The story of the Pied Piper has been told many times by parents to frighten their children to behave. “If you don’t behave the Piper is going to come and take you away.” Taken from an old German folktale, the Pied Piper legend is used in this episode as an explanation to why a 10 year old girl, Sara Lancaster, is missing from her home. The Amber Alert sends Abbie and Ichabod to the parent’s home. Beth Lancaster, who is the mother of the 10 year old missing girl, was Abbie’s case worker when she and Jenny was ward of the state. This is personal for her, because Beth helped her when she was lost.
While searching the home of the Lancaster’s, Ichabod finds old antique items belonging to Daniel Forbes Lancaster. His feeling toward Daniel is pretty obvious when Abbie asks Ichabod why he dislikes him. Ichabod explains to Abbie that Daniel didn’t join the Patriots until later in the war, when Daniel realizes that the British were losing. By that time, his information wasn’t useful to Washington.
As Ichabod is explaining to Abbie about the Lancaster history, she stumbles upon a bone on the ground. It’s a human bone that is fashioned to be a flute. Ichabod picks it up and plays. Abbie is then put in a trance and walks out further into the woods. Ichabod suddenly realizes that something is wrong with her and wakes her up. Dazed and confused, Abbie believes that this flute may have lured the girl Sara out here. They need to research more about this flute and its history. While researching any information about it, Ichabod has come to realize this bone flute is used by a terrible powerful and deadly mercenary known as the Pied Piper. A story was told back in colonial times that a garrison of British soldiers was killed by one man with lethal skills with a special flute. Realizing that Sara is still missing, Abbie and Ichabod take advantage of the hypnotic flute and Abbie’s unusual tracking skills to locate the Piper’s lair and rescue Sara. Using modern technology, Abbie is able to download the hypnotic song onto her phone and wear earplugs so that only Abbie can hear it. Their plan begins to work until they find Nicholas Hawley injured on the way. Hawley claims he is there to track down a powerful artifact for a mysterious buyer, it is just pure luck that Abbie has what he wants. They make a deal, the flute for the assistance in finding the girl. Ichabod reluctantly agrees with this plan. They continue on and find the underground lair of the Piper. They also find Sara shackled up. The Piper is hiding back in the shadows waiting for the right time to attack. He tries but is unsuccessful, because Hawley uses explosives to trap and bury the Piper. Abbie, Ichabod, Hawley escape with Sara. Hawley expects his payment. Abbie is just about to give it to him when she breaks the flute in two. She says that no one should have that much power. Hawley takes it anyway. The mother and daughter are reunited. However, Ichabod notices that the reaction by Beth, when Sara is found, confuses him. Normally, when a missing child is found, the parents are extremely overjoyed, but Ichabod did not see that in Beth.
Abbie tells Ichabod that Lancaster family is rumored to be cursed. She tells him that every generation a 10 year old Lancaster girl goes missing. This curse goes way back to the early 1800’s. Ichabod discovers that the British Garrison who were murdered by this mystery man, were having a celebration party at the Lancaster home. Daniel watches as the garrison were being very inappropriate to his daughters. Ichabod realizes it was Daniel who hired the Piper to take care of the garrison by any means necessary. After the Piper finished the job, Daniel deceived him, had him killed, and the cursed began that night. Because the Piper was given powers by a demon, we now find out that it was Moloch, the Lancasters had to offer their daughters when they turn ten years old to the Piper so that their other children would live.
Abbie and Ichabod have a dreadful thought that Beth would do something horrible in order to stop the Piper from killing her other children. They find Beth and Sara in the woods walking towards the lair. They get interrupted by the Piper, and a sword fight breaks out with Ichabod and the Piper. They fall into the underground lair and the fighting continues. Abbie is able to kill the Piper by stabbing him in the chest with his own bone flute. The curse is broken. It is a win for the good guys. However, Hawley is seen selling the broken bone flute to a middleman for the mysterious buyer. Little does Hawley know that the buyer is Henry who crushes the flute into dust.
Still at the Tarrytown Psyhiatric building, Irving is going over what Ichabod said to him earlier. He is seen reading the bible, Revelations to be more precise. He then gets a vision of him fighting and killing people for the Horseman of War. He calls Henry in to visit. He tells Henry that he is fired and that he can see right through him. Henry is not surprised, and calmly explains to him that his soul is his, when he signed that document with his blood at their initial meeting. Henry’s plan is still a mystery to me, but every episode we get to see him three steps head of everybody, and why not?…..he is of course, the Horseman of War.
This episode confronts every parent’s worst nightmare, with a Sleepy Hollow twist. The decisions we make for our children and the need to protect them outweighs the consequences of our actions. We protect our family anyway we can, but when it gets into a moral dilemma, what do we do? Every parent has the responsibility to keep their children safe, but where do we draw line. I’m not a parent, but I admire the ones who are.