By Stoker Bram
By Stoker Bram
From Blade to Twilight to True Blood, the vampire myth has become a central part of modern popular culture. But all too often, we—especially younger fans—may not be aware of the vampire’s roots.
Bram Stoker did not make vampires up. In fact, there’s evidence that these blood-suckers have been around in our superstitions and ghost stories for thousands of years. But Stoker did give us Dracula, a central character to the modern vampire mythos. Stoker also set the standard for the powers vampires usually have today.
Let’s take a closer look at this horror novel. But first, we’ll talk a little about Bram Stoker’s life and other works. Then, before we see a general overview of Dracula’s plot, let’s see some of the historical influences that helped shape Dracula.
Bram Stoker was born November 8, 1847. This Irish writer was not known for his novels while he was alive. He was most known as the personal assistant of the actor Henry Irving and business managers of the Lyceum Theatre.
As a young child, Stoker was gravely ill for many years. When it was time for him to start school, he almost miraculously recovered. Later, he would comment that the time he spent indoors because of his illness helped fuel his imagination. And he’d need every ounce of imagination to write Dracula.
All in all, Stoker wrote over a dozen novels, many of which weren’t even horror-like. Some were even romance dramas. He showed skill in writing in many different genre’s although none of his books every became near as famous as Dracula.
Stoker spent his summers in Whitby, a small town on the coast. This is the same town that appears in the novel.
Bram Stoker spent seven years researching Eastern European superstitions and vampires before writing Dracula. Many of the stories and ideas (like the powers that Dracula had) came from previous myths.
At the time that Dracula was being written, books about great forces threatening the British Empire were very much in style. Other writers, like Arthur Conan Doyle and HG Wells were also writing invasion stories.
There were also several semi-famous vampire stories out there, with titles like Carmilla, Varney the Vampire, and The Vampyre.
Dracula was originally going to be titled The Un-Dead. In fact, in the original notes, Dracula’s name was really Count Wampyr. But as Stoker continued his research of all things Romanian, he fell in love with the name Dracula (which literally means “the dragon/devil”).
Stoke always planned to make a stage version of the novel, and he wanted Irving to play the role of Dracula. These plans never came to fruition and Dracula wasn’t acted out until it’s film adaptation, Nosferatu, in 1922.
Dracula is written as a collection of letters, notes, telegrams, and journal/diary entries. This kind of story-telling isn’t very common today and may be a little confusing to the modern reader, especially when the notes aren’t in strictly chronological order. Their order is meant to make the story flow the best, and usually the order works well.
Dracula starts through the eyes of Jonathan Harker. He travels to Transylvania on a business trip. He is to meet Count Dracula in his castle in the Carpathian mountains. The Count wants to buy a property in England and move there.
Harker’s trip to Castle Dracula is very strange. The locals think he’s crazy for wanting to go there. One woman even gives him a cross as protection. Harker is picked up by a dark carriage. The woods are overrun with wolves, but the driver of the carriage seems to be able to drive the wolves away with a wave of his hand.
Harker gets to the Castle and is welcomed at the door by the Count himself. Dracula says that all the servants are asleep (because it’s nighttime), so he serves Harker a dinner himself, but the Count doesn’t eat anything himself.
The two men stay up until dawn talking and then sleep most of the day. This happens several times. Harker never sees the Count during the day, and he slowly comes to realize that there aren’t any servants in the house at all.
Dracula convinces Harker to stay in his castle for an extra month, supposedly to teach him about English culture and language. Jonathan is obligated to accent the invitation, although he starts to get the idea that he’s really a prisoner in the castle.
On day, Harker explores the rest of the castle. He meets three ghostly women, Dracula’s brides. They try to kill him, but the Count manages to save his life at the last minute. Dracula tells the wives that Harker belongs to him and they can’t have him… not until the month is over. Then the Count feeds his brides a small child. Harker is freaked out by now.
Gypsies load up boxes of dirt into wagons to ship to England. Dracula leaves with them. Harker, left alone with the bride, knows he hast to escape, so he climbs out of his window and braves the woods to get away.
