Ursula and Jimmy spend a few days together in London while he is on leave. When they’re on the town, accompanied by his friend Nicky, she sees Renee Miller, one of her old neighbors in Argyll Road. Renee announces that Mrs. Appleyard has had a baby. Renee invites her to come back to see everyone, and Ursula promises that she will—particularly as she has just received a parcel of baby clothes from Pamela and can donate them.
Even when Ursula is no longer living at Argyll Road, there is a slight implication that fate pulls her back there to experience the bombing of the previous chapter. Yet this sense of fate is perhaps false, as even when Ursula gets out of London altogether, the war’s atrocities remain inescapable.
Ursula is exceptionally busy at work, logging all of the bomb incidents, their damage, and how many were killed or injured. Sometimes she sees bomb-damaged maps drawn by a friend, Ralph—who had made it clear that he wanted them to mean more to each other. Crighton calls Ralph her “other man.”
While many of Ursula’s alternate possibilities see her trying to avert a bad option or choose a better one, she appears genuinely happy with both Ralph and Crighton—perhaps because she is not constrained to societal expectations of how she should act in relationships with them, and because they treat her as equals.
Ursula arrives at Argyll road with the baby clothes, and Mrs. Appleyard introduces her to Emil. Ursula then goes to visit Ruth and Lavinia, who are very excited to see that Ursula has a wedding ring. Ursula goes along with their assumption, thinking that it is easier than explaining the truth.
Again Ursula, has a difficult time defying societal expectations publicly, even though it is easier for her to do so privately. And so rather than explaining the truth, she continues with her fabrication.
At that moment, a siren begins, and Ursula, Ruth, and Lavinia start to make their way to the cellar. Lavinia announces she must go back for her knitting. Ursula offers to do it instead, but Lavinia insists. In the basement, Ursula realizes that if she died, her family would be very confused by the presence of her wedding ring. She is prevented from slipping it off, however, when Renee thrusts Emil into her arms.
Ursula tries to change Lavinia’s trajectory, but Lavinia’s willpower overpowers Ursula’s own. Thus, even though Ursula tries to choose a different fate for herself, this fate proves to be sturdy and harder to avoid (just like Bridget’s earlier desire to go to London to celebrate the armistice).
In the darkness, a man (Mr. Emslie) calls her “Susie.” Ursula chokes on ash and dust, sensing that something inside her was “torn beyond repair.” She is very cold. The man holds her hand, imploring her to stay awake. But the snow begins to fall until she feels entirely shrouded and everything is darkness.
Like Bridget’s choice in the Armistice chapters, Lavinia’s choice to go upstairs leads Ursula the same tragic fate, demonstrating the large effect that even a small detail—like forgetting one’s knitting—can have on the lives of others.