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The Return of the Native
by Thomas Hardy
The Return of the Native Book 5, Chapter 7 Summary
The Night of the Sixth of November Eustacia has decided to make a run for it with Damon. She spends her night preparing and goes for a walk to calm her nerves. Susan Nunsuch sees Eustacia and glares at her. Johnny is sick and Susan thinks that the "witch" Eustacia is to blame. Eustacia sends a signal to Damon and then goes home to wait for the time to leave. Meanwhile a servant drops a letter off from Clym. Grandfather Vye accepts it, but since he thinks Eustacia has gone to bed, he drops the letter off downstairs. Late that night Eustacia sneaks out, but isn't very quiet about it. Her grandfather hears her crying and calls after her, but is unable to find her. To make matters worse, it's a dark and stormy night (really) and he can't see where she's gone. Eustacia doesn't notice the letter on her way outside. Eustacia wanders outside in the rain and is all miserable. She starts to panic about her plan since she has no money and will be totally reliant upon Damon – not the most dependable chap, as we've seen. She's basically one step away from becoming Damon's mistress. Feeling miserable and theatrical, Eustacia delivers a big monologue and asks God and the universe why they made her life so miserable. Meanwhile, Susan is at home practicing some voodoo on her little Eustacia doll.
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