Study Guide

Outlander Chapter 6

By Diana Gabaldon

Chapter 6

Colum's Hall

  • When Part 2 (Castle Leoch) begins, Claire is lucky enough to sit with Colum at dinner, along with his son, Hamish, and his brother, Dougal, and Dougal's family.
  • At dinner, she wonders aloud if Jamie is okay. When she finds out that he was sent to the stables to work, she worries that he'll injure himself again.
  • She doesn't have time to follow up, though, and after dinner, she stumbles through the dark castle to her room and returns to sleep.
  • The next morning, Mrs. FitzGibbons wakes Claire again. This time, she has makeup to prepare her for "Hall," which seems to require a bit more fancy dress. 
  • It turns out Hall is a court proceeding for Colum to hear people's complaints and dispense justice. He's basically the Judge Judy of Castle Leoch. 
  • They listen to Claire, too, deciding that she may be an English spy but they'll still tolerate her for a bit. 
  • Next is the case of a girl accused of "loose behavior" (6.55). She's ordered to be whipped… but Jamie steps in and takes her punishment instead.
  • He chooses to take fists instead of a belt, and is punched until the man jabs him in the face and almost breaks his nose.
  • Claire tends to him, of course (who else will?), and he admits that he doesn't know the girl, named Laoghaire; he just didn't want to see her shamed in front of the whole castle.
  • Mrs. FitzGibbons assists, and she has a helpful piece of advice: leeches. The leeches bring down the swelling on Jamie's face.
  • The next day, Claire checks on Jamie at the stables. 
  • He shares a story about how he once ate grass because he was living on the run in the woods and had no other food. Then he has to go back to work.
  • Claire leaves, and realizes that she listened to his story, but forgot to ask him about his shoulder.