Ursula is woken by Bridget and Clarence’s noisy return from London. Ursula’s first instinct is to wake Pamela and to interrogate Bridget about the events, but a “great dread” washes over her—the same feeling she’d had when she followed Pamela into the sea on Holiday in Cornwall. Ursula doesn’t know why, but she knows that they mustn’t wake up and go downstairs.
Ursula’s pang of dread, like the ones she has during the incident with the ocean or the incident with Maurice throwing the doll, allow her to try to avoid previous mistakes, which Atkinson demonstrates allows her to live a longer life—once again demonstrating her own agency.
In the morning, Bridget is very sick. Sylvie goes to call Dr. Fellowes and tells Mrs. Glover to watch the children, as she doesn’t want them to go to school. Mrs. Glover makes them do schoolwork at the table until the butcher’s boy, Fred Smith, arrives with a hare. The children all like Fred—Pamela had once declared that Maurice had a crush on Fred, and Mrs. Glover had slapped her with a whisk.
Mrs. Glover slapping Pamela for implying that Maurice is gay (despite the fact that this implication was unintentional) demonstrates the rigidity of gender expectations, as this society associated being gay with being less masculine.
It is only after the hare is stripped when anyone notices Teddy’s absence. Teddy doesn’t respond to his name being called, and Ursula looks in his favorite hiding spaces. She is unable to find him anywhere, and tries to bribe him with the promise of cake. Ursula grows more and more panicked searching for him, until only Bridget’s room is unexplored.
Ursula’s knowledge of her brother’s hiding spots, and her panic when she cannot find him, shows how deeply she reciprocates the love that she receives from Teddy—a love that continues to grow and motivate Ursula throughout the novel.
Ursula, despite all instinct, enters Bridget’s room and finds Teddy on Bridget’s bed. He says that he thought his airplane might make Bridget feel better—he had great faith in the healing power of toy trains and airplanes (and he wanted to be a pilot growing up). Ursula recognizes immediately that Bridget is dead, her skin the color of lilacs and her eyes wide open.
Ursula’s love for Teddy proves so strong that she willingly puts herself in danger (knowing that she would likely contract influenza again) in order to try to rescue her brother from Bridget’s room.
At that moment, Sylvie and Dr. Fellowes come into Bridget’s room and pull the children into the hall. She frantically tells them to go to her room. Teddy dies by nightfall. Ursula feels the world fade around her, custard clogging her lungs. She takes one last breath, and the black bat approaches and enfolds her in its wings. Darkness falls.
Even with Ursula’s attempts to avoid her previous mistakes, she is unable to correct her fate. She realizes in the next life that she must preemptively avoid the cause of her death.