Meanwhile, Mina, Harker’s fiancé, is visiting Lucy in the seaside town of Whitby. Lucy has been sleepwalking a lot lately and Mina is very worried about her.
Dr Seward, one of the many men that are in love with Lucy, works in an insane asylum. One patient, Renfield, has the nasty habit of eating living things, like flies, spiders, and sparrows. He also screams on and on sometimes about “his master” coming soon.
Mina and Lucy are up on a churchyard overlooking the town when they see a ship run aground, a great storm following right behind it from the ocean. The entire crew is found dead. A large dog jumps off the ship and runs away, and no one is able to find it later.
Lucy keeps sleepwalking, more and more. Now she’s pale and weak. Once, Mina catches Lucy hanging out he window, a larger bird bent over her neck.
Mina is worried, and she gets Seward to help. Seward gets more help from an Texan named Quincey and Arthur—Lucy’s fiancé. He also calls a doctor named Van Helsing, who supposedly knows a lot about mysterious diseases.
Mina is called away to Transylvania because Harker has been found and is in a hospital there. She goes to take care of him, and they are married while he is still sick.
Meanwhile, Lucy is getting worse. Van Helsing uses garlic flowers to “protect” Lucy, though no one understands why that would help.
Eventually, Lucy dies. Right away, rumors spread about this beautiful lady taking children and drinking their blood. Van Helsing convinces Seward that Lucy is that same lady, now a vampire. They even go to her tomb and find if empty during the night but occupied during the day.
They bring Arthur and Quincey in on the secret, and they are forced to kill Lucy (again), cutting off her head and staking her heart.
Mina and Harker return home, where he inherits a large business from his employer, who has died. The newlyweds find themselves rich! Mina gets into contact with Van Helsing and they compare notes. Van Helsing is convinced they must find and kill Dracula.
They discover that the boxes of dirt were taken to a house called Carfax, outside London and nextdoor to Seward’s asylum. Dracula apparently needs the dirt from home to sleep on.
They begin to hunt Dracula. Meanwhile, he begins to turn Mina, attacking her when others aren’t looking. Eventually they find the boxes of dirt in both Carfax and another house in London, ruining them for the Count by pouring holy water in them. But one box is still missing. That means Dracula can still be hiding.
They start to use hypnoses on Mina to find Dracula. Because he has a connection to her, she will never be safe. When she dies, even if many years later, she will turn to a vampire if Dracula isn’t killed. When under hypnoses, Mina can feel where Dracula is. They discover that he’s on another ship.
He must be going back home, since her only has one box of dirt left.
They track down what ship is going to the region of Transylvania. Traveling by train, they are able to beat the ship there.
They think they know where the ship will land, so they hang out on the docks for days, waiting. But the ship ends up landing in another port. By the time they get to the other town, the box of dirt has been handed over to some Slovaks, who are now taking the box up river.
The group uses a steamboat to chase the Slovaks down. Others of the group take horses along the river’s bank. Van Helsing and Mina take a carriage directly to Castle Dracula.
Mina starts to get very sick as they get closer. Van Helsing ends up having to leave her outside the castle, a ring of communion wafers protecting her from Dracula’s brides. During the day, Van Helsing goes into the castle and kills the sleeping brides.
Meanwhile, the Slovaks have already passed the box over to some gypsies, who are taking Dracula up to the castle by wagon.
The entire group converges on the wagon. The gypsies surround the wagon to protect it with their knives. But the men have guns and they manage to break through. Quincey is killed by a knife, though.
They break open the box and find the sleeping Dracula. They cut off his head and stake his heart. He turns into dust and Mina’s curse is lifted.
The Count that invited Harker to his castle. His plan is to move to London. What Harker (and the others) learn later is that Dracula is also a vampire. Because of that, he has a vast array of powers, including the ability to morph into different animals, control animals (like wolves), control the weather, and turn into mist. He’s also super strong. He drinks blood, which gives him youth and strength. He also seems to have a telepathic connection with his victims. Unlike modern vampires, Dracula has no problem going into the daylight. He just isn’t very powerful during the day. He also needs to sleep during the day, and he can only sleep on dirt from his home in Transylvania. His weaknesses: various Christian symbols like the cross, holy water, and communion wafers, as well as garlic flowers.
