Study Guide

The Westing Game Chapter 18

By Ellen Raskin

Chapter 18

The Trackers

  • Flora braids Turtle's hair in the mornings, as Turtle reads from the Wall Street Journal. One day, Turtle reads that Julian Eastman, Westing Paper Products Chairman, says their earnings will double.
  • She tells Flora to sell their other stocks and buy all WPP stock. Flora calls her "Alice" and agrees. Turtle says she should call Flora something besides "Mrs. Baumbach" and asks if she could say "Mrs. Baba." Flora says, just call her "Baba."
  • Turtle asks if Flora's daughter Rosalie was smart, and Flora says Turtle's the smartest kid she's known. Turtle jealously says Rosalie was probably all domestic. Flora falters and says Rosalie was extraordinary and loving.
  • Turtle gets mad and says they should get going.
  • Upstairs, Sandy's taking notes on the players. He's on Flora, who had a developmentally disabled daughter, Rosalie, who died the previous year. Flora's Westing connection is the wedding dress she made for Violet.
  • He starts looking at the information on Otis, which makes him laugh.
  • Meanwhile, Theo catches up with Doug. He starts to ask about Crow and then stops; he tells Doug he figured out that their clues mean ammonium nitrate. Doug doesn't really pay attention, because he's focused on the next weekend's track match. Theo says they're partners, and he wants Doug to follow Otis.
  • Flora's watching the stock points and she see WPP start to rise, and rise.
  • Later that day, Doug follows Otis instead of going to track practice. He follows him to Sunset Towers, where Doug chats with Sandy, and then to Ed Plum's house, and then to the hospital. Then he follows him to a stockbroker's, back to high school, and back to Sunset Towers. There, Otis finds him and gives him a letter from Plum. It says everyone has to go back to the Westing house that Saturday night.
  • Doug, totally worn out, signs his name and "miler" (18.41).
  • Since this meeting's coming, Judge Ford steps up her investigation. She and Sandy discuss more of the tenants. Otis has a low IQ and is connected to Westing because he delivered the letters from Plum. Dr. Deere is an intern in plastic surgery and is connected to Westing because he's engaged to Angela, who looks like Violet. Sydelle is a secretary for Shultz Sausages, but he can't find her connection to the Westings. The judge thinks it's weird, that Sydelle doesn't match.
  • At the hospital, the plastic surgeon checks on Angela, saying she should have an operation in two months. Dr. Deere says she shouldn't worry, he's the best. Angela thinks they should postpone the wedding, but doesn't say what she really wants.
  • Turtle runs in and Dr. Deere pulls her by the braid, saying no visitors. She kicks him hard, and he sends up people to escort her out.
  • Turtle asks Angela what she signed under "position"—Angela says "person" and Sydelle says "victim" – then she says that Angela shouldn't say anything to anyone before running out.
  • Ed Plum comes in to ask Angela how she is. Grace comes in right after, sees him, and starts screaming—because she thinks he's the murderer.
  • Back at Sunset Towers, Chris has three visitors. Otis brings him a letter to sign. Flora comes up and tells him about Rosalie. He knows she's sad. He wonders who he could've been if he wasn't in a wheelchair.
  • The third visitor, Dr. Deere, is limping, which makes Chris excited. Chris tells him Flora shared one of their clues, "mountain," but that they shouldn't tell Turtle.
  • Dr. Deere says the clues aren't as important as something else: he wants Chris to come with him to the hospital.
  • Chris can't say that he wants a friend, not a doctor. But Dr. Deere says there's no operation, he's just found an experimental treatment and he wants him to think about it.
  • Chris believes they're really partners, and says Dr. Deere can have the money, but the doctor isn't thinking about that. He takes Chris to the hospital, and Chris thinks it's the best time he's had in a while.