At a village, apes gather for the funeral of Lucian, father of Fauna. After the ceremony, Fauna wonders how the humans could have killed her father and says that she hates them. Lucian's brother Sestus says that the humans are just animals, and the local gorilla commander Perdix promises to bring the killers to justice. The other apes say that they must unite and drive the humans out, but Perdix insists that it will be handled within the law and he is the law.
Pete, Alan, and Galen stay at the nearby home of Jasko, and Jasko explains that the apes hate humans because there are too many of them. Galen points out that ape law forbids strikes against humans, but Jasko explains that despite Perdix and his aide Zon's actions, they can't be everywhere.
A group of hooded ape Dragoons wielding torches ride across the country.
The humans are fishing nearby and Galen is with them. They spot the Dragoons ride up to Jasko's cottage and tell him to get out. When he refuses, the hooded Zon lassos him and drags him across the yard while the other Dragoons set the cottage on fire. The fugitives arrive too late to do anything, and Alan says that they've seen the same thing before. The astronauts figure that Fauna can help them since it started with Lucian's murder.
Later, the trio approach Fauna as she stands at the shore. They realize that she's blind, and Galen says that they're strangers. Fauna asks if they're apes, and Galen plays along. She says that they killed her father and Galen offers his condolences. Fauna vows that she will always hate humans for what they did. Galen gives them fake names and Fauna thinks that Pete's name sounds familiar. She offers them hospitality at home, and explains that she lives with Sestus but he's gone to the village for supplies. Pee accepts on behalf of the trio.
The Dragoons split up and one of them--Sestus--removes his hood.
Fauna takes the trio to her home and assures them that she manages well despite her blindness. She admits that she misses bleeding, and explains that Lucian collected books and read them to her. Fauna says that Sestus was going to meet Lucian and saw two humans kill her father, but was too far away to stop them. Sestus warned Lucian that the humans were treacherous but Lucian wouldn't listen. It was too dark for him to get any details. She starts to pour Pete some milk and Pete jerks when she gets close to touching him.
Sestus rides up and they hear him. Pete tells Fauna that reading banned books got them into trouble with the Ministry. Fauna admits that Sestus and Lucian used to quarrel about books, and offers them a place to hide nearby. They accept and Fauna leads them out the back to a cave near the beach. She lights candles and says that she used to come there with someone she grew up with and cared for very much, and it was their secret place. The boy left when Fauna became blind. She says that Pete's voice sounds like his, and asks to touch his face. Galen secretly intervenes to maintain the deception, and Fauna says that she'll return in the morning after Sestus leaves for the village. She asks them to stay, and Pete agrees.
Once Fauna leaves, Galen complains that he doesn't like deceiving the girl. The astronauts figure that their best chance is to find the Dragoon leader, and the organization will fall apart without him. They want someone to join the Dragoons and find out, and Galen realizes that they're talking about him.
Later, Galen approaches Sestus' wagon and says that two humans stole his horse. He says that it's a good district but they have problems with humans, and offers Galen a ride to the village to tell the police. Meanwhile, Pete and Alan watch from hiding. They spot an ape running across the countryside, and Alan tells Pete to go back to the cave while he follows the ride.
As they head for town, Sestus says that humans murdered his brother and haven't been caught. Galen says that a similar thing happened where he lives, and talks about how they dealt with it. Sestus assures him that he would say nothing to help a human, and Galen tells him that a group of apes got together and ran the humans off. The local says that Galen will enjoy meeting some special friends of his.
Alan follows the gorilla rider.
At the shore, Fauna hears Pete and he greets her. He says that Galen and Alan went to get some water, and Fauna tells him that she likes talking to him. As they go to the cave, Fauna asks him to tell he some of the stories from the books that he's read. Pete starts talking about Robinson Crusoe.
Sestus takes Galen to the Dragoons and they indoctrinate him as a member. After they drink to their success, Sestus says that Galen will get their leader's approval at the meeting, and then ride out to attack the human.
The gorilla dismounts and takes a drink. Alan steps on a branch as he approaches, and the gorilla hears him. He goes to investigate and spots Alan hiding in a tree, and draws his gun. Alan climbs down and humps him, and manages to take him down after a brief fight. The astronaut checks the gorilla's pouch and finds a Dragoon hood. When Alan goes back to the beach, he says that the rider led him the Dragoon's meeting place. Pete has found Lucian's journal and he was meeting humans that they liked to share his knowledge. Alan wonders if Sestus was mistaken about what he saw, and Pete suggests that he was lying.
