The negotiations between the Emersons and Sir Harry go well, and their move-in is scheduled. Everyone is pleased, except for Miss Alan, Miss Alan, and Lucy – the old ladies blame the young one for their plans falling through.
Mr. Beebe is particularly pleased, and insists that Freddy should go and call on the Emersons as soon as they move in.
Lucy dreads the arrival of the Emersons, even though she attempts to convince herself that everything will be fine now that she’s engaged.
Luckily for Lucy, a visit to Cecil’s mother comes up. She escapes the onset of the Emersons by heading to London with Cecil.
In the meanwhile, Charlotte re-enters the picture. We learn that the cousins didn’t have a great time after they left Florence. Charlotte’s infuriating “unselfishness” finally got the better of Lucy, and as a result, the two haven’t communicated since their trip. In London, though, Lucy receives a letter from Charlotte.
In it, Charlotte informs Lucy that she’s heard from Miss Lavish (who was visiting Summer Street) that the Emersons are hanging around there. She’s worried about what might happen, and wants Lucy to come clean with her mother and brother, and refuse to see the Emersons.
Lucy is annoyed by this suggestion, and responds with an impressively chilly letter. Go Lucy!
Charlotte succeeds in planting the seeds of discomfort, though, and Lucy is plagued by nervousness over the next few days. She wonders if she should tell Cecil about her kiss with George Emerson, but can’t make herself do anything about it.
Cecil, meanwhile, attempts to introduce Lucy to “real” society. Lucy sees that becoming part of the Vyses’ London crowd will alienate her from everyone she loves.
At a party thrown by Mrs. Vyse, Lucy is asked to play the piano. She plays some Schumann tragically and touchingly – but refuses to play Beethoven.
After everyone leaves, Mrs. Vyse and Cecil share a creepy little moment of mother-son bonding, if you want to call it that. Mrs. Vyse, who’s a nice lady totally brainwashed by high society, eerily tells Cecil to make Lucy “one of us.” Now, maybe we at Shmoop have seen one or two (or fifty) too many B-movies, but in our collective memory, the words “make her one of us” are usually accompanied by wild maniacal laughter and blood-sucking and/or brain-eating. Just saying.
Some typically snotty Vyse family chat ensues; Mrs. V. comments on how Lucy is already getting rid of her “Honeychurch taint,” which might translate to us as her “individuality and lack of elitism.”
Cecil gushes about Lucy’s style, and muses that her upbringing is perfect (country life + Italy = womanly perfection). He wonders if maybe London educations aren’t all they’re cracked up to be, then remembers that he himself had one. He quickly backpedals.
Mrs. Vyse repeats her ominous commandment (“Make her one of us”), and goes to bed.
A cry in the night – oh no! Cecil is sucking Lucy’s blood to transform her into his immortal vampire bride!
Just kidding (but we really had you there for a minute, didn’t we?). There is a cry in the night, and it is Lucy, but nobody’s being vampirized here. She wakes from a nightmare, and Mrs. Vyse comes to comfort her. We get the feeling that all is not well with little Miss Honeychurch…