by Gail Carson Levine
Ella Enchanted Chapter 29 Summary
- Well, knock them over with a feather, because it's Ella!
- She dashes out of the ball only to find that her carriage has turned back to a pumpkin. So she has to run home, and she loses one of the glass slippers along the way.
- She bursts in on Mandy, spills the whole story, and Mandy tells her to pack a bag: they can leave and make a living as cooks.
- Just then, they hear voices: the prince has arrived with his men, and is demanding to see everyone in the house.
- Ella throws back on her tattered old gown, and tries to hide behind the tallest servant. Char recognizes her, but Hattie says it's just "Cinders," their scullery maid.
- Char produces a glass slipper, saying it'll fit Ella's feet alone. Not so fast, says Hattie. It's her slipper.
- Olive snickers about this, since Hattie's feet are way too big, but Hattie tries it on anyway. Or tries to. Olive also tries, but her feet are too big as well.
- Char kneels to put the slipper on Ella's foot and tells her that she doesn't have to be Ella if she doesn't want to. Ella begins to cry, and
- Char realizes that the letter was a trick.
- He orders (without realizing it's an order) Ella to tell him whether she loves him. She says that she does. So next he says, "Then marry me!" Well, it's a direct order, so there's only one thing she can say: "Yes."
- Hattie knows this game and immediately orders Ella not to marry him. Okay, says Ella; no marriage.
- Not so fast. Mum Olga thinks it would be great to be related to the prince, so she urges Ella to marry Char. (Char urges her, too.)
- Well, this is tough. She loves Char and wants to marry him, but she could also destroy him.
- Flashback to all the times her obedience backfired: Lucinda's spell, Mandy's birthday cake, the ogres who wanted to eat her, her stepfamily abusing her, and so on.
- She bites down on her tongue and refuses to say yes. When her mouth involuntarily opens, she clamps a hand over it.
- Girl is having a full-on meltdown here. She loves Char and wants to say yes, but she knows she can't. This goes on for a while. She's rocking and crying and freaking out, and the finally she realizes something: she has to save Char.
- Somehow, that recognition gives her what she needs to cry out that no, she won't marry him, and no one can force her to.
- Olive and Hattie each try giving Ella commands, and she doesn't listen to them. Instead, she explains to Char that he wouldn't be safe if she were his wife.
- And then she realizes that she's acting against her mother's command not to tell anyone about the spell.
- She hugs Char, and Mandy tells her that she broke the spell: she rescued herself when she rescued the prince.
- Evidently, loving Char (and the kingdom) was enough to let her break the spell, but suffering under her stepfamily wasn't quite bad enough.
- She then curtsies to Char, saying that a few moments ago, she was still too young to marry. Now she's his.
- Hm, sounds like there's some kind of theme here about learning to make your own decisions.
- They kiss.
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