My Cousin Rachel

by

Daphne du Maurier

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Rachel Ashley Character Analysis

Rachel Ashley is the novel’s mysterious anti-heroine. Though she grew up in Italy, Rachel is distantly related to the Ashley family, having been born of an English father and an Italian mother. Rachel’s father, a heavy spender, died when she was sixteen, leaving his wife and daughter penniless. Rachel married the Count Sangalletti when she was twenty-one, and, after his death, took Ambrose Ashley as a second husband. After Ambrose’s death, Rachel returns to England and takes up residence at the Ashley estate in Cornwall, where she befriends and ultimately seduces Philip Ashley. At thirty-five, Rachel is perceptive, self-assured, and fully comfortable with her open sexuality. Though small in stature, Rachel has a bold personality and is physically distinguished by her fine eyes and her delicate hands. Du Maurier never reveals whether Rachel is guilty of having murdered her husbands, and attempting to kill Philip via poison. However, the author also refuses to completely demonize Rachel, instead rendering her as a complex, complete, and captivating character. Because the novel is narrated from Philip’s perspective, the reader is limited in how much they can know about Rachel, making her an even more elusive character.

Rachel Ashley Quotes in My Cousin Rachel

The My Cousin Rachel quotes below are all either spoken by Rachel Ashley or refer to Rachel Ashley. 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:
Guilt Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Sourcebooks edition of My Cousin Rachel published in 2009.
Chapter 1 Quotes

How soft and gentle her name sounds when I whisper it. It lingers on the tongue, insidious and slow, almost like poison, which is apt indeed. It passes from the tongue to the parched lips, and from the lips back to the heart. And the heart controls the body, and the mind also. Shall I be free of it one day? In forty, in fifty years? […] Perhaps, when all is said and done, I shall have no wish to be free. As yet, I cannot tell.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 9
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 7 Quotes

I don’t know what I thought to see. Something bold, perhaps, with loops and flourishes; or its reverse, darkly scrawled and mean. This was just handwriting, much like any other, except that the ends of the words tailed off in little dashes, making the words themselves not altogether easy to decipher.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Nick Kendall
Related Symbols: Letters
Page Number: 73
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 8 Quotes

Somewhere there was a bitter creature, crabbed and old, hemmed about with lawyers; somewhere a larger Mrs. Pascoe, loud-voiced, arrogant; somewhere a petulant spoilt doll, with corkscrew curls; somewhere a viper, sinuous and silent. But none of them was with me in this room. Anger seemed futile now, and hatred too, and as for fear—how could I fear anyone who did not measure up to my shoulder, and had nothing remarkable about her save a sense of humour and small hands?

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Mrs. Pascoe
Related Symbols: Rachel’s Hands
Page Number: 101
Explanation and Analysis:

Once, not so long ago, I had seen other eyes with that same age-old look of suffering. Those eyes too had held reserve and pride, coupled with the same abasement, the same agony of supplication […] it must be because the eyes are the same colour and they belong to the same race. Otherwise they could have nothing in common, the beggar woman beside the Arno and my cousin Rachel.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 103
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 10 Quotes

I looked up, startled, and it seemed to me, as we stared at one another, that she knew now all my fantasies, my dreams, that she saw one by one the faces of the women I had conjured all those months. Denial was no use, protestation absurd. The barriers were down. It was a queer feeling, as though I sat naked in my chair.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 119
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 11 Quotes

“Not unremarkable,” said Mr. Pascoe, flipping the head of a hortensia with his cane, “certainly not unremarkable. Nor would I say, as the girls do, beautiful. But feminine, that is the word, most decidedly feminine.”

Related Characters: Mr. Hubert Pascoe (speaker), Philip Ashley, Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 139
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 12 Quotes

“Ambrose was wrong in what he said of women,” I shouted. “At half-past eight in the morning they look very well indeed.”

“Ambrose was not referring to half-past eight,” she called back to me; “he was referring to half-past six, and he did not mean downstairs.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 154
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 13 Quotes

The voice, so near to tears again, did something to me. A kind of tightness came to my throat and to my belly.

“I would much rather that you hit me,” I told her, “than that you cried.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 169
Explanation and Analysis:

The little girl look and the choir-boy surplice had misled me. She was a woman all the time.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 173
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 14 Quotes

“There is a tisana for that too,” she said, “made from the leaves of raspberries and of nettles. If a woman drinks that for six months before the birth, she has her baby without pain.”

