Speak

Speak

Speak Part 2, Chapter 22 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Melinda has started to sit with Heather at the edge of the Martha table for lunch. The Marthas have gone shopping, and Heather has not been invited; Melinda feels nervous for her. The Marthas scold Heather for her poor contribution to the food drive (a bag of canned beets), her failure to collect enough cans, and her ugly posters (in fact created by Melinda). Heather cleans up after the Marthas, and does not defend Melinda’s posters.
Although Melinda’s decision to sit with the Marthas should mean that she is reconnecting with her high school community, it actually only makes her feel more isolated. She watches the Marthas bully Heather and mock her own posters, feeling completely alone and victimized as she does so.
Themes
Appearance versus Reality Theme Icon
Family and Friendship Theme Icon
The Marthas suddenly get excited as Andy Evans—whom Melinda identifies as IT—comes into the cafeteria. Emily reveals that he called her last night, while Siobhan scoffs that “‘he sleeps with anything,’” while Emily retorts that he’s “‘gorgeous’” and “‘rich,’” and only “‘the itsiest bit dangerous.’”
At last, Melinda names IT, and the Marthas reveal how popular and attractive he is. Clearly, however, something “dangerous” lies beneath his charming and charismatic appearance.
Themes
Communication versus Silence Theme Icon
Appearance versus Reality Theme Icon
Isolation, Loneliness, and Depression Theme Icon
Memory and Trauma Theme Icon
Andy Evans walks over and begins to flirt with Emily while standing behind Melinda. Melinda tries to lean into the table, deaf to his words and utterly paralyzed. She feels as if the lights have dimmed and the cafeteria has become cold. He reaches down and twirls her ponytail, and Melinda runs to the bathroom to throw up and splash icy water on her face. Heather does not follow her.
Melinda’s trauma reaches its peak as Andy Evans comes to her table, making it clear the terrible power that he has over her. To make matters worse, he seems to know how terrifying he is to her, and to relish this opportunity to violate her personal space.
Themes
Communication versus Silence Theme Icon
Appearance versus Reality Theme Icon
Family and Friendship Theme Icon
Isolation, Loneliness, and Depression Theme Icon
Memory and Trauma Theme Icon