Kindred

Dana’s husband, a white man with eerily pale eyes. Kevin, like Dana, is a writer, and the two bond over their feelings of isolation and detachment from the other people in their machinery office. Kevin is an example of the progress that some white people have made in rejecting racism and treating people of color with respect, though he does not fully understand Dana’s background as a black woman. He and Dana do research her past, and Kevin supports Dana as much as possible when they are transported to the past together. In the Antebellum South, Kevin must come to grips with his own emphasized privilege as a white man and avoid becoming a monster who oppresses others to survive in this harsh time. Butler draws comparisons between Kevin, Rufus, and Tom, as these white men alternately help or harm other people using their privilege. Kevin works to free slaves using his relative safety as a white man and strives to protect Dana whenever possible.

Kevin Franklin Quotes in Kindred

The Kindred quotes below are all either spoken by Kevin Franklin or refer to Kevin Franklin. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
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). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Beacon Press edition of Kindred published in 2009.
Prologue Quotes

I lost an arm on my last trip home. My left arm.
And I lost about a year of my life and much of the comfort and security I had not valued until it was gone. When the police released Kevin, he came to the hospital and stayed with me so that I would know I hadn't lost him too.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin
Related Symbols: Dana’s Lost Left Arm
Page Number: 9
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 1: The River Quotes

"I'm beginning to feel as though I'm humoring myself."
"What do you mean?"
"I don't know. As real as the whole episode was, as real as I know it was, it's beginning to recede from me somehow. It's becoming like something I saw on television or read about—like something I got second hand."

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin
Page Number: 17
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 3: The Fall Quotes

He had written and published three novels, he told me, and outside members of his family, he'd never met anyone who'd read one of them. They'd brought so little money that he'd gone on taking mindless jobs like this one at the warehouse, and he'd gone on writing—unreasonably, against the advice of saner people. He was like me—a kindred spirit crazy enough to keep on trying.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin
Page Number: 57
Explanation and Analysis:
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A place like this would endanger him in a way I didn't want to talk to him about. If he was stranded here for years, some part of this place would rub off on him. No large part, I knew. But if he survived here, it would be because he managed to tolerate the life here.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin
Page Number: 77
Explanation and Analysis:
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"This could be a great time to live in," Kevin said once. "I keep thinking what an experience it would be to stay in it—go West and watch the building of the country, see how much of the Old West mythology is true."
"West," I said bitterly. "That's where they're doing it to the Indians instead of the blacks!"
He looked at me strangely. He had been doing that a lot lately.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin (speaker)
Page Number: 97
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 4: The Fight Quotes

“She doesn't care much for white people, but she prefers light-skinned blacks. Figure that out. Anyway, she ‘forgives’ me for you. But my uncle doesn't. He's sort of taken this personally.”
“Personally, how?”
“He ... well, he's my mother's oldest brother, and he was like a father to me even before my mother died because my father died when I was a baby. Now ... it's as though I've rejected him. Or at least that's the way he feels. It bothered me, really. He was more hurt than mad.”

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin (speaker)
Page Number: 111
Explanation and Analysis:
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Then, somehow, I got caught up in one of Kevin's World War II books—a book of excerpts from the recollections of concentration camp survivors. Stories of beatings, starvation, filth, disease, torture, every possible degradation. As though the Germans had been trying to do in only a few years what the Americans had worked at for nearly two hundred.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin (speaker)
Page Number: 116-117
Explanation and Analysis:
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I said nothing. I was beginning to realize that he loved the woman—to her misfortune. There was no shame in raping a black woman, but there could be shame in loving one.
"I didn't want to just drag her off into the bushes," said Rufus. "I never wanted it to be like that. But she kept saying no. I could have had her in the bushes years ago if that was all I wanted."
"I know," I said.
"If I lived in your time, I would have married her. Or tried to."

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Rufus Weylin (speaker), Kevin Franklin, Alice Jackson (Greenwood)
Page Number: 124
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 5: The Storm Quotes

"Christ," he muttered. "If I'm not home yet, maybe I don't have a home."… I could recall walking along the narrow dirt road that ran past the Weylin house and seeing the house, shadowy in twilight, boxy and familiar… I could recall feeling relief at seeing the house, feeling that I had come home. And having to stop and correct myself, remind myself that I was in an alien, dangerous place. I could recall being surprised that I would come to think of such a place as home.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin (speaker)
Page Number: 190
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 6: The Rope Quotes

"I'm not property, Kevin. I'm not a horse or a sack of wheat. If I have to seem to be property, if I have to accept limits on my freedom for Rufus's sake, then he also has to accept limits - on his behavior toward me. He has to leave me enough control of my own life to make living look better to me than killing and dying."
"If your black ancestors had felt that way, you wouldn't be here," said Kevin.
"I told you when all this started that I didn't have their endurance. I still don't. Some of them will go on struggling to survive, no matter what. I'm not like that."