“That’s witchcraft,” I said. “They wouldn’t think it right to do so.”

“What nonsense! Why should women suffer?” said my cousin Rachel.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker)
Page Number: 177
Explanation and Analysis:

I hoped she had not noticed—I had barely noticed it myself—that for the first time I had not called her cousin, but Rachel. I don’t know how it happened. I think it must have been because standing there, with my arms about her, she had been so much smaller than myself.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 187
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 15 Quotes

I felt strangely moved, as if all that I did and said was laid down for me and planned, while at the same time a small still voice whispered to me in some dark cell of matter, “You can never go back upon this moment. Never… Never…”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 202-3
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 16 Quotes

She would take great care about her person, when she went calling. Her best mantle, and her new veil and bonnet. I would sit with my back to the horses, in the carriage, so that I could look at her; and, I think to tease me, she would not lift her veil.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 207
Explanation and Analysis:

Her shoulders were bare. She had dressed her hair higher than usual, the roll of it was looped up and drawn back, showing her ears. Around her neck was the collar of pearls. It was the only piece of jewellery [sic] upon her person. It glowed soft and white against her skin. I had never seen her look so radiant, or so happy. Louise and the Pascoes had been right after all. Rachel was beautiful.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Louise Kendall
Related Symbols: Pearl Collar
Page Number: 219
Explanation and Analysis:

Then she kissed me. Not as she had done before. And as I stood there, holding her, I thought to myself, “It was not yearning for home, nor sickness of the blood, nor fever of the brain—but for this, that Ambrose died.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 219
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 19 Quotes

And I could see them sitting on the terrace of the villa, with this strange shadow between them, built out of nothing but their own doubts and fears, and it seemed to me that the seeds of this same shadow went back beyond all reckoning and could never more be traced.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 253
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 22 Quotes

She lifted her veil, and the eyes that looked into mine were not smiling as I had hoped, or tearful as I had feared, but steady and serene and quite unmoved, the eyes of someone who has been out upon a matter of business and settled it to satisfaction.

For no great reason I felt blank, and in some sense cheated. I wanted the eyes to be as I remember them at sunrise.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 303
Explanation and Analysis:

She did not answer. She went on looking at me, incredulous, baffled, like someone listening to words in a foreign language that cannot be translated or comprehended […] She had not understood what it was I asked of her at midnight, nor I, in my blind wonder, what she had given, therefore what I had believed to be a pledge of love was something different, without meaning, on which she had put her own interpretation.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 313
Explanation and Analysis:

I tried to think what else I had to give. She had the property, the money, and the jewels. She had my mind, my body, and my heart. There was only my name, and that she bore already. Nothing remained. Unless it should be fear. I took the candle from her hand and placed it on the ledge, above the stairs. I put my hands about her throat, encircling it; and now she could not move, but watched me, her eyes wide. And it was as though I held a frightened bird in my two hands, which, with added pressure, would flutter awhile, and die, and with release would fly away to freedom.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 314
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 23 Quotes

I could not believe it possible that a girl I knew and trusted could have so damnable a mind, and speak—that was the greatest hell—with so much logic and plain common sense, to tear apart another woman like herself.

“Is it your father’s legal mind speaking in you, or you yourself?” I said to her.

“Not my father,” she said; “you know his reserve. He has said little to me. I have a judgement [sic] of my own.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Louise Kendall (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Nick Kendall
Page Number: 321
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 25 Quotes

So we had come to battle. Her words were a challenge that I could not meet. Her woman’s brain worked differently from mine. All argument was fair, all blows were foul. Physical strength alone disarmed a woman.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 357
Explanation and Analysis:

Then, tears coming to her eyes, she looked at me and said, “A woman can’t suffer twice. I have had all this before.” And lifting her fingers to her throat she added, “Even the hands around my neck. That too. Now will you understand?”

