That night, when they finish digging, Edward sends everyone back to the Wardhouse. He wants to see Eric. He needs to say something to the boy.
He knocks on the Eric's door and a woman about Edward's age answers and instantly recognizes him as the archeologist that Eric is always telling her about. "Speak of the Devil!" she says as she invites him in for some tea.
Edward wants to thank Eric, but the woman, his mother, won't hear of it. She's just happy about how much Eric's been talking about the dig in the meadow.
Edward thinks that the woman is rather lovely and can't imagine why they don't get more visitors. Though maybe it's Eric that keeps them away, Edward thinks, and then feels ashamed of himself. Eric is just like anyone else, isn't he?
Finally, they introduce themselves. "I'm Merle," Eric's mother says…