Part 5, Chapters 9-10 Summary
Edgar slips into the barn and puts Essay into the pen with her littermates. He begins searching for the bottle Claude had hidden. Because Claude was handling it so carefully, Edgar reasons that he would not keep it in the house; he also did not seem to want to throw it away after all this time. Edgar looks in the medicine cabinet but finds nothing.
Suddenly he feels a hand holding a cloth over his mouth. He smells an odor and recognizes it as Prestone, which is almost pure ether. He hears Glen’s voice telling him to wait. Edgar tries holding his breath but, as Glen points out, this will only make him breathe deeper. As Edgar slips into semiconsciousness, Glen carries him to the barn door. When Glen sets him down to open the door, Edgar reaches out and finds the can of quicklime. When Glen picks him up again, Edgar dumps the quicklime over Glen’s head. With his eyes burning, Glen sets Edgar down and begs him to get some water to wash the lime away. Edgar staggers to the door and out into the fresh air, which begins to clear away the fumes of the ether from the broken bottle Glen dropped. Glen comes out to lean against the tractor, screaming for someone to help him. Trudy hears him from the house and rushes out.
Trudy lies awake, listening for Edgar’s steps to come onto the porch. She does not understand what he is looking for in the barn. She sits up in bed when she hears a man’s voice and the dogs barking. Claude tells her to stay in bed while he checks. She notices that his face looks more alarmed than puzzled. She recognizes the voice as Glen’s, and Claude says that he is probably drunk again. Trudy runs out to the porch to see Glen kneeling against...
(The entire section is 487 words.)