I looked over her head, straight at the portrait above the mantelpiece, and the young face of Ambrose staring at me was my own. She had defeated both of us.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 358
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 26 Quotes

As I lay there in the darkness I was not aware of danger, or of fear. Only compassion. I saw her as someone not responsible for what she did, besmirched by evil. Compelled and driven by the man who had power over her, lacking, through fault of circumstance and birth, in some deep moral sense, she was capable by instinct and by impulse of this final act. I wanted to save her from herself, and knew not how.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Signor Rainaldi
Page Number: 370
Explanation and Analysis:

I had held it many times, in love, before. Felt the small size of it, turned the rings upon the fingers, seen the blue veins upon the back, touched the small close-filed nails. Now, as it rested in my hand, I saw it, for the first time, put to another purpose. I saw it take the laburnum pods, in deft fashion, and empty out the seeds […] I remembered once I had told her that her hands were beautiful, and she had answered, with a laugh, that I was the first to tell her so. “They have their uses,” she said. “Ambrose used to say, when I was gardening, that they were workmen’s hands.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Related Symbols: Rachel’s Hands
Page Number: 371
Explanation and Analysis:

Now, no part of her was strange. I knew the best, I knew the worst. Even the motives for all she did, baffling perhaps even to herself, I guessed them too. She hid nothing for me now, Rachel my torment…

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 375
Explanation and Analysis:

Her head was turned to him as she listened, so that from the head of the table, where I sat, I looked on her in profile. She was always a stranger, thus. Those neat clipped features on a coin. Dark and withdrawn, a foreign woman standing in a doorway, a shawl about her head, her hand outstretched. But full-face, when she smiled, a stranger never. The Rachel that I knew, that I had loved.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Nick Kendall
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 378
Explanation and Analysis:
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My Cousin Rachel PDF

