Chapter 7 - 9 Summary
It's five weeks later and Catherine finally returns to Wuthering Heights, just in time for Christmas. Her appearance is dramatically altered and she appears quite the lady! Heathcliff has also changed, but not for the better. While working hard for Hindley, he has become dirty and neglected. He cleans up nicely for Christmas, but a slight altercation that leaves Edgar Linton with applesauce all over his face gets Heathcliff banished to his room. Cathy sneaks away to visit Heathcliff. Heathcliff vows revenge on Hindley.
Now it's 1778...
Hindley's wife dies of consumption after giving birth to a son, Hareton. Things get even worse at Wuthering Heights - Hindley has become a ruthless tyrant, Cathy becomes more arrogant (she even slaps Mrs. Dean), and Heathcliff seems to be turning into a monster.
Edgar Linton asks Cathy to marry him. She accepts, but confides her doubt to Mrs. Dean. Heathcliff overhears only part of this conversation and takes off to the moors. Cathy goes searching for him, but ends up with a cold and fever instead. She is again off to recover at Thrushcross Grange, but passes her illness on to Mr. and Mrs. Linton. They both die in short order.
Cathy and Edgar marry. Mrs. Dean joins them at Thrushcross Grange. Heathcliff is still MIA.
Cathy to Mrs. Dean (Heathcliff overhears the first phrase before disappearing):
It would degrade me to marry Heathcliff now; so he shall never know how I love him: and that, not because he's handsome, Nelly, but because he's more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same; and Linton's is as different as a moonbeam from lightening, or frost from fire....My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods: time will change it, I'm well aware, as winter changes the trees. My love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath: a source of little visible delight, but necessary. Nelly, I AM Heathcliff! He's always in my mind: not as a pleasure to myself, but as my own being. So don't talk of our separation again: it is impracticable... (page 81 - 83)
Wow, wow, wow! This is powerful stuff: Cathy loves Heathcliff - Cathy is Heathcliff. But where is Heathcliff?
Before beginning this book, I had no idea Cathy was such a piece of work. What does Heathcliff see in her? Although it has taken a bit of self-control, I'm sticking to the schedule... more than ready to continue with chapter 10.
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