Jonathan is sent to Transylvania to meet Count Dracula in order to finalize some business transactions. The Count obligated him to stay an extra month to help him practice his English. The extended stay almost kills Harker. When Dracula leaves the castle, Harker must leave to escape the three vampire women that live there, too. He is later found with a high fever. Mina meets him in a mission hospital, where they marry. Later, Harker inherits the firm he works for, making him very wealthy. He helps kill Dracula in the end.
Mina spend a lot of time worried in this book. First, she is worried about Lucy’s sleepwalking. Then she is worried about Jonathan, who stays way too long in Transylvania. Finally, she learns he’s in a hospital there. She rushes out to take care of him and marry him. When they return, they get very buy with running Harker’s new business, so busy that she doesn’t know about Lucy’s death until after the fact. Later, Mina contacts and compares notes with Van Helsing, giving the humans the advantage to kill Dracula. She also helps a lot when she is made a victim by the Count. Because of their connection, they use hypnotism on Mina to know where Dracula is.
Lucy starts the novel having to choose between three young suitors: Arthur, Jack, and Quincey. She ends up choosing Arhtur, although she never gets to marry any of them. She starts sleepwalking when Mina is visiting her. Later, she is attacked by Dracula, who slowly turns her to a vampire. She dies and they have a funeral for her. Later, she comes back as a vampire, sucking the blood of small children at night. The men find her during the day in her tomb and kill her.
Arthur is but one of the three men that love Lucy. They are engaged, but they never marry. Arthur is very wealthy, and he gains the title of Lord when his father dies.
Seward also loves Lucy. He calls Van Helsing when he can’t understand what is happening to Lucy. He also has a patient named Renfield, someone who seems to worship Dracula. His asylum is next door to the estate that Dracula buys through Harker’s firm.
Van Helsing is a mysterious man and was once Seward’s teacher. He’s called in to look as Lucy’s case because he’s an expert in mysterious diseases. He knows that a vampire is responsible, although he doesn’t reveal what he know until Lucy is dead. He knows a lot about vampire, including how they can’t get near garlic flowers or crosses. He also knows the best way to kill an un-dead is by staking them through the heart and cutting off their head.
Quincey is a Texan that is in love with Lucy. He helps with Lucy while she is alive and he also helps track down and kill Dracula. When the group fights the gypsies to get to Dracula’s box, Quincey is mortally wounded. He lives long enough to see the Count die and Mina return to normal. When Harker and Mina have a child, they name him after Quincey.
Renfield is a patient in Seward’s asylum. He likes to capture and eat living creatures and he seems to worship Dracula. He escapes more than once from his cell and he attack others by biting them.
These three ladies live in Castle Dracula. They were supposed to kill Harker (before he escaped). Van Helsing enters the castle by day and kills them while they sleep, though.
In many ways, Dracula is a story of the classic struggle of Good versus Evil. Dracula is absolute evil. His name means “the dragon” or “the devil” in Romanian. Later, he even uses the name Count del Ville (sounding like Devil). The human characters, like Harker and Mina and Arthur, are portrayed as extremely good and pure.
There is a major connection between blood and life in the Vampire mythos. Renfield is also consumed with the idea of gaining immortality by consuming the life of other creatures. Dracula begins the novel looking very old, but when Harker sees him in the streets of London later, he is much younger. Drinking blood seems to give him youth and vigor.
It interesting that the bad guy of this story is a foreigner. Dracula seems to be very much a story about “West versus East.” Dracula’s strange accent and customs made him much scarier to the English readers of the novel.
There is something strangely sexual about the vampires of the novel. In fact, the argument about Dracula taking blood from you woman having sexual insinuations seems sound. Marriage also seems a prominent theme in the novel. Mina travels across Europe to take care of Harker—and she doesn’t hesitate to marry him, likely so that the nuns of the mission hospital would leave them alone together. Lucy has three young men fighting over her hand in marriage. Even Dracula is married—his three brides staying behind in his castle while he goes to England.