Rachel Ashley Character Timeline in My Cousin Rachel

The timeline below shows where the character Rachel Ashley appears in My Cousin Rachel. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
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...life story. Philip is also troubled by something having to do with a woman named Rachel; he says the question of whether Rachel was “innocent or guilty” haunts him every day.... (full context)
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This leads Philip to think about two warnings he did receive about Rachel, who is revealed to be his cousin. One warning came from a man called Rainaldi... (full context)
Chapter 2
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...from Florence, and mentions, for the first time, a woman he refers to as “cousin Rachel. Rachel is distantly related to the Ashleys, and is a widow of an Italian nobleman... (full context)
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In another letter, Ambrose continues to praise Rachel, saying: “She is extremely intelligent but, thank the Lord, knows when to hold her tongue.... (full context)
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...months, Philip receives an Easter letter from him. In it, Ambrose announces that he and Rachel were married two weeks earlier and are now in Naples on their honeymoon. Ambrose writes:... (full context)
Chapter 3
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...conversation with his childhood friend Louise Kendall, Philip reacts particularly snappishly to the topic of Rachel. This prompts Louise to ask Philip, “You aren’t jealous, are you, by any chance?” Philip... (full context)
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Philip finds himself miserably imagining what Rachel will be like. He hates all the versions of her he invents, from “middle-aged and... (full context)
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Mrs. Pascoe’s comment causes Philip to imagine yet another version of Rachel: “The nursery receded, and I saw the drawing-room become a lady’s boudoir […] and someone... (full context)
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...a man but ten months married.” Philip notices that Ambrose’s tone when he writes about Rachel has become suddenly “formal […] and cold.” Ambrose also mentions that he has been experiencing... (full context)
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...none of his Italian doctors, all recommended by someone named Rainaldi; he also says that Rachel “watches [him] all the time,” and it is “better [to] keep silent.” Alarmed, Philip shows... (full context)
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...reads: “For God’s sake come to me quickly. She has done for me at last, Rachel my torment. If you delay, it may be too late.” Philip is devastated by the... (full context)
Chapter 4
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...speaks English. Giuseppe tells Philip that Ambrose died suddenly three weeks ago. Upon Ambrose’s death, Rachel “shut up the villa […and] went away.” Rachel has been gone for two weeks, and... (full context)
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...child. He shows Philip a courtyard with a fountain where Ambrose used to sit with Rachel in the evenings to “take their tisana” (a type of herbal tea). Philip, still in... (full context)
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...has been done with Ambrose’s belongings, Giuseppe’s wife (with her husband as translator) explains that Rachel took all of Ambrose’s things with her when she left. Giuseppe adds that all that... (full context)
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...villa, Giuseppe’s wife runs into their home and returns with Ambrose’s hat, the one thing Rachel left behind. Philip silently turns it over in his hands, reflecting that it is too... (full context)
Chapter 5
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...immediately wary of Rainaldi’s “dark and deep-set” eyes and “disdainful” demeanor. The two men discuss Rachel’s departure, and Philip makes the “bold move” of showing Rainaldi Ambrose’s last two letters, in... (full context)
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Philip demands more answers from Rainaldi: why didn’t Rachel contact him, Philip asks, when Ambrose fell ill? Rainaldi replies that “a woman of feeling... (full context)
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...[him],” he believes, no matter where his body is buried. Philip tells Rainaldi to inform Rachel of his visit, but Rainaldi replies that Rachel is “a woman of impulse,” and that... (full context)
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...than in Rainaldi’s version of events. He then makes a vow to seek revenge on Rachel. He thinks: “Whatever it had cost Ambrose in pain and suffering before he died, I... (full context)
Chapter 6
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...to be home; on his return journey, he felt haunted by images of the “monstrous” Rachel, but now the images have “vanished as nightmares do at break of day.” Philip is... (full context)
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...then recounts for Nick Kendall his visit to Rainaldi. He bitterly informs his godfather of Rachel’s departure from the villa, saying she “[went] off, like a thief, taking all Ambrose’s possessions... (full context)
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...and Louise talk privately. Louise is disappointed that Philip has not gleaned any information about Rachel’s appearance. Philip teases Louise, saying: “I ought to have taken you to Florence with me.... (full context)
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...his godfather’s the next day, he learns that his godfather has received a letter from Rachel, who has arrived by boat in Plymouth, England. (full context)
Chapter 7
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Nick Kendall shows Philip the letter from Rachel. In it, she provides an account of Ambrose’s death and also inquires as to what... (full context)
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...goes out to Nick Kendall’s summer-house to speak with Louise. Louise expresses her opinion that Rachel will find the Ashley home “untidy, dusty, [and] smelling like a kennel.” Offended, Philip insists... (full context)
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Philip informs Seecombe, the steward, that Rachel will be coming to stay. Seecombe is glad of the news, as he and the... (full context)
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Through Nick Kendall, Philip makes arrangements to send a carriage for Rachel on Friday. In the meantime, the servants are busy readying the house for her arrival,... (full context)
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Philip spends the afternoon out riding and walking, feeling anxious about Rachel’s arrival, as if he can already sense “an unknown hostile presence, stamping her personality upon... (full context)
