The promo for Season 4, Episode 13 of History Channel's Vikings reveals a lot about "Two Journeys." After leaving viewers with a major cliffhanger in Episode 12, the promo readily relieves fans of any fears that Ragnar (Travis Fimmel) and his son, Ivar (Alex Høgh Andersen), fatally succumbed to their boat capsizing.
In the promo, it appears that King Ecbert's son Aethelwulf is the one who discovers the boat's debris and leads the charge to find Ragnar. King Ecbert also confirms Ragnar's return, and a showdown between the two men appears to be imminent. Ragnar is then shown coaching his son on how they will handle going into town.
The promo also gives viewers their first glimpse of Rollo (Clive Standen) in Part 2 of Season 4. Bjorn (Alexander Ludwig) is seen asking his uncle for safe passage on his journey to Rome. It is a deal Rollo says he will only agree to if he can also come along.
Rollo is then shown violently grabbing his wife Gisla, by the neck. The shocking sight is a vast departure from where Vikings left Rollo and Gisla's relationship in Part 1 of Season 4. The last time Vikings fans had seen them, Gisla was lovingly welcoming her husband home from his victorious battle against the Vikings, as she heralded his triumphant return to all of Frankia.
Lagertha vs. Aslaug
Finally, the confrontation Vikings fans have been waiting for ever since Season 2 is teased. Lagertha (Kathryn Winnick) versus Aslaug (Alyssa Sutherland). In the previous episode, Ragnar's former wife and his current one shared a frosty interaction. They had come together to bid their sons a fond farewell on their joint trip.
After Aslaug performed a ritual to bless their send-off, she was left in an incoherent state. Or was she? Believing she was under the influence, Lagertha seized the opportunity to whisper that she has never forgiven Aslaug for stealing her life. Aslaug's darting eyes appeared to focus for a split-second after Lagertha walked away.
In the promo for Episode 13, Lagertha is seen fulfilling her threat as she apparently preps her takeover of Kattegat. In an ominous bit of dialogue, a voice asks Lagertha what she will do about Ragnar's sons. What will she do?
All of Ragnar's sons are indefatigably loyal to their mother and would more than likely fight to the death to protect her. Is Lagertha willing to shed the blood of her son's brothers to take back her realm?
The tagline for Part 2 of Season 4 is "Who will fall?" Could it be one of Ragnar's sons? It is possible.
Warning: Possible spoilers for Vikings Season 4, Part 2 ahead.
Given the trajectory of history, Ragnar is the most likely to "fall" this season. Britannica's entry on the legend tells us that Ragnar Lothbrok is said to have been captured by the King of Northumbria and executed by being tossed into a snake pit.
Having already made his way back to England and with seven episodes left after Episode 13 airs, Ragnar's death looms heavy. Adding to the foreboding is that Episode 15 is titled "All His Angels," a possible allusion to death coming for Ragnar.
Episode 18's title ("Revenge") also hints at Ragnar's demise. According to legend, Ragnar's sons unite to avenge their father, a saga in its own right, and a possible hint of where Vikings is headed.
The series' major time leaps have zoomed past years of character's lives. Is Vikings doing so, to set-up for this other famous story in Viking lore?
One more question remains, will Ragnar meet his supposed son, Magnus, before he meets his end? Magnus is supposedly the result of the affair Ragnar had with Queen Kwenthrith, in Vikings Season 3. Only time will tell.
Episode 13 of Vikings Season 4 airs Wednesday, December 14th at 9/8c on HISTORY.
[Featured Image by HISTORY]