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Howl's Moving Castle

Howl's Moving Castle


by Diana Wynne Jones

Howl's Moving Castle Chapter 7 Summary

In Which a Scarecrow Prevents Sophie From Leaving the Castle

  • Sophie wakes up in a rotten mood, worried over Martha and her own aches and pains.
  • Howl seems much more cheerful, though—he loves that gray-and-red suit Sophie mended for him.
  • Sophie keeps trying to leave the house to see Martha, but she gets interrupted over and over again.
  • She hears a knock on the door and opens it.
  • It is the scarecrow that she saw on the road in Chapter Two.
  • The scarecrow is somehow alive and trying to get into the moving castle, so Sophie gets Calcifer to speed up so that they can get rid of the freaky scarecrow.
  • Eventually they lose the scarecrow, but the whole thing leaves Sophie's old heart feeling weak.
  • Michael comes home and starts dancing Sophie around the room.
  • It turns out that Michael has just been to Market Chipping to see "Lettie" (really Martha, of course) at the pastry shop—and she hasn't even heard of Howl.
  • Michael tells Sophie that he's in love with Lettie, and that she is in love with him too.
  • Sophie is glad to hear all this: Michael is around the right age for Martha, and he's also an apprentice with good job prospects for the future.
  • But now she's worried about the real Lettie, who must trust Howl enough to have told him her real name.
  • Howl comes home worried that the King is going to appoint him Royal Magician.
  • Why exactly is he so against the idea of getting this job?
  • He knows that the King wants him to find Prince Justin.
  • And Prince Justin's argument with the King was over the Wizard Suliman.
  • And the Wizard Suliman disappeared after going up against the Witch of the Waste.
  • Howl really doesn't want to fight the Witch of the Waste.
  • They may have had a nasty break-up somewhere along the line…
  • Sophie is horrified: Howl broke the Witch of the Waste's heart? Is he suicidal?
  • Worry not, though, because Howl has a brilliant idea: since Sophie is so great at bullying Calcifer, she can bully the King.
  • Howl wants her to go to Kingsbury the next day pretending to be his mother, so that she can convince the King that Howl is a thoroughly bad man.

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