Chapter 8
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Rachel calls Philip into her room, where she has been joined by his old retriever, Don,... (full context)
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Rachel insists that Ambrose “always intended [Philip] to have his room,” and that he would be... (full context)
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Rachel and Philip continuing talking, but Philip decides: “I had smiled at her once, I was... (full context)
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Sitting by the fire with Rachel, Philip finds himself unable to muster hatred for her. In fact, he is half asleep.... (full context)
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Before Philip leaves, Rachel gives him Ambrose’s old walking stick. She then pushes him from her room. Befuddled, Philip... (full context)
Chapter 9
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Philip rises early the next morning, and visits the stables, where he discusses Rachel’s wish to ride with Wellington, the coachman. Philip is rankled when Wellington asks what time... (full context)
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In the garden, Rachel cheerfully informs Philip that she brought to Plymouth “all the plants and shrubs that we... (full context)
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At the house, Rachel and Philip eat lunch together. Philip is impressed that Rachel “has a certain independence of... (full context)
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As they continue to walk, Rachel begins describing the Villa Sangalletti to Philip, and he realizes that Rachel does not know... (full context)
Chapter 10
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Rachel is shocked to learn that Philip was at the villa on August 15, the day... (full context)
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Rachel then asks why Philip invited her to his home, and he admits that it was... (full context)
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Rachel says she wishes Philip would go on condemning her, as “it would make it easier... (full context)
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Rachel and Philip go on talking, and Philip explains how jealous he was of Rachel when... (full context)
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Philip is confused. He asks whether Rachel means that Ambrose “put [her] on a sort of pedestal.” “No,” Rachel says. “I would... (full context)
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Philip assures Rachel that Ambrose could have just as easily fallen ill at home in Cornwall. The two... (full context)
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Rachel and Philip say goodnight on the stairwell, after assuring one another that their feelings of... (full context)
Chapter 11
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It is Sunday morning, and Philip and Rachel are going to church. Rachel is wearing a veiled hat that covers her face, and... (full context)
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Philip and Rachel arrive at church. Contrary to his expectations, Philip finds himself feeling “confident and proud, and... (full context)
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Outside the church, Rachel coyly suggests that she ride with Nick Kendall, while Philip rides with Louise. (It was... (full context)
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...and his daughters around the garden, while Mrs. Pascoe visits the blue room upstairs with Rachel. Philip enjoys professing that he finds Rachel “small and entirely unremarkable,” an opinion that is... (full context)
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As dinner draws to a close, Nick Kendall asks whether Philip reminds Rachel of Ambrose, and she replies, “So much so […] that I have wondered […] if... (full context)
Chapter 12
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As the dinner guests are leaving the Ashley house, Philip hears Kendall mention that Rachel will be coming to Pelyn. Philip “squash[es] the idea,” saying that Rachel will be staying... (full context)
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Philip insists he does not want to marry anyone, least of all Louise. Rachel insists that Louise would make an excellent wife, and Philip bids her “be quiet.” He... (full context)
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Rachel teases Philip by suggesting that he “make up a little list of rules” for her... (full context)
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Philip is immediately humiliated by his thoughtless comment to Rachel. He knows he will not be able to sleep because he will be kept awake... (full context)
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As he continues to walk, Philip hears Rachel’s voice calling to him from her open bedroom window. Though he would like to apologize,... (full context)
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On Thursday morning, Rachel’s Italian plants arrive from Plymouth, and Philip uses the opportunity to visit Nick Kendall at... (full context)
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...been remarking upon “how simple it must be for a woman of the world, like Mrs. Ashley , to twist a young man like [Philip] around her finger.” Philip leaves in a... (full context)
Chapter 13
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...bank. He finds a bowl of flowers in his room, which he assumes are from Rachel, and which “[add] to [his] mood of high good humour.” After bathing, Philip knocks on... (full context)
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After she finishes with her hair, Rachel drops a hairpin in Philip’s lap and tells him, “Put it under your pillow, and... (full context)
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After Rachel reads the letter, she and Philip have an argument. She maintains that he has humiliated... (full context)
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Philip dines alone, still furious at Rachel and surer than ever that he will never marry. After dining, he dozes awhile in... (full context)
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Philip goes to Rachel’s room and apologizes to her, saying that he “had no idea of patronising her.” From... (full context)
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Rachel says that she intends to leave for London on Monday, as she has already stayed... (full context)
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Philip convinces Rachel to stay by asking her to tend the gardens, as Ambrose would have wanted. Rachel... (full context)
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...deposit his letter in the post-bag in the hall, he finds two letters written by Rachel inside. The first is the letter Rachel claimed to have written to Kendall, accepting the... (full context)