Sestus takes Galen to his cottage and tells him that Fauna will see to him. He tells Galen that Fauna knows nothing about his activities and he wants it kept that way. Galen goes inside and Fauna says that she was at the cave with Pete. She tells Galen that she thinks that she loves Pete, and describes the warmth and gentleness in his voice. Shocked, Galen warns her not to trust such a quick love. Fauna asks him if it's possible, and Galen says that it isn't. He blurts out that Pete isn't an ape, and adds that he can't be trusted. Galen insists that Pete is a friend but he's concerned about Fauna, and Fauna angrily says that she doesn't want to hear any more from him.
Galen goes to the cave and tells Pete and Alan that Sestus is a Dragoon. He then starts sniping at Pete, saying that he's done plenty. Galen tells him to stay away from Fauna and that she's in love with Pete. The chimpanzee insists that it's tragic and it will destroy her when she finds out the truth. Alan stops them from fighting, and Pete says that he'll go to Fauna. Galen reconsiders and asks him to be gentle with her.
Fauna is getting water from the well when Pete approaches her. She says that it's all right if Pete doesn't care for her, and hopes that in time he will. Pete tells her that there are things about him that she didn't know, and Fauna demands to know what is wrong. The astronaut tells her the story of Isaac, Jacob, and Esau, and how Isaac impersonated Esau to get Isaac's blessing. Pete says that it was a deception born out of desperate need but not meant to harm anyone, but Fauna insists that she's touched Pete's face and knows that it's strong. He says that there's nothing between us and never can be, and they're leaving and she will never hear his voice again. Pee gives her Lucian's journal and leaves, and Fauna breaks into tears.
Later, Pete and Alan go to the village and break into Perdix's office. They take him captive and say that they'll take him to the Dragoon's meeting that night. Perdix comes in, rifle drawn, and they realize that they capture his aide.
That night, Sestus takes Galen to the meeting and the hooded Zon calls Galen forward. Sestus vouches for Galen, and Galen swears his allegiance to the Dragoons' goals. They take a vote and everyone agrees. Zon presents Galen with his hood and then says that they will meet at midday for their next raid... and Galen will kill the human target. Galen interrupts to say that he saw the two humans nearby heading for the beach. He suggests that they go down and find them at night, and Zon says that it's impossible to search at night so they'll meet at sunrise and then Galen can kill them. Afterward, Galen asks to stay behind so he can enjoy the ceremony alone for a while.
The next morning, Perdix tells Alan and Galen that they're lying. He finally agrees to go to the meeting place alone and will release them if the Dragoons are there. Alan points out that they won't be there now, but Perdix isn't convinced. Galen arrives and peers in through the window, and comes in wearing his Dragoon hood. He holds Perdix at gunpoint and tells his friends that the Dragoons will be at the beach. Alan takes Perdix there and Pete and Galen soon follow.
Fauna is walking on the cliff when she hears the Dragoons approaching. Alan and Perdix arrive as the Dragoons approach the cave, and Alan tosses the rifle to Perdix before riding off. Perdix rides down as the Dragoons confirm that there's no one in the cave. He orders the Dragoons to put their weapons down, and recognizes Zon's voice. Zon removes his hood and tells him to turn his back while they kill humans. He points out that Perdix is outnumbered ten to one, and Perdix asks if Zon is outnumbered. The hooded Sestus objects, saying that they've gone too far when they're threatening apes.
As Zon prepares to shoot Perdix, Fauna falls off the cliff into the water below. Pete and Galen arrive and Pete swims out to rescue her. Alan swims out to help, and they bring Fauna to the beach. When Fauna wakes up, she touches Pete's face and realizes that he's a human. He says that it was a deception born of desperate need, but she orders him away. Sestus goes to his niece and tells her that Pete saved her life, but she insists that Pete tricked her like the humans tricked her father.
Alan tells her that if a human killed her father then it doesn't mean all humans are bad. Sestus agrees and admits that an ape killed Lucian. He explains that he and Zon warned Lucian, and Zon hit Lucian and accidentally killed him. Zon said that he and Sestus both were responsible, so he lied. The gorilla says that it doesn't matter who killed Lucian, but the Dragoons throw down their hoods and walk away. Perdix arrests Zon and takes him away.
Later, Sestus tells the fugitives that they're welcome to stay on but Alan says that they have to move on. Pete apologizes to Fauna for deceiving her, and she wonders how she could have loved a human. He kisses her on the cheek and leave with his friends.
Written by Gadfly on Feb 6, 2017