House - Chapters 9 - 11 Summary & Analysis

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Chapters 9 - 11 Summary

In Chapter 9, Betty throws Leslie out of the meat locker. Then Leslie is chased by Pete. Randy and Jack manage to stun Betty and Stewart badly enough to give them an opportunity to lock the two in the meat locker. Randy takes a knife from the kitchen and the two go in search of the girls. They notice the basement door is open. Stephanie, meanwhile, runs into Randy as she tries to find her way in the dark. They decide Pete has taken Leslie into the basement when they find one of her earrings on the steps. Jack orders Stephanie to hide in the coat closet while he and Randy go after Leslie.

In Chapter 10, Barsidious White is waiting at the top of the steps that lead to the outside door to the basement. He realizes the game inside the house is going well. He hopes it will not be finished before he has a chance to introduce the real stakes of the game and show the real extent of his power. He listens to the sounds inside the house and realizes the players will soon be in the basement.

As Jack walks down the stairs into the basement, he is met by the odor of rotten eggs. Randy will not come downstairs until Jack suggests there may be more guns in the basement. Jack opens the first door of the three they find in the basement. They find a room set up like a living room but with a red pentagram on the wall. The saying: "The wages of sin is death" is written below the pentagram. In the next room there is also a pentagram and a mirror, which fascinates Randy because it does not show his reflection. Each room they enter branches into more rooms. As the men search through the basement for Leslie, they hear the singing again. At the conclusion of the chapter, Jack is sucked through a door into a dark room, separating him from Randy.

In Chapter 11, Randy feels himself coming completely unglued after he is separated from Jack. He hears Betty and Stewart talking about how they have locked the basement door so Jack and his group are trapped. Betty reminds Stewart that they have to open the door for "him" in order to keep up their part of the deal. Randy hears them leave the room and finds the only door that is unlocked is the one that Stewart and Betty went out. Although he doesn't want to, Randy opens the door. He is able to see a door, set at the top of three steps, that he believes leads to the outside. As he gets closer, Randy realizes the door is unlocked.

As Randy moves toward the door, he sees White walk in through it. Randy is hidden from White's line of sight and is able to jump into a passageway to keep from being seen. Randy has a brief moment when he thinks it might be better for him to join forces with White, but then White walks away and Randy hears a door close. Randy searches the nearby rooms and finds a shotgun. He hears footsteps and Betty's voice calling Stewart. He walks through another door and finds himself in a tunnel. Randy hears something that sounds like a hatch open, then footsteps running toward him.

Chapters 9 - 11 Analysis

The tone of the book becomes more and more ominous as it becomes clear to Jack's group that Betty and her weird family has turned completely against them and intends to kill them. It is also during these chapters that the action of the novel moves to the forbidden basement. It is indicated by the book that it is in the basement that the real game that White is playing with the group will begin. The basement is smelly, wet and made up of a maze of rooms, hallways and tunnels that branch off one another in a pattern that seems to make no sense to Jack and his group. Randy reasons as he tries to find his way through the basement that the house does not sit on a square foundation as the basement seems much larger than the house above it.

It is also in this section of the novel that White enters the house. Randy has overheard Betty and Stewart talking about the deal that they made to unlock the door for White. When Randy sees the unlocked door, he hopes he can make it out, but is interrupted by White's entrance. For a brief moment, Randy considers joining forces with White.

It is also in these chapters that the characters, particularly Jack's bunch, become separated. The authors take advantage of these times of separation to focus in on each characters thoughts and feelings as they are trapped in the house. Stephanie, for instance, is the first to escape from the meat locker and is scared because she is lost and alone. When she is reunited with Jack and Randy, Jack orders her into the closet while they go to look for Leslie. While Stephanie interprets his actions as not caring enough about her to come look for her while he is willing to look for Leslie, Jack is actually trying to protect Stephanie by putting her in a place where he knows where she is and that she is safe. All Stephanie can think about, though, is that Jack's abandonment of her is another sign that he does not love her. Stephanie seems to have an issue with abandonment as she believes she is the one who is being abandoned. Notice, however, that of all of the people in the novel, Stephanie has been the one who has run away from her troubles, twice. The first time she ran away was when Betty was tormenting her with the ice cube. The appearance of the Tin Man was the only thing that kept her in the house. Stephanie also ran out of the meat cooler at her first opportunity, without staying to help fight for the others' freedom as Leslie did. Once Stephanie has run away from her problem, however, she is hurt and scared when she finds herself alone.

Leslie, meanwhile, is believed to have been apprehended by Pete. Jack continues his role as leader. Randy, however, is beginning to appear to be the weak link in the chain. His fear is beginning to cause him to think irrationally. He is concerned only with saving his own self instead of the others. In fact, he admits that he would probably be willing to sacrifice Leslie, the woman to whom he is practically married, if it meant being able to save himself. Randy thinks about his own cowardliness. He remembers his father telling him not to be a wimp when he beat the boy with a belt. This insight into Randy's background gives the reader an idea why Stewart's actions with his belt before supper disturbed Randy so badly.

One question that is raised in Chapter 11 is a strange "she" who is mentioned in that chapter. It may seem at first this "she" is either Leslie or Stephanie, but it could also be another playing in the game who has not yet been introduced.

This section contains 1,215 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
House from BookRags. (c)2016 BookRags, Inc. All rights reserved.
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