End Of The Innocence

So much for unity.

A week after merging tribes and sharing chocolate, the newly formed Xhakum Tribe quickly deteriorated into a dysfunctional group at odds with each other.

Epitomizing this tension was Bobby Jon vs. Jamie, a continuing battle that prompted Bobby Jon to warn that he may just have to "knock his teeth out."

But when the war of words was over, it was innocent rancher Brandon Bellinger of Manhattan, Kan. who was voted out of Guatemala.

Things got ugly early. The Yaxha quartet hardly got a warm reception when they joined Nakum in the middle of the night. It became immediately apparent that the six Nakum members would play the odds and banish the outnumbered newcomers.

"We feel like we're slaves," said Danni.

Brandon, prescient as ever, declared that he and Bobby Jon were on the chopping block.

But, wait! There was hope. A note arrived in the Mayan mail announcing that an Individual Immunity Idol had been hidden in the jungle. Just find it and you're guaranteed one free pass up until the Final Four.

Oh, and by the way, the idol is six inches in length and made of stone.

Rafe managed to stir a hornet's nest looking for the magical talisman. "That was a signal from the Mayan gods," he declated, "that I am not meant to find this idol."

Nor was anyone else. At least, if the idol was found, no one admitted it.

The first challenge presented a tough choice: Try and balance a pot on your head for an hour to win immunity or sit down and enjoy a feast.

While Bobby Jon, Cindy, Brandon, Judd, and Gary elected to be pot-heads, the five others, feeling secure in their numbers, sat down and ate.

But Jamie wasn't content just feasting; he wanted to do some talking. "How you doing Bobby Jon, good?" he mocked as he munched away.

The comment didn't just irk Bobby Jon, it seemed to annoy his erstwhile Nakum tribe mates.

"I thought it was very cocky, very arrogant," said Danni.

"I cannot respect myself and go far in this game with Jamie," said Rafe.

Was Jamie digging himself a hole?

Perhaps. Either way, Gary was balancing himself out of one by winning the jar-on-head contest, and with it, immunity.

At tribal council, Bobby Jon and Jamie were at each other's throats again. As the two debated who had less class, host Jeff Probst shook his head like a disapproving father.

"My hope is that everyone votes their heart, not their mind," said Gary.

Six people voted for Brandon, four for Jamie.

Rueful frowns and vacant stares made it clear: most voted their minds, not their hearts.

Brandon will be on The Early Show Friday morning to explain the ins and outs of the game.
By Stephen Smith