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin (speaker), Rufus Weylin
Page Number: 246
Explanation and Analysis:
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I ate a little, then went away to the library where I could be alone, where I would write. Sometimes I wrote things because I couldn't say them, couldn't sort out my feelings about them, couldn't keep them bottled up inside me. It was a kind of writing I always destroyed afterward. It was for no one else. Not even Kevin.

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin
Page Number: 252
Explanation and Analysis:
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Epilogue Quotes

"I wonder whether the children were allowed to stay together—maybe stay with Sarah."
"You've looked," he said. "And you've found no records. You'll probably never know."
I touched the scar Tom Weylin's boot had left on my face, touched my empty left sleeve. "I know," I repeated. "Why did I even want to come here. You'd think I would have had enough of the past."
"You probably needed to come for the same reason I did." He shrugged. "To try to understand. To touch solid evidence that those people existed.”

Related Characters: Dana (Edana) Franklin (speaker), Kevin Franklin (speaker), Tom Weylin
Related Symbols: Dana’s Lost Left Arm
Page Number: 264
Explanation and Analysis:
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Kevin Franklin Character Timeline in Kindred

The timeline below shows where the character Kevin Franklin appears in Kindred. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Prologue
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...how she lost her left arm “coming home,” and says that she wants to see Kevin to reassure herself in the hospital. The police interrogate her about how she hurt her... (full context)
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When the narrator finally wakes up fully, Kevin (her husband) is next to her bedside. He explains that they had to amputate her... (full context)
Chapter 1: The River
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...for her on June 9th, 1976, her twenty-sixth birthday, when she met Rufus. Dana and Kevin were busy moving to their new house, though Kevin stops unpacking to go to his... (full context)
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...the nausea returns and Dana’s vision blurs. She finds herself back in the office with Kevin, covered in mud and across the room from where she had been before. (full context)
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Dana calls Kevin’s name, and he spins around in fear, asking how Dana had managed to teleport across... (full context)
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Kevin listens calmly as Dana explains what happened. When she finishes, Kevin tells Dana that she... (full context)
Chapter 2: The Fire
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...transported from the shower and refuses to leave the house for a birthday dinner with Kevin. Kevin brings food back for her and they eat in the kitchen. As Dana eats... (full context)
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...Dana adds that her husband is waiting for her at home, letting her longing for Kevin bleed into her voice. Alice’s mother assumes that Dana was kidnapped by slave catchers in... (full context)
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...that the patroller is still there before realizing that she is safe in bed with Kevin by her side. Kevin asks what happened, telling Dana that she was gone for three... (full context)
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Kevin pushes for more details about Dana’s trip. She manages to tell him that she was... (full context)
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6. Dana wakes again, seeing that Kevin has cleaned the blood off of her and tied a canvas bag with clothing and... (full context)
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Kevin assures Dana that he believes her and begins to think of ways to protect Dana... (full context)
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...concerned by all the horrible things she has read about in the experiences of slaves. Kevin suggests that Dana pose as a free black person, and the couple begin researching what... (full context)
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Kevin reminds Dana to tie the emergency bag back to her wrist, then wonders aloud how... (full context)
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Kevin is excited to understand how the time travel works, but Dana is upset that death... (full context)
Chapter 3: The Fall
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1. When Dana first met Kevin, she was working for a casual labor agency – which the regulars called the “slave... (full context)
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Kevin tries to talk to Dana, though Dana doesn’t want to get in trouble for slacking... (full context)
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Buz teases Dana for meeting up with Kevin to talk about writing, but Dana looks forward to having lunch with Kevin. Kevin animatedly... (full context)
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Dana tells Kevin that her aunt and uncle want her to take sensible classes and write on the... (full context)
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Kevin and Dana eat lunch together the next week and talk about their novels, their families,... (full context)
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2. Back in the present, Dana is too worried to go to the library with Kevin so she stays home while Kevin leaves to look for records of certificates of freedom.... (full context)
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...for leaving Rufus behind. Rufus responds that it depends what mood Tom Weylin is in. Kevin then introduces himself, explaining that Dana is his wife. Rufus is aghast at the thought... (full context)
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Rufus is confused that Kevin and Dana can marry, as blacks and whites are not allowed to marry in his... (full context)
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...Tom arrives with a wagon, Nigel, and an older black man. Tom is suspicious of Kevin and Dana, but lets Kevin explain that he and Dana simply came across Rufus and... (full context)
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Tom has a quiet conversation with Kevin, then turns to go without offering hospitality to Kevin and Dana. Rufus pleads with his... (full context)
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Dana and Kevin ride in the back of the wagon, watching slaves in the fields as the wagon... (full context)
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...woman, Margaret, before she can lash out at Dana, and explains that Dana “belongs” to Kevin Franklin, the man who found Rufus when he got hurt. Tom leaves the room and... (full context)
