Chapter 25 Summary

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Finally, for the first time that evening, de Winter looks at his wife: “In his eyes she reads a message of farewell.” Everyone else in the room disappears for the couple as they share a silent, poignant moment of parting. Danvers still does not recall anyone in her beloved Rebecca’s life named Baker; she says that Rebecca never needed a doctor. In fact, she despised them.

Favell is dismissive, sure that this Baker fellow will not prove to be helpful to Rebecca’s case. Crawley says Baker is a well respected women’s specialist, and it seems odd that Rebecca would see a doctor but not tell anyone. Favell says he told Rebecca she was too thin, but Danvers says nothing. She seems dazed and bewildered by the existence of Baker; this is something she did not know about Rebecca, and the realization upsets her because Rebecca told her everything.

Because of the note, Danvers suddenly realizes that Rebecca was going to tell Favell whatever she learned from Baker. Only de Winter and his wife realize what the news must have been—that Rebecca was going to have a baby—but neither of them speaks. Danvers was unaware of Favell’s accusation that de Winter murdered Rebecca, but she begins to understand it now.

As she ponders the idea, Danvers shows doubt, wonder, hatred, and finally conviction as she stares unwaveringly at de Winter. The girl is thankful Danvers can do no more damage, and de Winter does not even seem to notice the housekeeper’s glare. Now Favell begins to perceive some faint idea of the truth and grows quite pale. He looks at de Winter triumphantly and asks to go with the men tomorrow when they visit Baker. Julyan grants him permission but insists the man must be sober. Favell grins and guarantees he will be sober, adding that Baker will probably help make his case for murder against de Winter.

They make plans to meet at nine o’clock the next morning, and Favell wonders if de Winter will “bolt in the night.” When de Winter asks Julyan if his word is enough assurance, the magistrate hesitates. A chagrined de Winter asks Danvers to lock him and his wife into their bedroom from the outside, an arrangement that seems to satisfy everyone. Julyan says goodnight to the girl, reminding her how badly he feels about all of this—though he is not able to look her in the eyes when he says it.

When the arrogant Favell holds out his hand to bid the girl goodnight, she puts both hands behind her back “like a foolish child.” He laughs and says she will be thrilled at the horrible stories which will soon be written about her and her marriage to a murderer. Danvers follows Favell out of the library, and the girl tells de Winter she will going with him in the morning. He agrees that they must go on being together as long as possible. Crawley offers to do anything at all, but there is nothing to be done, at least not until after tomorrow. Once Crawley leaves, the de Winters are alone and know their time together may be nearly over; the girl remembers every detail of this evening with her husband.

Later the telephone rings and the girl answers it. It is Beatrice, and she thinks the idea that Rebecca committed suicide is preposterous. She goes on about how ridiculous the whole situation is and wonders how de Winter is doing. Beatrice thinks her brother should get the inquiry verdict altered because it looks bad for the family. She is telling everyone she knows that the entire business is absurd, and she is considering writing a letter to the coroner. The girl says it is much better to leave things as they are, but Beatrice continues her rant and the girl finally begs her sister-in-law to leave things as they are.

It is an extraordinary conversation, and the girl is spent when the line finally goes dead. In the library, the de Winters act like lovers who have never kissed before but do so now, quite desperately. 

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