Stoker includes a lot of technologies that were vey cutting edge in those days, like Seward’s phonograph and blood transfusions. We also see a case of technology versus ancient things throughout the novel. For example, Jonathan Harker tricks Dracula by using short hand in his letters, which Dracual can’t read. Dracula takes forever to get back to East Europe by ship, but the others arrive days earlier because they traveled by train. The men are almost able to catch up to the Slovaks’ boat (carrying Dracula’s last box of dirt) with their fancy steamboat. When the men confront the gypsies, they are able to win because they have rifles and the gypsies only have knives. Dracula send a few letters in the story, but the others can keep in even better contact by using letters and telegrams.
Jonathan Harker is preparing for a journey, and he keep records in shorthand in his journal. He’s travelling through Budah-Pesth, or Budapest, now the capital of Hungary. His destination is the nation of Transylvania (which today is called Romania). Harker’s done his homework about Transylvania, research he did before leaving home in England.
Specifically, he’s going to Castle Dracula, which he couldn’t find on any maps. He blames the quality of the maps of the area, but he already has an idea where the castle is—in the eastern part of the country, in the Carpathian Mountains.
Harker even lists the ethnic groups of the country, which shows just how much research he did.
While in Budapest, he doesn’t sleep well. He hears a dog howling and has weird dreams.
Later, Harker takes a train from Budapest to Bistriz, a town very close to Castle Dracula. Once in Bistriz, he gets to a hotel that Count Dracula told him to stay at. A reservation’s already been made for him and Dracula has also left him a letter. The letter has instructions for how to get to the castle.
Harker asks the owner of the hotel about Count Dracula, but he and his wife are completely silent about the man. As he’s leaving, the innkeeper’s wife insists he take along a crucifix to ward away evil. Harker is an Anglican, so he doesn’t really use the crucifix like that, but the woman is absolutely insistent.
The innkeeper’s wife says that it’s the eve of St George’s Day, and at midnight all evil things will have power. That makes Harker a little nervous. He leaves Bistriz on a coach, per Dracula’s instructions.
Harker is now in Castle Dracula, and he’s writing about his trip up to the castle. As he was riding in the coach, the other passengers were obviously talking about him, although in a language he couldn’t understand. But he had a pocket dictionary and he managed to look up some of the words he heard over and over. He found out they were using words like “devil,” “hell,” and “vampire.” Harker sees them as simple superstitions and makes a note to ask Dracula about them.
On their way through the town, the villagers gather around the coach and cross themselves. They then head out to the countryside and into the mountains.
As the sun sets and it gets deeper into the night, the passengers urge the driver to get a move on it. When the coach gets to a place called Borgo Pass, where the private coach is supposed to pick Harker up and take him to the castle.
The private coach arrives just in time, and Harker notes that the driver’s eyes look red in the lamplight. By the time Harker is all moved over and riding in the private coach, it’s almost midnight, which is the hour the innkeeper’s wife had warned about.
Wolves howl in the distance and spook the horses. The driver calms them and the coach continues. Then it starts to snow and Harker huddles under a blanket for warmth in the open coach.
Along the side of the road, Harker sees a blue flame or light. When the driver sees it, he stops the coach and walks out to it, piling rocks there to mark the spot.
Harker listens to the wolves howling and imagines he can see the lights through the body of the driver. He shakes the idea away, thinking it impossible. They continue down the road, the driver stopping every once in a while to mark stones under the blue lights.
Once, the wolves surround the coach, but the driver scares them away somehow.
Then they reach the castle.
Harker thinks he fell asleep before they got to the castle, but he does remember the driver helping down when their already at the door. The man is incredibly strong. The driver takes the coach away and Harker is left alone at the front door.
He waits for a long time, not sure what to do. Finally, the door opens, a tall, old man inside welcoming him inside, a man dressed in black with a long white mustache. This man introduces himself as Count Dracula. He speaks English with a funny accent.
