Last episode, Vox Machina reunited in Westruun. Grog claimed another Vestige of Divergence, the Titanstone Knuckles, and with them the respect of the Herd of Storms. He left their leadership to his cousin Zanror. Having secured the Herd’s help to kill Umbrasyl, they started building a trap. Scanlan’s new friend Kaylie revealed that she’s his daughter, leaving him in quite a bind as the episode ended. Will Scanlan get her to come around, and will Vox Machina and the Herd be able to bring down the Hope Devourer? Read on for a recap of episode 11, “Belly of the Beast” to find out!
It’s Easier to Run
We start where we left off, with Scanlan in the throes of horror, realizing that he attempted to sleep with his daughter. He didn’t know who she was, but the shock and trauma are understandable! After venting about how terrible a father Scanlan has been, Kaylie announces that she won’t kill him. Instead, she uses a magical sword that locks in position to pin him to the bed and leaves him there, still bound by the wrists. He’s got to learn not to run from his mistakes!
Downstairs, the Herd of Storms and the rest of Vox Machina are partying after Grog’s defeat of Kevak. Vex goes to deliver a drink to her brother but finds only his retreating back. She watches as he heads for the door. The reason for Vax’s recent distance is clearer than ever as he steps outside of the bar. He has a vision of the bodies from the fight rising, the souls of the dead reaching out to him. Clearly, he’s got some stuff to work out with the Matron of Ravens.
Vax seeks a quiet balcony, where he finds Scanlan — notably not partying after extracting himself from the ropes Kaylie left him. The two talk about the moments when your life changes and not knowing what to do next. Scanlan manages to come up with some advice that’s valuable for them both.
“You don’t get to choose your part in the play, but a true performer commits anyway.”
It’s time to check in with the baddies. Inside a distant mountain, a flaming vision of Thordak demands an update from Umbrasyl. Umbrasyl is still focused on the vestiges, telling Thordak how close he is to getting more of them. The Cinder King isn’t pleased, warning Umbrasyl not to get too distracted looking for them — he wants his gold! As Umbrasyl angrily swipes the projection of Thordak away, Anna Ripley steps out of the shadows to remind him of their deal. He gets power, she gets resources.
Path of Destiny
The next morning, Scanlan overhears Kaylie telling Dr. Drenzel that she can’t wait to leave. He attempts to request some priestly advice from Pike, but totally bungles the opener with the worst metaphor ever: “Say you just found out you had a…puppy, and you try to sleep with that puppy.” Poor Pike. Metaphor or not, she’s never recovering from that conversation.
Grog calls the Herd to order so they can plan out their attack on Umbrasyl. Percy begins to lay out his trap plans, to confused faces and groans from the goliaths. As he talks on, undeterred, Vex notices her twin leaving again.
Vax walks through the city to an eerie, almost-ruined temple. He pauses outside, calling for Vex to come out — he heard her following him four blocks back. Vex immediately tells him not to flatter himself, she wasn’t the one making all that racket. Sheepishly, Keyleth steps out. Vax admits to them that the Matron of Ravens is in his head, calling. He convinces them to stay behind and, in a sad and heartwarming callback, Vex tells him to not go far from her. As soon as Vax leaves, Keyleth begins to fret. Vex calls Keyleth out on her feelings for Vax and encourages her not to let him get away.
Inside the temple, silent followers of the Raven Queen steer Vax toward a pool of blood. Pushing through his fear, Vax walks into the pool. He sinks, running out of air and unable to get to the surface. When he gives in and relaxes, he opens his eyes to a vision of the Matron of Ravens. Strings of fate flow from him and around him, but she tells Vax they are not puppet strings. They connect to destiny. She must protect the sanctity between life and death, and Vax’s charge is to — in a sense — shepherd souls to their new purpose. The Matron of Ravens presses her lips to Vax’s forehead, and he wakes in the pool.
“There is much to fear, but not death. For it gives meaning to life.”
The Matron of Ravens
Vex and Keyleth are horrified to see Vax coated in red, but he seems calmer. He has new purpose and knows that the path they’re on is the right one.
Back at the bar, Grog simplifies the explanation of Percy’s trap for the Goliaths: “You…dig here.” Much happier with that, they head out. Zanror gives Grog a new weapon — Kevdak’s Bloodaxe. After checking it doesn’t talk (can’t blame the guy, after Craven Edge) he accepts it.
Scanlan runs after Kaylie as she’s leaving, telling her that he can change. She isn’t swayed, but at least tells him where she’s headed. He wants to try and be the dad that she wanted him to be. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. Kaylie tells him that after all the wrong he’s done, he’d have to do a hell of a lot right. He tries to give her back her magic sword, but she wants nothing from him.
Going In Raw
With the trap assembled, Vox Machina and the Herd light the signal fire. When Umbrasyl lands he notices the pressure plate, but Vex manages to trip it anyway. Roped by the herd, blasted by Scanlan, and smited by Pike, Umbrasyl stays down—for a moment—as Vex and Percy fire at him. But with a determined flap of his wings, he’s free. And also invisible. They did not account for that.
Vex uses Fenthras to make Umbrasyl visible again. Scanlan comes up with a plan, one that horrifies Vax but he agrees to anyway — they’re going inside the dragon. No, not the mouth way. The other way. Vax uses the speed from his Deathwalker’s Ward with a somewhat medical looking formation of Scanlan’s hand spell and — to put it politely — rams them both inside. Scanlan has found a path to victory through a butthole, and they’re going to give Umbrasyl one hell of a stomachache by anchoring Kaylee’s magical, immovable sword inside his gut.
For a moment it works, and Umbrasyl is pinned to the ground again. Vox Machina attacks, giving it all they have. Vex slingshots Grog into a mega punch with his vestige, and he sinks the Bloodaxe into Umbrasyl’s back. The dragon screams in pain and rage, but they underestimated him. Furious, the dragon rips itself off the sword and takes flight — with Grog clinging on for dear life, and Vax and Scanlan still inside.
Don’t forget to check back soon for a recap of the season finale, “The Hope Devourer.”