The Floating Lady

In this episode, Totsakan (Ravana), blinded by passion, ponders how to get hold of Sida (Sita), the object of his love. The episode begins with an audience scene at the court of Totsakan, where Totsakan’s niece Benyakai claims that she can transform herself into Sida’s double and thus fool Phra Ram (Rama) and Phra Lak (Laksmana). Benyakal leaves for a moment, and returns, to stand before Totsakan as Sida’s double. The enchanted Totsakan cannot restrain himself, and starts to make advances to the maiden. Benyakai changes back into her own self, and the embarrassed Totsakan apologizes for his behaviour. Benyakai sets out upon her mission, assuming her magical disguise as Sida. She enters the water and floats up the Godavari River to a place where Phra Ram bathes every morning.

Phra Ram is sleeping in his camp, and awakes at dawn. Amidst the sounds of the early morning Phra Ram marches down to the river for his morning bath. As he approaches the river, the apparently dead body of Sida floats upstream. Phra Ram is shocked at the sight of his dead beloved. After much lamenting, he turns to Hanuman, the general of his monkey army, who is not, however, so easily taken in by tricks and appearances. Hanuman wonders how a dead body could float upstream against the current, and he suggests that the body should be immediately cremated. The pyre is prepared and the body is placed upon it. Unable to bear the heat, Benyakai, in the guise of Sida, flies up into the sky, closely pursued by Hanuman, who with his supernatural powers is also able to fly. The episode ends in a fabulous scene, where Hanuman pursues Benyakai through the heavens, catches her, and finally makes love to her.