Chapter 14
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The next morning, Philip joins Rachel while she works in the garden. The two again discuss whether Philip will marry. Philip... (full context)
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October arrives, and Rachel spends three weeks working in the garden. She and Philip also visit the tenants on... (full context)
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One night, when Rachel and Philip are talking in the library, Rachel mentions that the people of the neighborhood... (full context)
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Rachel and Philip continue a pattern of teasing and jealousy, respectively, always concluding their days with... (full context)
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...breaks, and—at Seecombe’s suggestion—Philip decides to spend one rainy morning going through Ambrose’s old things. Rachel joins him, and they begin by sorting through Ambrose’s clothes, which Rachel decides should be... (full context)
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Philip and Rachel move on to sorting through Ambrose’s books, chatting as they do so. Rachel is particularly... (full context)
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Rachel notices Philip has found something, but Philip insists it’s “nothing” and throws the letter in... (full context)
Chapter 15
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Philip and Rachel finish sorting through the books by late morning; Rachel declines Philip’s request for help arranging... (full context)
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During dinner, Seecombe asks whether Rachel has shown Philip the blue coverings she ordered for her bedroom. Philip looks at the... (full context)
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Distractedly, Philip asks Rachel whether she has lived her whole life in Italy, and Rachel gives an account of... (full context)
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Again, Rachel asks what was in the letter that Philip found, and he admits that Ambrose expressed... (full context)
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Rachel abruptly stops talking, and says that she wants Philip “to remember [Ambrose] as [he] knew... (full context)
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Philip assures Rachel that there is no need to speak of the past, and that she is home... (full context)
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Philip wishes that Rachel would rest her head on his chest, as she did that morning when she was... (full context)
Chapter 16
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...pass, and for the first time, Philip finds that “autumn [passes] without monotony.” Philip and Rachel fall into a comfortable pattern. In the mornings, she works in the garden while he... (full context)
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Rachel and Philip spend the evenings either in the library, with Philip as host, or in... (full context)
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...to vacillate between moods of “exultation and excitement” to “dullness and depression,” because he knows Rachel might decide to leave the estate at any moment. (full context)
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...the tenants on the estate. Philip arranges the decoration of a large Christmas tree, and Rachel plans the dinner menu; each keep their task secret from the other, giving the house... (full context)
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At the bank, Philip looks at the jewels but quickly remembers that Rachel will not wear colored stones because she is still in mourning for Ambrose. All seems... (full context)
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...and the Pascoes. On the night of the dinner, Philip leaves the pearl collar in Rachel’s room with a note asking her to “wear it tonight, and always.” When he is... (full context)
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Rachel comes downstairs dressed for the dinner, wearing the pearl collar. Philip is struck by the... (full context)
Chapter 17
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Philip and Rachel take their seats, and the dinner begins. Philip is charmed to find that Rachel has... (full context)
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...manner “abrupt”; he soon notices that his godfather’s eyes are glued to the pearl collar Rachel is wearing. Philip bristles at the implied criticism from his godfather, but says nothing. Philip... (full context)
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In the drawing room, Mrs. Pascoe compliments Rachel on the pearl collar. In response, Nick Kendall makes a cold comment about how much... (full context)
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Nick Kendall explains that Rachel has already overdrawn her account by several hundred pounds, and that he is worried she... (full context)
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...removing the pearl collar from the bank. He adds that he has learned more about Rachel’s past on a recent trip he made. He says that Rachel and her first husband,... (full context)
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Nick Kendall insists that Philip retrieve the pearl collar from Rachel and return it to the bank. When Philip refuses, Kendall says he will ask Rachel... (full context)
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Suddenly, Philip notices Rachel and Louise in the doorway. Rachel calmly gives the pearl collar to Nick Kendall, saying... (full context)
Chapter 18
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Philip and Rachel spend a pleasant Christmas Day together—but Philip is still angry with Nick Kendall over the... (full context)
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...the regular Sunday dinner that Ambrose traditionally held for the Pascoes and Kendalls. Philip and Rachel take to spending their evenings together in Rachel’s bedroom, and Philip is at once pleased... (full context)
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...writes that he is suffering from increasingly bad headaches. He reveals that, at four months, Rachel miscarried the child she had conceived with him, and that ever since she has shown... (full context)
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...he has drawn up an alternate will that bequeaths the Ashley house and estate to Rachel during her lifetime, with the caveat that Philip be in control of running the state,... (full context)
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...died of a brain tumor) experiencing. Ambrose is obsessed by a single thought: “Are they [Rachel and Rainaldi] trying to poison me?” (full context)
