Beneath a Scarlet Sky


Mark Sullivan

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Beneath a Scarlet Sky: Chapter 11 Summary & Analysis

Pino yells his brother’s name and Mimo eventually answers. With the help of Mr. D’Angelo, the father of the family he is escorting, Pino manages to pull Mimo back up to safety. Shortly afterwards, the group is through the worst of their trip, but the weather continues to worsen. Pino takes the group to a nearby shepherd’s hut, and they all huddle inside to rest and get warm. Everyone sleeps for a few hours before waking up to the sound of an avalanche. Once the sound stops, Pino opens the door to the hut to find that they have been snowed in.
An already extreme test of will is made even worse by the bad weather that accompanies it. Although Pino is smart to take his group to shelter, he’s inadvertently put them in even more danger, as is evidenced by the avalanche.
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The group begins to panic, including Mimo. However, Pino takes charge and asks the men to help him clear the snow. The process is long and arduous, but eventually they feel a draft and know they are getting close. They spend the rest of the day digging and finally make their way out. However, Pino decides it is best for them to spend the night in the hut so that they can properly rest before completing their journey.
Again, Pino shows poise and leadership through an intense situation where acting differently could likely result in his death. Although Pino’s decision to rest is the only viable option, it also puts the group a day behind schedule.
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Upon emerging from the hut, Pino points out the Val di Lei and tells the others that they have roughly five kilometers to go. Mrs. Napolitano insists that she cannot go any further without potentially losing her baby. However, Pino comes up with an idea. He tells Mrs. Napolitano to get on his back and he skis her the rest of the way. At first, Mrs. Napolitano is terrified by the idea, but quickly realizes that she loves it. She laughs most of the time and when the skiing is done, she thanks Pino for the experience.
The physical (and perhaps mental) stress has finally caught up to Mrs. Napolitano who cannot in good conscience go any further. However, Pino once again demonstrates his ingenuity and his vastly improved physical strength by carrying Mrs. Napolitano to the destination on skis. He turns one of the worst moments of Mrs. Napolitano’s life into one of the best. 
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Pino comes to a stop near Mr. Bergstrom who is concerned that the group is a day late. Pino explains the situation to Mr. Bergstrom and Mr. Bergstrom assures Mrs. Napolitano that she doesn’t have much further to go. Additionally, Mrs. Napolitano has begun to feel better after the skiing. Mr. Bergstrom, Pino, and Mrs. Napolitano wait and watch as the D’Angelos make their way to them. Once the group arrives, Pino and Mimo say their goodbyes. As they depart, Pino asks Mrs. Napolitano if she would play “Nessun Dorma” for them on her violin. She does so as Pino and Mimo make their way back to Casa Alpina.
Although it was not easy, Pino and Mimo’s mission is ultimately a success, largely thanks to Pino’s leadership. However, even though Mrs. Napolitano and the D’Angelos are safe, Pino and Mimo are only halfway done with their mission. Now, they must return home. They are given the strength to do so from “Nessun Dorma,” the same song Michele sang during the Lellas’ overnight trip to the countryside several months before.
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