The rebels have taken over of the city of Sinuessa and formed an alliance with the Cilician pirates
to provide them with
food. Crixus is eager to leave the city and attack the Romans, but Spartacus wants first to strengthen and train his people.
Heraclio, leader of the pirates, has returned from a raid which has produced much wine but little food.
Meanwhile, escaped slaves are flocking to the city to join the rebellion. There will be many more mouths to feed.
Many rebels disagree with Spartacus' decision to keep the Roman prisoners alive: Crixus: "We should not
be wasting what little food we have on fucking Romans!" / Spartacus: "You know my mind upon subject". /
Naevia: "I stand with Crixus towards it!" / Spartacus: "Given Laeta my word; it will not be broken!"
A newcomer brings news that Crassus' army has camped but half-day's march away. Why have they not advanced and attacked?
The discussion is interrupted by a more immediate problem - Romans infiltrating with the slaves!
Despite his particularly spirited assistance against the Romans, this newcomer is challenged to prove he
is a slave. Caesar's preparation for such an event reassures the rebels, and he is allowed to stay.
A meeting of the leaders - Gannicus, Crixus, Spartacus, Agron. They question why Crassus' tried to infiltrate
with such a small force; what is he up to? Their discussion reveals much disagreement with Spartacus' policies,
but the others still affirm their loyalty to him. He announces Crixus as his successor if anything happens to him.
Spartacus insists that the newcomers' fighting skills be tested; anyone who is too good is
suspect. Gannicus calls out Caesar, who fights well but ultimately allows himself to be defeated.
Sibyl, as always, watches Gannicus' every move.
Nemetes, on the other hand, is keeping a close eye on Caesar. He senses in him a potential ally to help him gain the
money and power he seeks. Caesar: "A city such as this holds great opportunity, for those brave enough to seize it".
Spartacus asks Laeta about Crassus. She relates a story of Crassus gaining advantage in a business deal by sending a
false message to a trading partner; Spartacus suspects he too has been allowed to intercept a false message from Crassus.
Back in the Roman camp, Crassus is furious that Tiberius disobeyed a direct command by engaging with the rebels, and even
more furious that his troops retreated from them. He announces a brutal punishment for the fleeing troops: Decimation.
Tiberius stains five stones. The five unlucky soldiers who draw the white
are to be killed by their comrades in fulfillment of decimation.
Tiberius to Sabinus: "You do not deserve to be placed at risk among cowards. I will talk to my father and beg your
removal from decimation". / Sabinus: "The act would only diminish you in his eyes, a thing I would never allow". /
Tiberius, upending the table in frustration: "You stand most honorable in his legions, and this is fucking reward!"
Nemetes and Caesar continue to explore their common ground. Caesar: "I have heard rumor that Spartacus stands
a god among his people". / Nemetes: "I have imperilled life for his cause many times - at Vesuvius, and Calais, and
battles far too numerous in accounting, even in the taking of this fucking city - only to witness remainder of enemy
spared within its walls, and coin honestly gained stripped from hand to bargain with the fucking Cilicians!"
Out on the street, Laeta and Sibyl collide at a blind corner, and Laeta's hidden stash of bread tumbles to the ground.
Despite Laeta's threat, Sibyl tells Gannicus her suspicions about Laeta at the first opportunity.
Crassus, meanwhile, is enjoying life in the Roman camp - away from his wife. Kore speaks to him about Tiberius: "He has fought
and bled for the glory of Rome, for his imperator. Does he not deserve to be treated as any other beneath your command?"
Back in Sinuessa, Heraclio argues against keeping the Romans alive: "Do you think they would treat your people
with such kindness?" / Spartacus: "We are not Romans. Nor shall we become them by acts of unnecessary
cruelty." / Heraclio laughs: "This fucking man! I will provide you with what I can. To feed, eh, lofty ideals".
Crixus seeks out Nemetes, finds him drinking with Caesar, and slams him against a wall when he fails to obey a command.
Their conversation reveals that Nemetes is undercover, supposedly checking out Caesar. But what is he really up to?
