Chapter 15 Summary

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Frith takes the message that de Winter will return at about seven o’clock this evening, and the girl is disappointed that her husband did not ask to speak to her. She had slept badly and had bad dreams when she did sleep. This morning she looks tired and drawn. At ten o’clock, Beatrice calls and asks her to go visit Gran, and the girl is eager to go, hoping the visit will make the day pass more quickly.

Beatrice tells the young girl she does not look well—too thin and no color—and wonders what is wrong with her. After the girl convinces the older woman that she is not pregnant, Beatrice assures her sister-in-law it would be a wonderful thing if she and de Winter had a child. Beatrice drives to her grandmother’s, chattering about many things. The girl takes the opportunity to ask Beatrice if she knows Jack Favell. Beatrice recalls that he is Rebecca’s cousin and a scoundrel. The family connection surprises the girl, for she did not expect the perfect Rebecca to be associated with such a person. Beatrice is abrupt and clearly does not want to talk about Favell or Rebecca any more, and the girl remains silent, as well.

Beatrice reminds her sister-in-law that their grandmother is nearly blind and “not very bright these days.” The girl immediately sees a strong resemblance between her husband and his grandmother as Beatrice introduces her to the old woman and talks to her about her son and her dogs. The girl finds the conversation exhausting and wonders if the forgetful old woman ever thinks about Manderley.

During tea, the grandmother forgets that Rebecca is dead and de Winter has remarried, asking where her “dear Rebecca” is. When no one answers her, she asks querulously what they have done with Rebecca. The nurse can see that her patient is getting overly excited and suggests the visitors should leave. After some silence, Beatrice apologizes for her grandmother’s behavior, puzzled since the old woman was perfectly aware that her grandson had gotten remarried while he was abroad. The girl understands, of course, but Beatrice is upset and says she should have anticipated this.

Rebecca used to make a “great fuss” over the old woman, inviting her often to Manderley. Rebecca had an amazing gift “of being attractive to people,” and obviously the old woman has not forgotten her. All the young girl cares about is that her husband never learns of this incident. Beatrice drops her sister-in-law off at Manderley’s gates, and the girl walks down the drive toward the house. As she walks, she wonders if anything here has changed much since her husband’s grandmother lived at Manderley and envisions the old woman enjoying de Winter and Beatrice when they were young.

When she arrives at the house, she sees that her husband has arrived. She hears him tell Danvers that she must write to Favell and tell him he is not welcome at Manderley, that his car was seen on the estate yesterday, and this is his last warning. Danvers leaves the library, her face distorted with anger and hostility. When the girl sees her husband, her face is pinched with anger and he tells her he disliked London, as usual. She wonders who told him about Favell and soon realizes he is not going to tell her about his confrontation with Danvers.

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