol, which Christopher doesn't recognize, but Alice insists is the right one. It has a locked cover; they unlock and remove the cover; Alice finds a rope, ties it, and tosses one end in, so if things aren't right, Christopher can find his way back. Christopher climbs into the fountain. Alice unties the rope and tosses it into the fountain. (We saw this fountain symbol in "Ramifications"; it's the entrance to the Poison Room.)

In Fillory, Margo is all set to go find her birthright box, and asks Penny-23 to give her a lift there. He's busy helping Julia with her goddess status, even though Margo says he just doing so to score points with Julia. This doesn't help: Penny-23 Travels away. Then Fen finds Margo and asks, where's Eliot? Margo tells her.

At the apartment in Manhattan, Julia and Shoshana are doing rituals to try to figure out what's up with Julia, when Penny-23 appears. Penny-23 is all set to help out, but Shoshana says she is all the help Julia needs, she's setting herself up as Julia's number one disciple, so he might as well go away. He Travels away.

Shoshana is ready to do some spell on Julia, and asks if there are any cloaking spells on her. When Julia says there is a big cloaking spell, Shoshana waves her hands and removes it before Julia has the chance to say she needs the cloaking spell to be safe. Shoshana says oops, she'll restore it... and as she does so, she vanishes, and in her place is the goddess Iris. When we saw Iris before, she was all gushing to Julia about how great it was that Julia was a goddess too; now, she's a bundle of annoyance that Julia and her friends let loose the Monster who is killing gods. She tells Julia she's the worst of both worlds, helpless human and immortal goddess. She gives Julia a black stone from Blackspire, those stones are what makes Blackspire able to contain gods; the blood from that stone can hold the Monster in place for a few minutes, enough for the gods to get him back into Blackspire. Julia needs to do that, or Iris will destroy her. She vanishes, and Shoshana reappears, pleased that the cloaking spell is back.

In Fillory, Fen has been crying for hours, and is amazed that Margo hasn't been crying for Eliot as well. Margo says she's been busy. Rafe walks in, and there's something wrong with Her Slowness Abigail: she hasn't spoken to him all day. Rafe is near tears at that, so Fen comforts him, but Margo says she's going off to find her birthright box.

Quentin has joined Julia in the apartment, and they work on spells to extract blood from the stone, they don't really know how, but the threats Iris made say they have to do this. Julia does note that, if this plan with the stone-blood works, the Monster will be stuck in Castle Blackspire again, in Eliot's body. Quentin passes on the word from the Monster that Eliot is dead, so they should do what they can do now.

Penny-23 is sitting on a park bench somewhere, when a young man sits down beside him, and stabs him with a hypodermic. Penny-23 collapses.

Eliot and Charlton are at what Eliot first thinks of as his most traumatic, repressed memory: the aftermath of when he first used magic, at age 14, to kill a fellow student who bullied him. He sees his childhood friend, Taylor, comfort him for a while. But looking around, they don't see a door, and Eliot thinks of another memory.

Now they are in a school gymnasium, and Eliot is one of several 12-year-old boys kicking another student, and it's Eliot's friend Taylor, and he's still ashamed of it. But there's still no door. Suddenly they hear strange sounds and are accosted by monstrous creatures, one of which attacks and kills the gym teacher in the memory. Eliot and Charlton run.

Quentin and Julia are working on the black rock, and have gotten one drop of blood from it; they need a lot more to fill the bottle they have. The Monster pops in, and they hide their work, while he shows them the oval stone he was trying to figure out. Before it was blank, but now, when he concentrates, it shows some symbols on it, and wants to know what they are. Quentin, Julia, and Shoshana suggest he take Julia and Shoshana to the Brakebills library, they should have resources to figure out the symbol. With a lot of secret looks and nods, they agree: this will leave Quentin alone in the apartment to get blood from the rock.

As Quentin is working, Alice shows up; Quentin doesn't want anything to do with her, after she turned them all over to the Library. She says the Library kept her a prisoner, but that doesn't change Quentin's feelings. She says she read Quentin's book, and that he dies in two days, and gives details of how it ends, and her idea is for him to give up on the black stone blood and just run. Quentin isn't giving up, if they don't do this, Iris will kill Julia. He lets Alice come help, with the idea of changing the book's history by getting the blood done in one day instead of two.

Julia and Shoshana search the Brakebills library, as the Monster sits around, bored. Shoshana finds a book with the right symbol in it, which Julia quickly grabs and keeps the Monster from noticing; she rips out of the book a page with what looks like a map of the human body.