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...reason she has been met with so much hostility. Dana makes up an excuse, blaming Kevin for not giving her proper women’s clothing. (full context)
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...mush but stays in the cookhouse because she is worried about being too far from Kevin in the main house if she starts to feel dizzy enough to go back to... (full context)
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After a couple hours, Kevin calls to Dana from the yard. Dana forces herself not to show how eager she... (full context)
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Dana warns Kevin to come quick if he ever hears her calling, fearing that Kevin would be stuck... (full context)
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Dana asks after Rufus, and Kevin assures her that the doctor thinks Rufus will be all right. Kevin himself has scratches... (full context)
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Kevin and Dana get their story straight, deciding that Kevin is a writer from New York... (full context)
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...the house and complains about the way that Dana does every chore. Dana hides in Kevin’s room when she can, but she has to sleep on a mat in the attic.... (full context)
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Kevin wants to test his theory that Dana goes home when she is scared for her... (full context)
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...to him, if she really knows how, and produces a copy of Robinson Crusoe that Kevin had brought in for him. Dana begins to read, getting involved in the story even... (full context)
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...Rufus. Dana forces herself to face Tom calmly, noticing that Tom’s eyes look similar to Kevin’s. Tom asks Dana how old she is and what year she was born, answers that... (full context)
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...the slaves what Tom Weylin will do to enforce obedience. Dana worries that sleeping in Kevin’s room – even if Kevin were to say that it was his orders – would... (full context)
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...and slaps her across the face for shaming the Weylins’ Christian morals by sleeping in Kevin’s room. Unsure how to react, Dana stays silent and goes on sweeping while watching Margaret... (full context)
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...goes about her work that day wondering if Tom will punish her for sleeping with Kevin. She finishes her tasks and goes to find Sarah in the cookhouse. Sarah greets Dana... (full context)
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Sarah warns Dana not to cross Margaret anymore, suggesting that Dana should make Kevin let her sleep in the attic again. Sarah hints that she knows that Dana can... (full context)
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...so. Dana even sees Tom in the hall one morning as she stumbles out of Kevin’s room, but Tom just winks. As time passes, Dana and Kevin become more integrated into... (full context)
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...are found out, Dana agrees. After thinking over Nigel’s request, Dana realizes that she and Kevin are still just play-acting at being part of this time period, while people like Nigel... (full context)
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On a miserably hot day, Kevin and Dana walk to the woods to have a private moment together. On the way,... (full context)
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Kevin goes further to say that the plantation is better than he expected, though he doesn’t... (full context)
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...book in her hand. Knowing she is in for a harsh beating, Dana wonders where Kevin is. Tom knocks Dana to the floor and drags her to the door as Dana... (full context)
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...the thought of death if it means ending the pain. Through blurred vision, Dana sees Kevin racing over from across the yard. As the dizziness takes over, Dana reaches towards Kevin,... (full context)
Chapter 4: The Fight
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1. Dana and Kevin never officially moved in together while they were dating, simply switching off nights at their... (full context)
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Dana is surprised by the thought of marriage, asking Kevin if his family would be opposed to him marrying her. Kevin has no close family... (full context)
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Kevin is shocked when his sister threatens to cut off contact with Kevin if he marries... (full context)
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...up on the floor of her bathroom in 1976 with her back on fire and Kevin nowhere to be found. She gingerly gets up and fills the bathtub with warm water.... (full context)
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...transports again from an unknown location. The cousin comes quickly with food, immediately assuming that Kevin has been abusive when she sees the bruises on Dana’s face and body. The cousin... (full context)
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...accounts of “happy darkies” presented in books like Gone With the Wind. Finally, Dana finds Kevin’s World War II books and identifies strongly with the horrible suffering of the Jewish people,... (full context)
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...to save Rufus because he is perhaps the only person who can help her find Kevin. (full context)
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...travel. Isaac refuses this, and turns to go. Before they leave, Alice tells Dana that Kevin waited for a long time but eventually went North. Dana wonders how she will find... (full context)
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...then Rufus’s tone softens as he tells Dana that he told Alice about Dana and Kevin’s marriage to try to convince Alice to leave Isaac for him. Dana realizes that Rufus... (full context)
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...Tom is not grateful for Dana’s help with his son, but surprisingly tells Dana that Kevin went North and has written some letters to Rufus. Tom also allows Dana to stay... (full context)
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...good mood, and chatters to Dana that she still looks so young. Dana asks about Kevin, and Rufus points to Kevin’s letters in his desk, still trying to wrap his head... (full context)
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Kevin’s letters are sent from addresses in Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. In the most recent... (full context)
