What is the summary for Chapter 13 of The Blithedale Romance?

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Michael Foster eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Zenobia tells the tale of "The Silvery Veil."

The story references the Veiled Lady, the mesmerist or medium that was popular a few months previously, and whom Coverdale had gone to see on the evening he met Mr. Moodie prior to departing for Blithedale. One evening a pair of young gentlemen was discussing the possibilities of her identity. One of them, Theodore, vowed he would uncover her identity as a wager. He went to the place of her exhibition and managed to gain access to her withdrawing-room, where she went after each performance. Hiding himself behind a screen, Theodore waited for her entrance. On entering, she floats around the room and then calls Theodore by name.

Emerging from his hiding place, Theodore states his intentions. She gives him two choices. First he could kiss her through the veil, and she would be his partner for life. If he refused to kiss her, he could still lift the veil, but she would be his most evil fate for eternity.

Deciding against the kiss, he lifts the veil. He sees a pale but beautiful face, which instantly disappears and Theodore is left to pine for her forever.

As for the Veiled Lady, she appeared in the midst of a group of visionaries. She became attached to one lady in particular, who is confronted by a dark magician who tells her that she must through the veil in his hand over her head, at which point he would come and take her away. Doing so, the Veiled Lady disappears forever.