Eliot and Charlton have gotten back to the "Cottage", and Eliot has made a blackboard full of his bad memories, any of them could have the door, or monsters. Eliot decides he needs some help to battle monsters: he calls into existence his memories of Quentin, Fen, and Margo, from memories of when each was particularly ready to fight.

They start going through Eliot's substantial list of embarassing memories (worst haircut; failed erections; sleeping with the wrong peoples' boyfriends; accidentally betraying his friends). In some memories, monsters appear, and one after another of his memory-spawned friends fights the monster so Eliot can go on to the next memory.

Alice finishes a spell on the black rock, yielding a steady flow of black blood, enough to fill the bottle. Quentin texts Julia: he has the blood, Julia should get the Monster to the park where they can dump the blood on him. Alice convinces him to let her continue helping, she's trying to make up for what she did to him and the others, and he's not really buying it. They agree that she can help for now, but then she'll use her World Book to find some other place where she is better suited for, and go there.

In Whitespire, Margo has obtained her birthright box, and goes to Fen, looking for the palace locksmith. Fen sends her to the carpenters. While the carpenter works on the box, Rafe joins them to say all of the talking animals of the kingdom seem to have lost their voices. Then the box gets opened, and inside is a live lizard. If things were normal in Fillory, the lizard would tell Margo her birthright, but ... all the talking animals have gone silent. Margo goes for a nap.

Eliot and Charlton are back at the Cottage to check memories off the list, and Eliot asks Charlton where he found his door. It was the memory of the day Charlton left home, and Eliot realizes it's probably the memory he fears most. Eliot has an idea.

Only Eliot is in the memory of Eliot and Quentin in Whitespire, in the scene at the end of "A Life in the Day", where, for a moment, Eliot and Quentin remember the fifty years they lived together in the alternate timeline.

In the real world, Quentin and Alice prepare to distract the Monster and dump the blood on him.

In memory-Whitespire, memory-Quentin is musing on the half-century of life he shared together with Eliot, and wonders: what if we tried it now, for real in this timeline? They love each other, and those years in the other time showed how they could keep their love going a long time. Real-Eliot looks on sadly as memory-Eliot pours cold water on Quentin's offer, a relationship between them is not who each of them really is. What's sad is that, memory-Eliot and real-Eliot both know, memory-Eliot's lying.

In the park, the Monster, Julia, and Shoshana appear, and Quentin waves them over to him, as Alice hides, ready to dump the blood of the Monster.

Real-Eliot complains to the unhearing memory-Eliot: someone good and true loves you, and he went out on a limb, and it was a moment that truly mattered, and you just snuffed it out. And then Eliot kisses memory-Quentin.

The Monster and Julia have reached Quentin. Alice is behind them, unnoticed.

In memory-Whitespire, Eliot hears a clank and a squeak, and there's suddenly a door there. Eliot walks over to it...

And the Monster wobbles and for a moment is unsteady on his feet. He announces "Quentin! It's me, it's Eliot!" Quentin doesn't believe him. Eliot tries a few more phrases from the Quentin-Eliot talk, like "fifty years, who get proof of a concept like that", and Quentin is starting to get the idea and react, when Alice stands up and dumps the bottle of black blood onto Eliot. Well, she tries, but Quentin sees her starting, so he grabs Eliot and shields him as he pulls him to the ground, so the blood mostly spills onto Quentin's back. The Monster vanishes.

Eliot walks in the door of the Cottage, and tells Charlton, he hopes it worked.

In the park, Quentin and Alice look around, and Iris appears, enraged that they messed up the deal with the blood. She waves her hand towards Julia, and Shoshana jumps in her way, taking the death spell Iris sent; she dies. Then the Monster pops back into existence, it's not Eliot, and he's pleased to see Iris as he reaches into her body to noisily and messily pull another glowing orb from her, killing her. The Monster turns to the others and starts to complain that they tried to trick him, and Quentin quickly shifts gears and starts talking about how all that just happened was Quentin and Julia helping the Monster catch Iris, they did a clever plan and it worked, the Monster should be pleased. To back this up, Julia pulls out the page she ripped out of the library book, and gives it to the Monster: it explains how these orbs are really the building blocks to a magical body, perhaps the Monster's real body, and the symbols on the orbs say which block each one is. The Monster vanishes. Quentin tells Julia: Eliot's alive.

Back at the apartment, Alice does the spell on the World Book to find the "right" place for her. She tries to convince Quentin and Julia that she should stay around. she could help deal with the Monster. Quentin says saving his life isn't enough, he loved her, but he can't trust her now. He closes the book and puts it in front of her. She picks up the book and leaves.

Cast

Main Cast:

Guest Stars:

Appearances

Locations

Events

Items

Organizations

Sentient Species

Creatures

Mentioned

References

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