Study Guide

Number the Stars Chapter 9

By Lois Lowry

Chapter 9

Why Are You Lying?

  • After dinner, everyone goes their own way, but Annemarie decides she wants to talk to her uncle. 
  • She meets him by the cow that he's taking care of, and Henrik milks the cow while Annemarie thinks about what to say. It's never easy to confront someone.
  • Finally, she gets it out. She accuses him of telling her untruths, and it's easy to see she's pretty upset. Actually she's upset at him and at her mother. She knows that Great-aunt Birte isn't really part of their family. What gives?
  • Henrik finishes milking the cow and then tells Annemarie the truth, albeit in a roundabout way. In other to tell her she's right (we figured), he asks her how brave she is.
  • He tells her that she has to trust them; he can't give her all the details of what's going on. Basically, she can't know too much or it will harm her. 
  • Annemarie accepts this. Turns out she is pretty stinkin' brave.
  • Then Henrik says that they better get started with the "funeral."
  • The action then shifts to the evening, when the house is full of flowers. Oh, and a coffin. Annemarie now has to keep things from Ellen in the same way that her mother and Henrik had kept them from her. Ugh.
  • Several people Annemarie has never met show up to help mourn Birte: a young couple and their baby and an elderly man.
  • Annemarie's mom realizes that Annemarie knows the funeral is a sham.
  • Even though it's a fake funeral, Annemarie compares it to the one that her family had for Lise.
  • Henrik seems anxious (and to be honest, we're a bit anxious, too).
  • A few more people arrive, and Henrik takes Ellen out to meet them. Henrik brings Peter in, then Ellen comes in—along with her parents. (Sigh of relief.)