Dracula invites Harker to cross the threshold and step into the house. Dracula takes Harker to his room himself, since, he says, all his servants are in bed already. Harker is lead to a great room with a fire place and an adjoining bedroom for him to sleep in. Harker changes his clothes and comes out to eat something. Dracula says he’s already eaten.
After Harker gets a meal in him, Dracula invites him to sit by the fire and tell about his journey.
Harker takes a moment to describe Dracula in better detail, from his pale skin to his pointy ears, thick eyebrows, and the hair growing from the palm of his hands (yuck). Harker comments here that he felt repulsed by the count, even though at this point he doesn’t know Dracula is really a vampire.
Dracula leaves Harker to sleep. It’s at this point that Harker actually starts writing everything we’ve been reading in his journal.
It’s early morning, May 7, and Harker is writing about the previous day, May 6.
He sleeps until late in the day, since he was travelling almost all night. When he wakes up, he finds a note from Dracula saying not to wait around for him. There is breakfast, which has been left out for Harker. He wonders where the servants of the house are. There isn’t any bell at the table to ring for servants to take away the dirty dishes.
Something else is strange about the room: there aren’t any mirrors.
Harker enjoys his meal and finds that there is a library adjoining the room, filled with English books and newspapers. He settles down to read, and, before long, Dracula finds him and talks about the newspapers from London.
Dracula is eager to go to London, but he wants to improve his English first, and he asks Harker to help with his English, to which Harker agrees.
Dracula tells Harker that he can go anywhere in the castle, except into rooms that are locked. The Count then talks about some of the superstitions of the region, including the belief surrounding the blue flames in the forest at night.
According to tradition, the blue lights mark where gold is buried. Most people know this but are too scared to go and dig it up. Then the Count changes the subject, interested in the house Harker’s Company is helping him buy in London.
The estate is called Carfax, close to London, an old house and a chapel. Harker comments that there is a “lunatic asylum” next door, but the building isn’t visible from the house.
Dracula leaves the room for a few minutes and returns to say that supper is ready. Harker eats, but the Count once again says that he’s already eaten. After supper, they stay up most of the night talking.
When the first rooster crows, menaing dawn is coming, Dracula excuses himself, apologizing for keeping Harker up so long. Harker goes to his room and writes all this into his journal before going to sleep.
Harker gets a few hours of sleep, but soon enough he’s up and trying to shave. He has a little travel mirror, which he uses while shaving. Suddenly, Count Dracula’s voice behind startles him. Dracula is right behind him, even though Harker doesn’t see him in the mirror!
Startled, Harker cuts himself. When he turns, Dracula’s eyes blaze at the blood and the Count lunges at Harker’s neck. He stops himself just in time, blames his temporary lapse of sanity on the mirror and throws it out the window.
Harker tries to finish shaving best he can without a mirror. He goes out into the main room and sees that breakfast is ready. Dracula is gone. Harker realizes that he’s never seen Dracula eat or drink. Harker eats and decides to go exploring. But most of the doors in the castle are locked.
Harker suddenly starts to feel like a prisoner!
Harker returns to his room and finds Dracula himself making the bed. That must mean there are no servants in the castle, a fact that disturbs Harker. He suddenly finds comfort in the crucifix the innkeeper’s wife gave him.
That night, Harker and the Count talk at length about the history of Transylvania. Dracula talks about the old days of the country, about how invader would come in waves from the Black Sea or other regions.
Strangely, Dracula uses the word “we” when talking about what his ancestors did.
By the time the conversation is over, it’s almost dawn again. Dracula leaves and Harker records the day’s happening in his journal before going to sleep.
Harker records some questions the Count asked him the previous night:
Dracula asks is someone in London can hire more than one lawyer. Harker says he doesn’t see why not. Dracula asks more about hiring business proxies in England. Then the Count asks Harker to stay in the castle for another month.
Harker doesn’t want to, but what can he do? He agrees to stay.