Nemetes sets a final test for Caesar: He presents him with a Roman woman to violate, continuing the torture she
has endured from Nemetes and his friends. When Caesar tells her he is a Roman and rescuers will soon arrive, she is
not willing to wait, telling him, "Free me". When Caesar emerges carrying her dead body, Nemetes is convinced.
In the Roman camp, Crassus assembles his men for decimation: "Those who stand before me turned from field of
battle. Retreated from the rebel Spartacus and his army of slaves, fearing them more than their own commander.
An error, this night, I shall see corrected. And in the lesson, lay fear upon proper name: Marcus Licinius Crassus".
Tiberius approaches his father to entreat on behalf of Sabinus, but Crassus has heeded Kore's words: "I have too long
considered you a child, Tiberius. Apologies. You stand a soldier now. You deserve to be treated as any other. Join your men".
The men each draw a stone from the bag. Tiberius draws well - his stone is dark! Sabinus isn't as
lucky. The white stone means he is to be beaten to death by his fellow soldiers - Tiberius included.
Back in Sinuessa, Laeta gives the bundle of bread to the Romans she is hiding beneath the floor of the stable.
But Gannicus, Saxa and Sibyl catch her in the act - and find the hidden Romans.
When Gannicus learns that it was Laeta - not his friend Attius - who hid the Romans, he
angrily goes to confront Naevia, who had justified killing Attius by saying he had hidden them.
Nemetes emerges into the training yard carrying Fabia's body, claiming she
had attacked him and would have killed him if it hadn't been for Caesar.
Caesar goes along with the story, and uses it to further enrage the crowd: "You spare their lives. And this is fucking gratitude!"
Gannicus arrives on the scene, accusing Naevia of killing Attius without cause.
When Crixus defends her, he and Gannicus come to blows.
Nemetes and Caesar continue to agitate the crowd to kill the Roman prisoners. At first Crixus defends
Spartacus' decision to keep them alive, but finally he gives in to his own
thirst for vengeance: "For every turn
around neck, and every lash upon back, take Roman blood as payment. And let us see this city truly ours!"
Back at the Roman camp, Tiberius, club in hand, faces Sabinus: "I will
not do this". / Sabinus: "You shall do as commanded. As all soldiers must".
Tiberius watches as Sabinus endures the first blows from other soldiers.
Finally, with an anguished shout, he joins them.
There is shouting in Sinuessa as well, as the rebels slaughter Roman prisoners.
Young and old, male and female - no one is spared.
Caesar has accomplished his goal of creating dissent among the rebels,
the cost of many Roman lives. He seems to bemoan the loss.
As does Crassus.
Unaware of the carnage taking place in other parts of the city, Spartacus plots a way forward with Heraclio.
But they are interrupted by Nasir: "Spartacus! Crixus and the others have gone mad. They're killimg the Romans!"
Saxa is trying to move Laeta to safety, but the marauding rebels find them. Crixus: "The aedile's wife!"
Crixus pushes Laeta to hands and knees . . .
and is about to sever her head . . .
when Spartacus' blade stops his.
Spartacus: "You will regain sense. Or fall where you stand". / Crixus: "It is you who has lost sense".
Naevia: "She is the one who helped these Roman shits slip bond. And smiles at you through fucking lies".
Spartacus: "This is return for the mercy I grant you". / Laeta: "Mercy! You robbed me of my husband. Your people
slaughtered thousands within my city. And I now stand condemned for trying to save but a handful from such cruelty?"
Crixus: "Take her life, brother. And in the act, let us become as one again". /
Spartacus: "A thing deserved. And I will not see us become the very thing we fight against".
When Spartacus questions the wisdom of having named Crixus second in command, Crixus must be restrained from attacking
him. Spartacus, to all those gathered: "Make further attempt against my will, follow those who are struck down this night".
Naevia: "Spartacus has helped us more than anyone. Yet I now doubt the path
he travels". / Crixus: "Then perhaps the time has come to forge our own".
Caesar, meanwhile, seems quite pleased with the outcome of the day's events.