Season 3, Episode 4

The Game

After a railroad accident, Cullen and Elam forge deep into Indian territory to secure a new lumber source. Durant tells Louise a secret about Cullen.

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Full Recap

After a fire destroys the stock of wood pilings needed to continue work on the railroad, Cullen and Elam recruit “crazy” frontiersman Jimmy Two Squaws to guide them through Kiowa territory and help broker a trade for spruce trees. Jimmy says, the Kiowa kill strangers, often burning them alive. “Good thing you ain’t a stranger,” Cullen says. Jimmy agrees. Chief Red Bear is his father-in-law.

Durant greets Sean shortly after arriving in Hell on Wheels. Mickey questions why Durant has come while Cullen is gone. “I am just a stockholder checking in on his investment,” Durant says.

At the hotel, Durant offers to write a statement for the New York Tribune for Louise Ellison.

Eva allows Declan Toole into her tent to see the baby. Declan says, he lost his family to influenza: "I know a little about what you've been through."

At the Kiowa village, Jimmy is clubbed in the head and knocked off his horse. The Kiowa bind Cullen and Elam with rope. After Jimmy speaks with the Kiowa, Red Bear agrees to trade for his trees if Cullen and Elam win a game of stickball.

The Swede helps Ezra Dutson grab a bird’s nest from a tree. Ezra says, his father is a bishop who will be the most powerful man in Fort Smith. The Swede asks Ezra to tell more about his father.

Cullen and Elam compete against Red Bear's son and two other Kiowa in stickball. They’re given a third teammate – warrior-prisoner Little Raven -- to round out their team. When the game starts, Little Raven attacks Cullen. Jimmy says, Little Raven is from the tribe Bendix massacred. When the Kiowa players beat Little Raven to death, Cullen and Elam start to leave the field. Jimmy warns, the game isn’t over, and they’ll be killed if they lose or quit.

The Swede, wearing Joseph Dutson’s hat, plays hide and seek with Ezra.

Mickey evicts the sick prostitute. Eva chastises him. Mickey says, if Toole hadn't married Eva, she might be the sick one instead.

Durant greets Eva. He shows her a newspaper article Louise has written about her and gives Eva a Credit Mobilier stock certificate as a “baby gift.”

Cullen knocks Red Bear's son down. Knowing he’s beaten, the brave begins to chant. Jimmy encourages Cullen to "send him to the spirit world with honors." Cullen refuses to kill him, since the brave is just a child. Red Bear says, Cullen has shamed the Kiowa.

Cullen and Elam are tied up on a funeral pyre. Elam blames Cullen: "After all the men you killed, you picked today to stop killing."

At Hell on Wheels, Sean leads Durant into Cullen’s caboose. Durant asks for information on Cullen’s illegal activities. Sean can’t think of any, but does share that Cullen hung a young Mormon. Durant asks for more information.

The Swede tells Joseph he has dreamt of the Celestial Kingdom. Joseph offers to baptize him.

As flames rise around them, Cullen apologizes to Elam, then closes his eyes and prays. Suddenly, their bonds are cut and they’re freed. Jimmy says, he’s agreed to marry Red Bear's daughter “Buffalo Face” in exchange for releasing Cullen and Elam. Red Bear also gives Cullen all the trees he wants.

Mickey watches Durant and Sean exit Cullen's caboose. "You're on your own," Mickey tells Sean then adds, "I'm through pulling you out of the fire."

That night, Cullen returns to Hell on Wheels. "If you've come for my funeral, you've come too soon," Cullen says to Durant.

At the hotel, Durant breakfasts with Louise. Durant says her article about Cullen’s integrity is wrong. Durant says Cullen murdered five men in cold blood, and provides Louise with names.

In church, Cullen tells Ruth about the Kiowa. Cullen says, God didn’t answer his prayers. Jimmy saved him. Ruth suggests, “God can have a sense of humor” by working through Jimmy.

Eva asks Elam to read Louise’s article aloud. Elam agrees with the glowing description of Eva until a passage describes Elam as her "freedman lover." Elam asks if Eva is concerned about what people in New York think about her because she’s planning to run off with Declan. Elam storms out. Eva chases after him and says, she wants to away with Elam.

Louise confronts Cullen about Durant’s murder accusation. "That's not a railroad story," Cullen says and walks away.

Eva screams. Her tent has been slit down the back and her baby has been stolen.