The Count suggests that Harker write letters to Mina, his fiancée, as well as to Peter Hawkins, his business partner. Because Harker suspects that Dracula will read the letters, he keeps his note to Mr Hawkins purely professional. He writes to Mina in shorthand, which he knows Dracula couldn’t read.
Dracula drafts some letter himself, and Harker notices they are to lawyers and bankers in England and Bulgaria and Budapest. Dracula then leaves early. He can’t stay all night to talk because he has other business to attend to.
He warns Harker about wandering around the castle too much or falling asleep anywhere other than his bedroom.
Harker writes everything down in his journal and then hangs the crucifix above his bed to keep bad dreams away. This castle is starting to get to him. He sits to look out the window for a while.
The moonlight is strong enough for him to see the woods and mountains outside. He notices that there’s someone out there. He sees the Count crawl out his window and scale the wall down, his head facing downward like some kind of animal.
Harker has seen Dracula sneek out his window again, and he’s freaking out about it. Since he believes he’s alone in the castles now, he decides to do some exploring. He takes a lamp with him.
He finds a door that’s unlocked, leading to a dusty old room. The goes in. The window of this room looks out over the ravine below. He sits down at the desk in the room and writes in his journal (in shorthand) all that’s happening.
Jonathan Harker thinks he’s going crazy, and writing in this journal is the only thing that keeps him sane. He starts describing all the strange things that have been happening to him.
Remember he wrote in his journal in that dusty room? After that, he decides to take a nap in that same room, even though the Count warned him about sleeping outside his room.
He’s suddenly aware of other people in the room. Three women are there, thin and pale with very red lips. Harker is both attracted to them and repulsed by them. He’s just peeking out from under his eyelashes, so the women don’t know he’s awake.
One of the women goes for Harker’s throat, but Dracula jumps in the room and yells at the women, telling them that Harker is his property. When the women complain, Dracula says that they can have him when the Count’s done with him.
Dracula then opens a bag that he’s had slung over his sholder. He pulls a young child from the bag and fees it to the women. Harker then faints.
Harker wakes up in his own bed and immediately starts writing in his journal.
The Count has asked Harker to write some more letters to home—three—one saying he’s fine and almost done with business, another saying he’s about to leave, and the last saying he’s already in Bistriz.
Dracula explains that the mail system in Transylvania isn’t very good, so this way no one at home will worry.
The letters are to be dated June 12, June 19, and June 29. Harker interprets from this that Dracula plans to feed him to his vampire ladies on the 29th.
Harker tries to send some real letters to home behind the Count’s back. He sees some Szgany (which are like gypsies) outside the window. He throws two letters out the window at them, along with a gold coin, trying to use sign language to tell them to send the letters for him. One letter is written in normal writing to Peter Hawkins, telling him to contact Mina. The second letter is to Mina, telling her he’s being held prisoner in Castle Dracula. But the second letter is in shorthand.
Later, Dracula comes to the room with the two letters, which the gypsies gave to him. He offers to the send the letter to Hawkins, but he pretends he doesn’t know who wrote the second one, since he can’t read it, and tears it up.
Harker wants to write the letters again and keep them in his pocket, so he can send them if or when he get the opportunity. But now he can’t find any paper or envelopes.
As he searches around, all his clothes are gone, too.
Harker sees a group of peasants pull up to the castle in wagons. He tries to signal them, but they just drop off some big wooden boxes, ignoring Harker completely, and drive off.
Harker sees Dracula leave the castle through the window again. This time the Count is wearing Harker’s clothers!
He figures the Count wants witnesses to see “him” leaving the castle on time and in one piece.
Harker waits for the Count to come back, and the starts to doze off while waiting, and in his stupor, he sees some specks of dust dancing in the moonlight. He comes too just in time to see they’re actually the three vampire women.
It’s the morning of the 25th, and Harker has decided it’s time to do something about his situation.
He figures the Count must sleep during the day, since he only ever comes out at night. So now, during daylight hours, he chooses to go to the Count’s room. He makes it, only to see that the room is empty and dusty. There is, however, a staircase leading down. Harker follows it.
