Title: The Reveal
Summary: Rewrite of the dialogue in the carriage scene and the Miquelon scene from the original musical (SP1), because I refuse to believe that Armand and Marguerite are both so stupid as to just accidentally slip up and reveal the Pimpernel's identity. Percy/Marguerite.
A/N: I finally got hold of a video of SP1 (after 22 years!) and watched it recently! This story is based on the musical, but I was also influenced by the book and the 1982 movie.
(In the carriage)
"Armand?! Armand, what's happening?!" Marguerite called out.
"He was taking the wrong road!"
"The driver doesn't know the route?"
"Of course not! No one knows but me."
"No one but you? Now that's where you're wrong, Armand."
"What? What are you talking about, Marguerite?"
"Did you really think I was foolish enough to come back to France all by myself, Armand?"
"It was my idea. But Percy approved."
"P-Percy?" he stammered.
"Yes, Percy. Your leader. Your 'chief.'"
"Then… you know?!"
"Yes, I know. I know everything, Armand."
"But how? How did you find out?"
"At Lord Grenville's ball, Chauvelin told me you'd been arrested for conspiracy against the French government, that you were a member of the League of the Scarlet Pimpernel… and if I did not help him discover the identity of the Pimpernel, you would be guillotined."
"What? He tried to blackmail you into helping him? But surely you refused!"
"How could I refuse, when your life was at stake?!"
"But how did he even expect you to find out who the Pimpernel is?"
"His soldiers heard you call out the names 'Farleigh' and 'Ozzy,' before they arrested you. I pleaded with Farleigh to arrange a meeting with the Pimpernel for me, out on the footbridge at one o'clock. And then I told Chauvelin."
"You what?!" Armand exclaimed, aghast. "How could you, Marguerite?!"
"I did it to save you, Armand! What choice did I have?!"
"You should have trusted the Pimpernel to rescue me! He would never abandon one of his own men!"
"I couldn't be sure of that! I did what I had to do."
"I cannot believe you betrayed him like that, Marguerite. Have you no conscience?"
"Of course I do! That is why I went out there early to warn the Pimpernel. But he wasn't there. Instead, I met Percy out on the footbridge. It was only after he left that the Pimpernel spoke to me, out of the darkness, from behind me, where I could not see him. I confessed to him all that I had done, and why. And I begged him to save you."
"That is what you should have done all along – without telling Chauvelin!"
"He already knew I had told Chauvelin. And he wasn't afraid. He told me…"
She paused, giving him a meaningful look.
"He told me to go and find my husband… my husband – who loves me."
"Of course he loves you. How could you ever have doubted it?"
"I've had many reasons to doubt it, these past few months. But I did as he said. I went inside to look for Percy."
"As you should!"
"But he was nowhere to be found. And then I started to wonder. How did you happen to meet the Scarlet Pimpernel? For it would have to be someone close by you, someone you could meet with easily. And if Ozzy and Farleigh – two of my husband's closest friends – were also in his band, surely I must know him as well. Then all of the pieces started to fall into place…"
He groaned. "I should have known you'd figure it out…"
"I had to be sure. I went back outside. When I arrived, Percy was still on the bridge, with Chauvelin. And then, right after Chauvelin left… I overheard Percy giving orders to his men."
"So you confronted him and he told you everything?"
"Yes," she confirmed with an elegant nod.
"But how could he let you come back to France? It's too dangerous!"
Marguerite shook her head airily. "You worry too much, Armand. Have you lost faith in the Scarlet Pimpernel?"
"Of course not! But –"
"And have you forgotten that I am an actress?"
"One of the finest in all of Europe," he said loyally.
"Then you understand why. They needed my help to find out where you were, since you were not being held in the prison. And they needed me to distract Chauvelin. To make him think he still had the upper hand."
"So…" Armand said slowly. "Then Chauvelin still doesn't know?"
"No. He does not even suspect. But he will soon find out. And then he will regret ever trying to match wits with the Scarlet Pimpernel!"
(At the harbor at Miquelon)
The blood thundered in Chauvelin's veins.
At last! He would soon have the Scarlet Pimpernel in his clutches. This time he could not fail. Already his soldiers were hot on his heels on the road to Calais.
There was no way the Pimpernel would escape this time!
In the meantime, he would have the satisfaction of watching Marguerite lose her head.
"Grappin, to the guillotine!" Chauvelin ordered.
"No!" Marguerite screamed as Grappin lumbered towards her menacingly.
"Tell me, Lady Blakeney," Grappin rasped, "what do you prefer: the terror of the guillotine… or the rapture of a kiss?"
Chauvelin gaped, stunned, as Marguerite suddenly threw her arms around Grappin and kissed him passionately with all her might.
"Why, a kiss, of course!" she proclaimed rather breathlessly when they finally separated.
"What the hell...?!" Chauvelin roared. "Seize her, Grappin –!"
"Ah!" Grappin cackled. "So sorry to disappoint you, Citizen Chauvelin! But there is no Grappin! He does not exist. And he never has!"
Chauvelin stared uncomprehendingly as the man in front of him ostentatiously threw off his cloak to reveal his true identity…
Blakeney! The Scarlet Pimpernel!
Disguised as Grappin, the Belgian spy, all this time! Right under his nose, where he never would have guessed.
It all made sense now. The Pimpernel was no phantom who knew his every move before he made it. Grappin had been feeding him false information, manipulating him every step of the way.
Chauvelin shook his head slowly. It couldn't be!
But Marguerite and Blakeney were still holding on to each other tightly, beaming radiantly.
There was no mistaking the elation and the smug triumph on their faces.
They were mocking him.
They were mocking him!
And it finally registered in his mind…
Then she'd known. She'd known all along.
They'd planned all this together!
The forged note, this rendezvous at Miquelon…
He should have guessed! Marguerite wasn't stupid. She wouldn't have just given away the Pimpernel's identity by screaming her husband's name like a hysterical fool, telling him to run for his life.
She wouldn't have chained herself for life to a foppish nitwit like Blakeney. He'd only pretended to be a vain, useless simpleton. When all along he'd been the cunning and elusive Pimpernel…
And they'd staged this entire ridiculous farce to throw him off the scent. To humiliate him in front of all his soldiers!
Blinded by rage, he grabbed his sword…