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Dana sits down at Rufus’s desk to write a letter to Kevin using her ball-point pen. Rufus is intrigued by the pen and Dana allows him to... (full context)
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...though this makes her think of Nazi book burnings. She then seals her letter to Kevin and hands it to Rufus to send. Rufus tells Dana that he won’t send it... (full context)
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...replies yes. Dana doses Alice with modern sleeping pills in Rufus’s bed and hopes that Kevin comes soon. Dana is then shocked when Rufus climbs in bed with Alice, but Rufus... (full context)
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...and Dana hope that Rufus will treat Alice kindly, and Sarah asks if Dana and Kevin are really married. Sarah says that Kevin got in trouble during Dana’s absence for treating... (full context)
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...with Dana. Dana corners Rufus in the hall and demands to write another letter to Kevin. Tom overhears, and becomes angry that Rufus let Dana write a letter herself. (full context)
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...her again. Rufus gets angry and compares his love for Alice to Dana’s feelings for Kevin, then plays to Dana’s fears by suggesting that Kevin may have found a white woman... (full context)
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The previous night in the attic, Alice had told Dana to write another letter to Kevin, but then viciously insulted Dana for loving a white man. Dana thinks that Alice is... (full context)
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...she seems to die a little after sharing his bed. Dana sends another letter to Kevin, but a month passes without a reply. Rufus is far happier, though he still hits... (full context)
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...the dangers of the road. Finally, Alice brings Dana the letters she had written to Kevin with their seals broken. Rufus clearly never sent them. Dana packs her denim bag and... (full context)
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15. When Dana is well enough to get up, Rufus brings Dana a letter from Kevin. Tom wrote to Kevin on Dana’s behalf after finding out that Rufus never sent Dana’s... (full context)
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...to run. Rufus finally agrees, admitting that he respects Tom for sending a letter to Kevin and keeping his word to a black person just as if they were white. (full context)
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...to tell the visitor that the Weylins aren’t home, then realizes that the man is Kevin. Kevin leaps off the horse once he sees Dana and pulls her into a hug.... (full context)
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Dana tells Kevin they should leave now while they have a chance, and then notices Alice looking on... (full context)
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...laundry turn into the sound of hoof beats as Rufus rides up in front of Kevin. He asks Kevin and Dana to at least stay for dinner and say a proper... (full context)
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...of Rufus the way she is afraid of Tom. With Rufus pointing the rifle at Kevin, Kevin and Dana get down from the horse. Rufus speaks soothingly, saying that his father... (full context)
Chapter 5: The Storm
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1. Dana comes to on the living room floor with Kevin crouched over her, and is overwhelmed by the knowledge that they are home. Kevin apologizes... (full context)
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Dana wakes up and hears Kevin in the kitchen, noticing that he now has a slight accent similar to Tom and... (full context)
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Dana joins Kevin in the living room, where he is fiddling with the knobs on the TV. Dana... (full context)
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Kevin explains that he grew his beard to hide his identity after being chased out of... (full context)
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Kevin putters around his office, then angrily slams his fist on his typewriter. Dana recalls how... (full context)
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...knife to replace the knife she lost while trying to run away. She wonders if Kevin will ever be able to write again, and if he blames her for the years... (full context)
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Kevin comes into the kitchen and asks how long Dana has been gone this time. He... (full context)
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...Dana wakes to see a white face and hopes for a moment that it is Kevin, but it is only Rufus. Rufus helps her up, telling her that she should walk... (full context)
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After the party people begin to couple off, and Dana misses Kevin. Rufus comes over and asks if Dana has found anyone to “jump the broom” with.... (full context)
Chapter 6: The Rope
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1. Dana wakes in her own bed at home with her wrists heavily bandaged and Kevin asleep beside her. Kevin wakes and gently scolds Dana for doing something so dangerous to... (full context)
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Dana fills Kevin in on the details of Hagar’s birth, Tom’s death, and the changes in Rufus’s personality.... (full context)
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2. Dana and Kevin enjoy 15 days together, long enough for the couple to come back together and heal... (full context)
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Kevin misreads Dana’s unease as eagerness to return to the Weylin estate, and suspects a relationship... (full context)
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3. On the Fourth of July, Kevin and Dana have friends over, but Dana refuses to go with them to watch the... (full context)
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...take care of Alice’s children. Dana reminds Rufus that she has to get home to Kevin. Dana knows that, even if Rufus promises never to hurt her, eventually Rufus will lash... (full context)
Epilogue
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Kevin and Dana fly to Maryland as soon as Dana’s arm is healed enough. They drive... (full context)
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At the Historical Society of Baltimore, Kevin and Dana research any mention of Margaret and Hagar together in Baltimore. Dana hopes that... (full context)
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...the pain that her trips to the past caused for Nigel, Sarah, and the others. Kevin reminds her that there’s nothing they can do now. They look at the records, appreciating... (full context)