Julia visits Mamé, along with William, Bertrand, Colette, Edouard, Laure, and Cécile. After the family is informed that Mamé’s condition has stabilized, Julia introduces William to her father-in-law. The Tézac women observe the meeting in confusion, but Julia senses that Bertrand understands what is happening. Edouard assures William that Julia will share Sarah’s story. As Edouard and the Tézacs leave, Julia imagines the shock that Colette, Laure, and Cécile will experience if and when Edouard explains everything to them.
The meeting of Edouard and William in this chapter is rendered poignantly, and shows the power of breaking silence. Though Edouard leaves the conversation looking suddenly “like an old man, shrunken and wan,” the novel continues to suggest that such emotional strain could have been avoided had the Tézac family not kept so many secrets.