This section contains 1,358 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Chapter Ten Summary
Rolf Carle returns to the country and Senor Aravena tells him of the unrest. Aravena wants Rolf to contact his friend, Huberto Naranjo and find out what the guerrillas are up to. Rolf is unsure if the man he knew is even alive, but he decides to try. Huberto, now known as Comandante Rogelio, is still living in the mountains, surrounded by his men and the new recruits that keep arriving. Living in the trees, directing his men and fighting for what he believes in is now Huberto's life.
Rolf stops at El Negro's bar and leaves a message, then returns each night until he is granted a meeting. Blindfolded and taken into the mountains, he spends five days being moved around like freight. Rolf respects the men for the way they treat each other and Rogelio for of the care he shows the people and his men. While considerate to others, Rogelio would do away with a traitor in his midst with no problem. Aravena tells Rolf to hide the film he has made, as the government will most certainly want it. Rolf takes the film in a locked suitcase to La Colonia and instructs his family to hide it.
Colonel Tolemeo Rodriquez arrives at the uniform factory where Eva works for an inspection. Rodriguez sees Eva and, that evening, has his driver ask her to meet him for dinner. Eva refuses to Mimi's consternation. Three weeks later she returns to her apartment to find Rodriquez with Mimi sharing coffee. Mimi is frantic, as the colonel is the man who made the quarterly inspections at the penal colony while she was a prisoner. With her friend pushing, Eva accepts a dinner invitation with the Rodriquez.
The two enjoy a nice meal and small talk until Eva shocks the colonel by asking him if he wishes to have sex with her. Flustered, Rodriquez admits that he does. Eva tells him that sex without love is nothing. The colonel is unsure of what kind of woman he is dealing with and grows angry when Eva suggests that they simply get the act over with so he can move on. Mimi is distraught, the colonel is a powerful man and can make trouble for them, so Eva resigns her position at the factory the following morning. Mimi is relieved, and tells Eva that now she can be a writer.
Eva does write, unable to stop the flow of words once they start. The words flow and after three weeks Mimi gets an appointment with the Director of National Television, Senor Aravena. Aravena shows no interest at first but Mimi flirts unmercifully, inviting the man to the apartment for a small dinner. Aravena agrees and the two leave the office with some hope for Eva's writing.
At the dinner party, Aravena arrives with Rolf Carle in tow. Eva senses that she knows the man from somewhere. Mimi asks Eva to tell a story and she does, enthralling those around her with her tale. Carle is taken with her and the two seem to have some type of connection, something intangible. They talk for hours.
Aravena calls a few days later and tells Eva that he will put her script on the air. Excited, Eva and Mimi celebrate while it rains for days. The news broadcasts tales of destruction and sadness, but with one happy ending. A woman had been found, peacefully asleep, floating in a casket. Eva rushes to the hospital and reunites with Elvira who moves into the apartment with her and Mimi. Once again Eva's life seems to have completed a circle.
Rolf returns from a trip to Prague and calls on Eva and the two spend a lovely evening together, sharing tales of their lives. Eva tells him of her life, leaving out Huberto so that she will not endanger him. Rolf tells Eva about his life and his childhood. Saddened for Rolf, Eva creates a new ending for his mother and sister, happy to be able to give her new friend a better memory.
Chapter Ten Analysis
Interesting things begin to happen in the lives of all the characters in the novel as their lives begin to intersect. Rolf Carle once again meets up with Huberto, now known as Comandante Rogelio. The easygoing nature of Huberto has been replaced with a man who is extremely cautious. Rolf is blindfolded and transported over a period of five days until he is deep in the jungle and in another world.
The life that Rogelio lives is far different from the life in the capital of the country. A war rages around him, one that the government is trying to keep from the general public's awareness. Though Rolf is a bit frightened at times, he lives the life of a guerrilla, deep in the jungles of South America. Rolf documents the lives of the guerrillas, and sees first hand the deep affection that Rogelio has for his men. The difficulties of the life sometimes cause a man to crack and Rogelio calms them, caring for them like a family member. A strong leader, Rogelio would have no trouble killing the same man if he was found a traitor. The life of the guerrilla is filled with peril and Rogelio explains to Rolf that the men all expect to die, so living is what they do until then.
Eva meets Colonel Rodriquez while she is working in the uniform factory in the capital. In her office, Eva is intrigued, even though the two never exchange words. The invitation by the colonel to dinner is a surprise to Eva who turns it down to Mimi's dismay. Eva is uncomfortable with the colonel's interest, and worried that meeting him would put Huberto in danger. Despite her refusal, Eva is still curious about the colonel and almost disappointed when he does not approach her again. When Rodriquez arrives at her apartment to ask her to dinner again, Eva accepts, as much from curiosity as to save Mimi. Mimi has discovered that Rodriquez is the same man that had conducted quarterly inspections at Santa Maria. Though there is little likelihood that the colonel would connect the ravishing beauty with the pitiful creature from the prison, Eva takes the man away and gives her friend peace.
At dinner, Eva displays her bluntness, asking the colonel if he is after her for sex. Astonished, the colonel quickly grows angry at Eva's seeming lack of decorum. Rodriquez considers Eva a challenge and tells her that he will win her over. In order to avoid further confrontation, Eva quits her job so that she will not see Rodriquez again.
This is the start of yet another chapter in Eva's life, as she begins to write in earnest. Though she has always written her thoughts in notebooks, Eva begins to tell a tale, weaving the facts of her life into characters on a page. For three weeks this continues until Mimi arranges a meeting with Senor Aravena. Mimi invites the man to a meal at their home and it is here that Eva meets Rolf Carle. The evening is the beginning of something important for all parties, for more reasons than one. Aravena is entranced by Mimi. Eva is not sure if this man can provide Mimi with what she needs and allow her to flourish and become the wonderful person that she is, but does not interfere. Eva in turn is drawn to Rolf, and he to her. The tales that Eva weaves draw the journalist in and he cannot get Eva from his mind.
The rains that bring tragedy to so many in the surrounding countryside bring Eva's beloved abuela Elvira back to her. The coffin that Elvira has had for so long provides her with safe passage through the floods. Having purchased the coffin for her passage to death, Elvira is now sure that she will not need it, as it has provided her with passage to life. Mimi is at once taken with the kindly grandmother and Elvira moves in with the two woman, creating a larger, stronger family.
This section contains 1,358 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)