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Dear Child - Season 1, Episode 3 Recap

In the third episode of "Dear Child," the narrative unfolds with increased urgency and a twist that sets the stage for even more complexity. We start with The Woman, who we initially knew as Lena, finding herself bound to a sink in a dimly lit storage room. A man comes in, calling her Lena, but she gives no response, prompting him to leave and turn off the lights. Meanwhile, Aida is in a rough phone conversation, urging authorities to quickly handle explosive materials.

Switching scenes, we find Benedikt getting Hannah a room in his clinic. She follows her instructions meticulously, locking the door behind her after pretending to go to sleep. The episode continues its to-and-fro narrative style, taking us back to the past. The man returns and offers The Woman water on the condition that she dye her hair blonde. She complies, reaching the end of her rope. Gerd sits beside her in the present time, recounting how Lena once got a scar on her hand, a wound The Woman now possesses after dyeing her hair.

While an explosive ordnance disposal team works on a military field, a young boy named Jonathan hides under a bed with a miniature house. Aida prepares to enter the site, learning that the explosives are not military ones. Concurrently, Karin discovers Matthias cleaning Lena's old room for Hannah. Matthias insists that Hannah is their granddaughter, although he avoids elaborating when questioned by Karin.

A flashback takes us to The Woman learning the "house rules" from the man. She knows to stand with her arms out whenever he enters, complete with rigid bathroom schedules. Fast forward to now, she wakes from a nightmare, comforted by Gerd. She learns she has been imprisoned for five months.

As SWAT teams ready to enter a military compound, Gerd receives a call from Aida about a potential discovery. They suspect they know where The Woman is captive but can't confirm if it has explosives. The Woman reveals that 'he' will be there because she attacked him with a snow globe. Aida finds a lifeless man whose face is mutilated and eventually locates Jonathan. The Woman, identifying herself as Jasmin Grass, indicates that Jonathan followed her instructions.

Returning to the clinic, Gerd informs Jasmin they're searching for her father, Ulrich. She vehemently denies mutilating the man’s face, insisting that she merely struck him with the snow globe. After sedating her, Gerd phones Karin with the update. Meanwhile, Jonathan goes to Benedikt's clinic. He meets Hannah, who discreetly asks if he’s revealed anything about their baby sister, Sarah.

The episode escalates towards its end, revealing internal and external cameras in the house. Someone is still surveilling them. Gerd finds child-like drawings under a bunk bed and sends them to Karin. The team discovers an activated bomb in the house, and everyone evacuates just before it explodes. Later, forensics confirm that the snow globe attack was lethal but notes that there were additional injuries post-mortem. The episode culminates in the bombshell that neither of the children share DNA with the deceased man and have different fathers.

Pacing aside, this episode delves deeper into the tangled web of relationships, identities, and the dual timelines that "Dear Child" has established. The episode concludes with a cliffhanger, introducing the likelihood of multiple perpetrators in this chilling saga. It's not just the narrative tempo that’s quickening; the complexity is, too, keeping viewers on the edge of their seats.