"Maybe some legends are true" - Rachel MacLeod
A chance sighting of a Celtic bracelet leads Duncan MacLeod back to his homeland, to relive the memories of his exile from Glenfinnan and to face the man who killed his father for a second time. Legend has it that four hundred years before, Duncan MacLeod came back from the dead to claim his father's sword, killed Kanwulf the Viking and stopped the slaughter in the glens. Now legend mixes with reality as the Viking returns to find the axe that Duncan took from him and the Highlander comes home to claim his right of vengeance in the only "Highlander" episode which had scenes actually filmed in Scotland. All opinions expressed here are my own, as is the retelling of the storyline.
Written by David Tynan
|Duncan MacLeod||Adrian Paul|
|Joe Dawson||Jim Byrnes|
|Rachel MacLeod||Kristen Minter|
|Ian MacLeod||Matthew Walker|
|Debra Campbell||Laurie Holden|
With Kalas dead, life returned to normal for Duncan MacLeod, which meant returning to the trade in antiques. Attending a sale hosted by his friend, George Leland, Duncan spots a silver Celtic bracelet which he buys without worrying about the price. Before he leaves, Leland tells him it came in a bulk shipment from Scotland, but he doesn't know where. Duncan does - his birthplace, Glenfinnan on the shores of Loch Shiel. Taking the bracelet, the Highlander returns home, seemingly another anonymous tourist walking the glens. Arriving in Glenfinnan, he visits the graves of his parents, but his thoughts are interrupted by a local woman, who mistakenly thinks he intended to camp there. She introduces herself as Rachel MacLeod and tells him that there is a burial taking place. Outsiders are not welcome.
Duncan leaves the graveyard and makes his way into town, eventually seeking a room for the night at the Lenui Inn. The landlady is Rachel MacLeod and she is quite sarcastic towards "the clansman", believing Duncan to be a tourist searching for his Highland roots. Her sarcasm changes to hostility when she sees him fingering the bracelet. She tells him here have been many graves robbed recently and, although he bought it in Paris, she cannot avoid believing he has come looking for more souvenirs. She gives him a room and Duncan is surprised to find that another guest is Joe Dawson. Joe points out that, as Duncan's Watcher, he is supposed to know where he is, especially when he comes home after 250 years.
Duncan is in no mood to share his thoughts with the Watcher, especially when he sees his father's sword hanging in the inn. The following day, Duncan leaves early and Joe is content to stay at the inn, listening to the locals. An old man comes in and tells the room that Kevin McSwain, a local man, has been found on the moors, murdered. Shock turns to laughter as the old man declares it to be a sign that Kanwulf has returned. Rachel tells Joe that Kanwulf is a local legend, a Viking who terrorised the country around for 800 years. The Watcher isn't so sure about it being a legend when he hears the next part - that Kanwulf was killed by a MacLeod who came back from the dead. Joe goes to find Duncan, who is riding around the countryside, trying to get his bearings. Joe asks him what he's looking for and finally gets an answer. A grave.
Before he died the first time, Duncan was in love with Debra Campbell, the daughter of a neighbouring clan chief. She was betrothed to his cousin Robert and, rather than stay and see the woman he loved but could not have every morning, he decided to leave. He gave her that bracelet to remember him by, but Robert would have none of it. When Debra refused to give it back to Duncan, Robert challenged him. Duncan would have walked away, but his father insisted he accept the challenge. They fought and Robert's rage drove Duncan to kill him. Filled with guilt at killing his cousin, Duncan refused to marry Debra until she threatened to kill herself by throwing herself from a cliff Unable to bear the thought, Duncan agreed to marry her, but watched in horror as the cliff edge crumbled beneath her feet. Her death ruled a suicide, he had to bury her on unconsecrated ground.
Joe returns to Glenfinnan, leaving Duncan to his search for her grave. The Highlander finds Debra's grave and buries the bracelet with her, where he placed it centuries before. Rachel sees him from a distance and, seeing dirt on his hands, assumes that he has been grave robbing. She calls the police, who search Duncan's room at the Inn. They find no artefacts, but do find his sword, which is taken to Edinburgh for testing. As Joe waits with him, Duncan tells him about his father's sword. It should have been his, but after he became Immortal, he was banished. Months later, he heard of an attack on Glenfinnan and returned home to find his father dead. He took his father's sword and pursued the raiders, who scattered before the "ghost" of Duncan MacLeod. He found their leader, Kanwulf, as a strange sensation overtook him. Later, he would realise that Kanwulf was Immortal. He fought with him and killed him, but didn't take his head. Believing Kanwulf dead, he took the Viking's axe, so as to send him weaponless to Valhalla.
Rachel and the police go to Debra Campbell's grave, along with the local priest, Father Laird. When they find that Duncan came to bury the bracelet with Debra, Rachel tells the priest about Duncan and the legend that Debra Campbell killed herself for love of Duncan MacLeod, who came back from the dead to claim his father's sword and kill Kanwulf. The priest says he like to meet Duncan and, when she goes back to the inn, Rachel passes the message on. Duncan goes to the church and is stunned to find that Father Laird is Kanwulf, who murdered the real priest and took his identity. Kanwulf is behind the grave desecrations, as he wants his axe back. And now, as Duncan knows where it is, he can give it him back or the killings continue. Duncan buried the axe in his father's grave and that night he goes to face Kanwulf, taking his father's sword from the inn. The two Immortals meet and Duncan returns the axe, but tells Kanwulf it's not so easy to keep it. They fight and Duncan avenges his father. As dawn breaks, Duncan returns the sword to a wondering Rachel, who cannot help but wonder that, maybe, some legends are true. He doesn't offer her an explanation, but takes one last look at Loch Shiel before deciding that it's better just to disappear.