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Rachel is in the library tending to Don. She is distraught, and Philip finds he is... (full context)
Chapter 19
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Don dies around midnight. In Rachel’s bedroom, Rachel and Philip reminisce about Philip’s tenth birthday, when Ambrose gifted him with Don.... (full context)
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Rachel announces that she intends to leave the Ashley home after Philip’s birthday. Philip is unfazed... (full context)
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Rachel asks to drop the subject, but Philip forces the issue by asking her what happened... (full context)
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Philip asks a few more questions, and then tells Rachel that she will know his reason for asking them “in three weeks’ time.” Rachel replies,... (full context)
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When the lawyer points out that Philip has come up with no provision should Rachel remarry, Philip decides that in the case of remarriage, the property should revert to him.... (full context)
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...Philip returns home, he notices a carriage in the driveway. He goes inside and hears Rachel call him into the drawing room to see her visitor: Signor Rainaldi. (full context)
Chapter 20
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...and then Philip goes upstairs to dress for dinner. From his room, he can hear Rachel and Rainaldi talking in Italian. Philip’s earlier excitement has passed, and he is now filled... (full context)
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After dinner, Rachel and Rainaldi go up to her room to discuss their business; Philip declines Rachel’s invitation... (full context)
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...are alone together before dinner, Rainaldi says: “This change of air has done wonders for [Rachel], but I think before long she will feel the need of society, such as she... (full context)
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...he goes upstairs to dress for dinner, Rainaldi tells Philip that the “strong medicine” of Rachel’s presence, “taken in so large a dose, […] could do damage.” When Philip asks if... (full context)
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...stay, the Kendalls dine at the Ashley estate. Philip is annoyed by Rainaldi’s suggestion that Rachel come to him in London, where he will be conducting some business before returning to... (full context)
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The next day, Rainaldi prepares to leave. He once again asks Rachel to come to him in London, but she insists that she will make no plans... (full context)
Chapter 21
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March passes quickly, and Philip becomes increasingly excited about his birthday. He even reminds Rachel, “You have to remember what you said to me the other day. The celebrator of... (full context)
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...new document lacks adequate safeguards and might cause the Ashley fortune to be “dispersed” by Rachel. Philip remains steadfast, though he takes offense when Kendall asks, “You are completely infatuated with... (full context)
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...Philip receives a case of pipes from the servants as a birthday gift. Philip and Rachel dine, and then Philip goes out to walk the grounds and swim in the ocean.... (full context)
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Philip goes inside and fetches the basket full of jewels. He returns outside, under Rachel’s window, and throws up a rope to her, which he has knotted to the basket.... (full context)
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Rachel is overwhelmed by the jewels, and she and Philip embrace. “It was as though,” Philip... (full context)
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Rachel presses Philip for an answer, and he recalls the conversation they once had about how... (full context)
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...quite so straight a fashion.” Philip’s narrative voice cuts into the action, and explains that Rachel was his “first, and last” lover. (full context)
Chapter 22
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...falls asleep, and when he wakes, he goes outside and picks camellias to bring to Rachel. He finds her sitting up in her bed, eating breakfast, the opened document on her... (full context)
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...hang it in the hall together. Philip refrains from telling Seecombe of his engagement to Rachel because he thinks he and Rachel should share the news together. Philip then goes to... (full context)
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While walking, Philip spots the carriage; he bids it stop and climbs in beside Rachel, who reveals that she has been to Pelyn to consult with Nick Kendall. Rachel says... (full context)
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Rachel’s cool demeanor perplexes Philip. “Since yesterday,” he thinks, “everything was changed. Yet she gave no... (full context)
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Philip kisses Rachel passionately in the woods, telling her, “This […] was my plan, which you have spoilt... (full context)
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While walking home, Philip and Rachel pass the granite stone—Ambrose’s “tombstone.” Rachel insists on stopping to see it, and Philip is... (full context)
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Philip and Rachel dine. Rachel wears the pearl collar, but Philip finds this makes her “not closer to... (full context)
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...Philip’s birthday. Heavily inebriated by this point, Philip has resolved to announce his engagement to Rachel. He drunkenly breaks the news, and Rachel quickly explains to Nick Kendall and Louise that... (full context)
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...and listens as the Kendalls leave. His head a bit clearer, he stands and meets Rachel at the stairs. Rachel tells him: “You make me feel like a backstairs servant, creeping... (full context)
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Philip is stunned. He thinks the only way he can now influence Rachel is with fear, so he wraps his hands around her throat and begins to strangle... (full context)
Chapter 23
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...from the first,” she says, “and you were prepared for it, in the beginning, before [Rachel] came.” Philip replies that the only deception happened in “the last few hours,” and that... (full context)
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...takes Louise’s comments as “slander, almost blasphemy.” He responds that Louise has been prejudiced against Rachel from the moment she met her, and thinks that “no one could ever understand, save... (full context)
