Patrick Süskind

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Perfume: Part 3, Chapter 43 Summary & Analysis

In the middle of the night, Richis wakes his servants and tells them he plans to take Laure to Grenoble. They leave by eight in the morning, and the town of Grasse suspects that Laure will not return. Outside of Grasse, Richis instructs his servants to continue to Grenoble, and he turns the other direction with Laure and her handmaid. Richis plans to hide Laure at the monastery of Saint-Honorat, and then arrange her marriage to a baron's son on the condition that the two will be married within ten days and consummate their marriage on the day of the wedding. Richis knows the price for marrying Laure like this will be higher than if he waits a little longer, but he also knows that Laure being married and possibly pregnant will save her from the murderer.
Richis recognizes that it's Laure's youth and virginity that makes her a target for the murderer, at least based on his past murders. This raises the question, then, of whether simply not being a virgin would truly alter Laure's scent enough to save her—is there something about sexual virginity that makes one’s scent especially powerful, or especially attractive to Grenouille? Richis's plan indicates just how important Laure is to his life goals, as he's willing to make this more expensive investment in order to insure both her life and his ability to use her marriage for his own gains.
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The narrator says that while the plan was well thought out and Richis' logic is sound, Richis and Laure are traveling too slowly for Laure to be considered safe yet.
This statement creates a sense of foreboding. While it seems likely that Laure will not survive the novel, Richis' plan adds suspense.
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