Last Updated on March 16, 2020, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 1040
Chapter 7: The Home Underground
Wendy, John, and Michael are being fitted for the hollow holes of their trees that allow them access to the underground. The underground home consists of mushrooms for seats, a huge tree that grows rapidly through the middle—which they have to cut down every day in order to have enough room to play—Tinker Bell’s fancy “private apartment,” and a large bed that everybody shares, except for Michael, who, as the baby of the family, sleeps in a crib.
Wendy has been working hard to take care of the boys by cooking their meals, sewing their clothes, and doing their laundry. Her pet wolf from her prior dreams of Neverland has found her and has followed her everywhere since. However, she becomes concerned about her parents, especially because sometimes John and Michael cannot remember them. Wendy thus gives her brothers exams about their parents’ features so they will not forget them, and the other boys excitedly join in, despite not knowing Mr. and Mrs. Darling. Peter refuses, however, because “he despised all mothers except Wendy.” While in their home underground, Wendy and the boys narrate make-believe adventures, often taking on the roles of redskins and pirates in their games. While choosing which adventure to go on next, the group decides to go to the mermaids’ lagoon.
Chapter 8: The Mermaids’ Lagoon
The boys often go to the mermaids’ lagoon to play, but they do not necessarily get along with the mermaids; however, the mermaids do get along with Peter. The boys always stay away from the lagoon in moonlight, and the narrator suggests that the lagoon becomes an ominous and dangerous place during the night.
The children often sunbathe on Marooner’s Rock in the mermaids’ lagoon. On this day, as they lie on the rock, the lagoon “that had always been hitherto such a laughing place” mysteriously turns cold and dark. Wendy, afraid, does not wake up the children, but Peter’s ability to sense danger wakes him up, and he warns the others that pirates are coming. The boys dive into the water, and a pirate dinghy approaches, carrying Smee, Starkey, and Tiger Lily, whom the pirates have taken captive. The dinghy crashes into a rock, where they plan to leave Tiger Lily to die. Wendy and Peter watch while floating in the water nearby. To save Tiger Lily, Peter decides to imitate Hook’s voice and tells Smee and Starkey to set her free; they are fooled by his imitation and cut off her cords. However, shortly after, the real Hook’s voice can be heard, and Wendy and Peter realize he is also in the water. They see him get into the boat with Smee and Starkey, solemnly telling them that “the game is over” because the boys have found a mother. Smee does not know what a mother is, which surprises Wendy; she makes a noise, and the pirates hear. Accordingly, Smee suggests to Hook that they kidnap Wendy and make her the pirates’ mother. Hook agrees to the plan and asks the two pirates where Tiger Lily is. Angry and shocked when Smee and Starkey tell Hook that they heard Hook give the order to let her go, Hook tells them it was not him. Suspecting that someone is tricking them, Hook calls out to ask whose “spirit . . . haunts this dark lagoon tonight.” Peter foolishly responds but says that he is Captain Hook, and when Hook questions this, Peter claims that Hook himself is a codfish. The other pirates believe this. Hook decides to play a guessing game with Peter, asking him questions about his identity; finally, when Hook asks him if he is a “wonderful boy,” he answers yes. Peter eventually reveals to the pirates that he is indeed Peter Pan.
Peter calls out to the other boys, who come out of their hiding places. As a fight ensues between the pirates and the lost boys, Peter is determined to confront Captain Hook. When the two approach one another, Peter steals one of Hook’s knives, but when Peter notices that Hook is below him—giving Peter an unfair advantage—he assists Hook up the rock. Nevertheless, Hook bites Peter’s hand, which makes Peter feel “quite helpless,” and Hook swipes him again with his hook. The boys then see Hook swim frantically toward his boat with the alligator in pursuit; rather than celebrate, the boys become worried when they realize Peter and Wendy are missing. Knowing that Peter always returns, they go back to their home underground. Soon after, Peter and Wendy appear out of the water, with Wendy in Peter’s arms. Seeing the water rising, Peter becomes anxious and tells Wendy that they are stuck on a rock that will soon be submerged in water. When Wendy asks Peter if they should swim or fly, Peter tells her he can do neither because of his wounds. Seeing Michael’s kite drifting over the lagoon, Peter suggests that Wendy use the kite to fly away. Wendy wants Peter to come with her, but he knows the kite cannot carry two, so he ties the kite’s tail around her and lets her go. At first, Peter is afraid, but after some thought, he says that “To die will be an awfully big adventure.”
Chapter 9: The Never Bird
As the rock becomes further submerged, Peter sees a piece of paper floating in the water. This piece of paper turns out to be the Never bird, who is there to save Peter. She tells him to get into her nest, but because Peter doesn’t understand her language, they get in an argument. The Never bird, still determined to save him, clears some of the eggs out of her nest so that Peter can sit in it. As they depart, Peter observes a stave on the rock—filled with the pirates’ treasures—that the children found and henceforth puts the remaining eggs inside his hat. Peter then places the eggs carefully in the lagoon, where they float to shore. Further, he uses the stave as a mast and creates a sail with his shirt. Peter henceforth finds his way back to the underground home, where Wendy has already returned.
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