For the fictional book, see The Girl Who Told Time.
The Girl Who Told Time
Original Air date March 29, 2017
Written by Noga Landau & Henry Alonso Myers
Directed by Joshua Butler
Episode Navigation
Preceded by
Lesser Evils
Followed by
The Rattening

The Girl Who Told Time is the tenth episode of the second season of The Magicians. It is also the twenty-third episode overall.


A haunting vision moves Quentin to help Julia recover her shade. Penny and Kady search for an overdue library book for The Order, but find an unusual front for magic in the process. In Fillory, Margo tries to hide the deal she made with the Fairies and Eliot's wedding plans get kicked up a notch.[1]


Quentin and JuliaEdit

Julia is being held in the Clean Room at Brakebills, but Dean Fogg releases her, she's not a student and he's not running a jail. (While there, she has a daydream of Dean Fogg testing her at Brakebills, finding that her discipline is meta-composition, also called Knowledge magic, which is part psychic, part physical; she also dreams Dean Fogg saying he was likewise Knowledge.)

At Brakebills, Josh Hoberman is selling various magic-drugged baked goods to students. Quentin walks in and says that Eliot needs him in Fillory to cook for the wedding. He summarizes his situation: he's released niffin-Alice, he's self-medicating, they don't have Abilify in Fillory, so he's improvising. Josh recommends one of his cakes, they let you see into other worlds.

Quentin is lying on a bed, looking spaced out. Then it seems he's in a dream, and sees a girl who looks like Julia did when she was 12 years old, who says she is Julia's Shade. The Shade is looking for Julia but can't find her. The Shade seems to be in another world, which is why drugged Quentin can see her, she doesn't know which world. Quentin says he'll help find her.

Quentin visits Julia, who is embarassed about how she used him to try to defeat Reynard. She says she never used to ask if she was doing the right thing, she always knew, and now it's all she asks because she doesn't "feel" what's right, she has to remember it from memory. Quentin says he's spoken to her Shade, who wants to get back with Julia.

They research, but can't find anything on the afterlife that isn't religious, and almost nothing on Shades. From Dean Fogg, they learn that Alice was interested in Shades. Quentin doesn't remember Alice ever knowing anything about Shades, but Dean Fogg explains that the time loop resulted in many different Alice's, and no one remembers them all except Dean Fogg. The 23rd Alice was obsessed with the afterlife, how to commune with Shades and lost souls. He doesn't know what she knew, just that she talked about them a lot.

Julia suggests a Tesla Flexion. Dean Fogg says the Tesla Flexion (made by Fred Flexion), causes a fold between two realities. It's only worked once, and three people died trying to shut it down, so it's dangerous. They prepare to get it going, Dean Fogg and Julia will do the spell to run it, while Quentin asks the Alice of that reality what he wants.

In the Tesla Flexion, Quentin talks to the Alice of the other reality. She says Shades go to The Underworld, which is only accessible to the dead, except the living can perhaps get to it via a Gatekeeper, an "ancient one, older than the world," but she doesn't know how to find one.

Julia comes to Quentin and says she has figured out what an ancient one is. She shows him an illustration in a book: a dragon.

Kady and PennyEdit

Kady wants to deal with Reynard, Penny says he'll go with her, his contract with the Library is still being processed, so he's free. They walk through a door, expecting to go someplace on Earth, and find themselves in the Library: his application has been processed, and he's now a member of the Order.

In the Library, Kady sees Howard, another Library employee, and asks for help on raising enough power to defeat a god. He finds that they have no books on that topic, they have legends and stories, but she wants a practical how-to manual, but nothing like that exists.

Penny comes to her and says they say there are books that can help with his hands, but he has to research them on his own time. Right now he's assigned to tracking down overdue books, and he can't cast, so he asks Kady if she can do the locator spell.

