- Summaries (3)
Prince Aethelwulf finds himself subject to the Vikings' battle master plan; Ecbert remains behind with a plan of his own.
There is a battle between Vikings and Saxons and Ivar's strategy works, forcing Aethelwulf and the survivors to retreat to Wessex. King Ecbert decides to stay behind and abdicate the throne and proclaiming his son Aethelwulf King of Wessex and Mercia. Bishop Edmund stays with Ecbert that says goodbye to his family. When the Vikings arrive, they find the place empty and King Ecbert lures them, offering lands to the Northmen at East Anglia. In return, he asks to choose the way he would die. Floki grieves the loss of Helga while Ragnar's sons have an argument with tragic consequences.
Ivar's strategy is a total success: Aethelwulf's Saxon army is utterly defeated and flees back to the Wessex and Mercia capital Winchester, where king Ecbert still decides to abdicate in his favor and prepares the royal family for his fate with bishop Edmund. As the triumphant Vikings seize Winchester, Ivar just demands utter bloody revenge, but Bjorn accepts instead 'high king' Ecbert's offer -in return for the right to die as he chooses, actually slitting his wrists in the grand bath- to grant them legal title to the kingdom of East Anglia, to realize Ragnar's dream of an agricultural Viking colony. Bjorn gets few volunteers from the Great Army to settle then for his own raids on the rich Mediterranean. Frustrated to be denied a blood-eagle executing of Ecbert, Ivar picks a fight with his weakling siblings which ends in bloodshed.
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