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...church; Louise’s carriage is waiting to take her home. Louise tells Philip what happened when Rachel visited Pelyn on Philip’s birthday to discuss the transfer of the estate with Nick Kendall.... (full context)
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Philip is offended. “[Rachel] would not refuse to marry me because of that one clause,” he says. “Is that... (full context)
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...the estate. Confused, Philip goes upstairs to his room, where he finds a note from Rachel. She writes: “I have asked Mary Pascoe to stay here with me in the house... (full context)
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Philip is enraged. Without changing out of his wet clothes, he storms to Rachel’s room, where he finds her with Mary. Philip insists on speaking to Rachel alone. Philip... (full context)
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Philip now regrets strangling Rachel. He begins to worry that he has taken a chill, and orders dinner in his... (full context)
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...off into a fevered dream, where he imagines himself on the banks of the Arno. “Rachel the beggar girl” approaches him “with empty hands,” naked except for the pearl collar around... (full context)
Chapter 24
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...outside is window is already in leaf. He also realizes he has grown a beard. Rachel is in the room with Philip, and when he asks where Mary Pascoe is Rachel... (full context)
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...convalesce. Though he cannot remember much of his illness, he is sure that he and Rachel were married the day before his birthday. Philip finds Rachel gentle and tender, and loves... (full context)
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...laburnum trees in the Villa Sangalletti, Tamlyn replies that he and the servants have heard Rachel will soon be returning there. “She was only waiting to see you restored to health... (full context)
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Rachel attempts to soothe Philip, encouraging him to continue making improvements to the estate after she... (full context)
Chapter 25
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Over the ensuing weeks as May turns to June, Philip and Rachel attempt to remain “light-hearted,” not speaking of Rachel’s impending departure. Philip suffers lingering head pain,... (full context)
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Philip looks for signs that Rachel will soon be leaving. He does not see any trunks, but he notices that Rachel... (full context)
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Philip is perplexed; why has Rachel been going to the town inn every day? He ventures to the quay and questions... (full context)
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At home, Philip finds Rachel in the library. He accuses her of having a secret, but before he can say... (full context)
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Philip orders Rachel to send Rainaldi away, but she stands her ground, saying that she will even ask... (full context)
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...Rainaldi, and particularly irritated Rainaldi’s use of the word “we” when referring to him and Rachel. Rachel soon arrives, and the three have dinner. Philip feels nauseated; even the tisana “ha[s]... (full context)
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After Rainaldi leaves, Rachel knocks on Philip’s door, where she finds him sitting by the window. She bids him... (full context)
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Philip tells Rachel she should spend time with Rainaldi if she prefers. Rachel replies that Rainaldi left England... (full context)
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...the granite stone in the woods and re-reading the buried letter. The next day, when Rachel is in her room resting, Philip sneaks out to the woods and digs up the... (full context)
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In the evening, Philip sits in Rachel’s bedroom as she brews his tisana. He cannot take his eyes off Rainaldi’s letter, which... (full context)
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In the early hours of the morning, Philip sneaks into Rachel’s room and looks for the letter. He cannot find it, though he searches all of... (full context)
Chapter 26
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...then goes downstairs to the kitchen, and finds the cups out of which he and Rachel drank their tisana. He tastes and examines the dregs of both cups; he thinks his... (full context)
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Morning dawns; it is Sunday, and Philip and Rachel take the carriage to church. Philip wishes that he could hate Rachel, “as [he] hated... (full context)
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As Rachel, the Kendalls, and the Pascoes are making plans for the evening, Philip notices one of... (full context)
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...Philip asks to speak privately with Louise later in the day. At the Ashley estate, Rachel is in high spirits. She pours wine for everyone except for Philip, who has resolved... (full context)
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After the meal, the Pascoes and Nick Kendall depart. Rachel invites Louise and Philip to her bedroom to drink tisana. Philip refuses to drink his... (full context)
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After a while, Rachel suggests a walk in the garden. Philip claims he has something to show Louise, so... (full context)
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Back upstairs, Philip tells Louise he thinks Rachel has been poisoning him. He says the proof lies in Rainaldi’s letter, which he needs... (full context)
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...is there. It is written in English, and says only that Rainaldi will wait for Rachel in Florence and that if Rachel “cannot bring [her]self to leave that boy behind,” then... (full context)
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...felici,” as “remember only the happy hours.” Louise wonders whether she and Philip have “misjudged” Rachel, as they cannot find proof she is trying to poison Philip. “There will never be... (full context)
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...need help.” Louise is perplexed, and Philip explains, “There may have been an accident, to Rachel.” Louise stares at Philip and finally says, “What have you done?” (full context)
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Philip runs outside to the terrace walk, but sees no sign of Rachel. He notices two of the family dogs standing near a pile of mortar, and sees... (full context)