Penny and Kady enter the offices of FuzzBeat, a web company, where the tracking spell says the book is in the hands of "Harriet Schiff." They ask Harriet for "Principles of Conjuring Elementals," which is ten years overdue. Harriet waves her hands, and Penny cringes as if to avoid being hit by spell-casting. But she's not casting spells, she's deaf and using American Sign Language. Kady can read American Sign Language, and Harriet reads lips, so they communicate easily enough.

Harriet says her web business is her magic: half the clickbait out there is encoded knowledge for magicians. She shows an example of a silly image of pandas, which encodes a serious spell on dark matter. Harriet says she loves the Library, but their accessability is poor. She gets the overdue book, takes out the date-due card, waves her fingers at it, puts it back in, and gives them the book. She also tells Kady that the Library has all knowledge, including on killing gods.

At the Library, Penny gives the overdue book to Howard, who gets out the date card, stamps it ... and a mist rises from the card into Howard's nostrils. Howard looks a bit zombified, gets pulled towards a locked door, against his will; with the last bit of his will, he pulls away from the door, and hits a "break in case of emergency" button, which causes him to collapse and die.

The Librarian identifies the curse that was on the date card: it was trying to force Howard into doing something dangerous, and he was brave to kill himself. That door is a secret door, that Order members learn of when the time is right, which Penny is not ready for. When pressed, she says it is to the Poison Room, for books too dangerous for the public. She suspects Harriet's curse was trying to steal from it.

Kady and Penny visit FuzzBeat again, and find the offices cleared out. They find a "thank you" note from Harriet, which also mentions the book "The Ars Deividium" ("The Art of Killing Gods"), with a Library call number, and a note that it is in the Poison Room.

Eliot and MargoEdit

In Fillory, preparations are underway for the wedding between Eliot and Idri. Eliot is not doing well managing things. Quentin is there drinking, and Margo tells him he needs to pick up on hand-holding Eliot, and doing Eliot's Earth-errands. (At this point, Quentin went to tell Josh to come to Fillory.)

Josh and Eliot consult on foods, and Eliot is concerned about how people like him. Eliot asks Josh to create a potion that, when consumed, will make people like him. That's right up Josh's alley: psychotropic food magic.

(Throughout, there are signs of fairies watching people, particularly Margo and Fen. Nobody can see them but Margo and Fen.)

Josh says he was doing some dish washing, because the regular dish washer is drunk. He says he found a note in a dish; the note seems to be coordination among "FU Fighters", planning an attack on the royal family. Margo says that dish washer is likely passing messages for FU; she suggests sobering up the dish washer, putting the note back in the dish, and seeing what happens... after she puts a tracking spell on the note.

They watch on a map where the tracking spell goes, and find it in some forest; likely the FU Fighter lair is there. Josh has brewed up a jug of his potion to make the drinkers like Eliot; Eliot and Margo convince Josh to take it to the FU Fighter lair and put it in their stew.

Margo searches for Fen, and runs into a fairy; Margo wants to talk about the deal. Fen arrives and is glad that Margo saw the fairy also, Fen has been seeing them watching her. Margo explains the deal about the Wellspring in exchange for Fen's baby, and Fen rejects the idea: she didn't agree to that.

Fen goes to find Eliot to complain about the deal, but she finds a fairy who says the deal must be honored. The fairy rushes at her and they both disappear.


"Cheat Day" introduced "Fillorians United", and their Fighters, thus called by Margo "FU Fighters."

Margo hasn't told Fen or anyone else of the deal she made in "Lesser Evils", to give the fairies Fen's child.

In "Thirty-Nine Graves", we learned that Jane Chatwin had been gifted with the power to alter time, and had used it to redo the world 39 times. Everyone's memory was reset to the start 39 times, to do things differently each time, as guided by Jane. Surely Jane retained a memory of what happened in each of the 39 times. Now Dean Fogg says he is the only one who knows all of the 39 prior Alices.



Guest StarringEdit


  • Jeff Gulka as Timid Servant
  • Nikolai Witschl as Ominous Fairy
  • Pippa Mackie as Receptionist
  • Ricky He as Student
  • Selena Lohan as Fuzzbeat Employee