He comes to an old chapel, full of old coffins and boxes filled with dirt. Dracula is in one of the boxes. When Harker sees him, he notices that the Count’s eyes are open and glassy. Harker doesn’t know if the monster is asleep of awake, so he runs out and climbs back through the window and gets to his own room’s window.
He gets inside and writes all that he’s seen.
It’s the day of the last letter Dracula sent for Harker, so Harker is sure he’s going to die today. Dracula meets him early in the morning and tells him that they’ll have to say goodbye the next day.
Harker says why doesn’t he leave today instead. Dracula tells him he can do if he wishes. When Harker opens the door, though, wolves are gathered around, waiting to eat him.
Harker says he’ll just wait until tomorrow. He goes back to his room and writes all this in his journal.
It’s morning time again, so Harker decides he must get the keys to the front door. He risks leaving his room through the window and climbing to Dracula’s room again.
Down the stairs, he finds Dracula in the box again. He looks younger now, hair brown and not whit, a little color to his cheeks. There’s also blood on his lips and chin.
Harker can’t allow this monster to get to London and continue feeding there.
He picks up a shovel and tries to hit Dracula in the head. Even though the Count is asleep, he seems to move just slightly out of the way so that the shovel only leaves a slight gash. Then the coffin lid closes on its own.
When he gets back to his own room, he sees that boxes and coffins are being loaded into wagons below. Dracula must be in one of those coffins! That means Harker is alone in the castles with the three vampire ladies.
Harker decides he must try to escape. He writes a note to Mina in his journal and climbs out the window.
Here, we switch gears a little. This chapter starts with letters between Mina (Harker’s fiancée) and Lucy Westenra. We’re also jumping back in time a little, back to May 9.
Mina writes Lucy first:
She apologizes for not writing sooner, but she’s been very busy with her job as an assistant schoolteacher, but they’ll be together soon during vacation.
Mina’s been practicing shorthand so she can help Harker after they’re married. She’s keeping a journal in shorthand to practice. She also practices using a typewriter.
Min reports that she’s heard from Jonathan, a letter saying that he’ll be back in about a week. She tells Lucy to write back soon with news of a certain good-looking someone.
Lucy writes back and talks about all the parties she’s been to. Lucy must be of a higher class than Mina, spending more time at social engagements than working.
The good-looking someone is Mr Arthur Holmwood, a rich, handsome man. Apparently, Halmwood also introduced Lucy to Dr Seward, another handsome man.
Aparently Lucy is in love with Holmood. She says she can’t wait to see Mina in person so they can chat.
Lucy sends another letter, dated May 24:
Lucy’s been proposed to three times in one day. Once from Dr Seward and once from a man from Texas named Quincey Morris, two proposals Lucy turned down. Both men promised to be Lucy’s friend for life.
The third proposal came from Holmwood. Lucy accepted.
Dr Seward’s diary isn’t written down but recorded in a phonograph, like a very early voice recorder. It’s the day after Lucy turned him down, and Seward is trying to distract himself by working hard.
He runs a mental hospital, so he goes to look in on his patients. One of them, RM Renfield, is both interesting and possible dangerous.
Quincey tells Arthur (Holmwood) to remember the fun they’ve had together on hunting trips in America. He then invites Arthur out for a drink with Jack Seward.
They want to congratulate Arthur for getting the girl, even though they are both disappointed, too.
Arthur accepts the invitation.
Mina is now in Whitby, a Yorkshire coast-town in England, and she describes the scenery. She likes waling up above the harbor to an old church there. There’s this great view from the church and a quaint little churchyard filled with old graves.
She up there, writing in her journal when an old man comes up to her. She asks about the superstitions of the area, especially a story about a ghostly “White Lady.”
He tells her, in his thick dialect, that those stories are foolish and a waste of time, but he’d be happy to talk about his own life.
Lucy and Mina walk up to the churchyard again and the old man comeback to chat. They talk about old legends, but the old man says their foolish garbage.
The old man even says that the writings on the tombstones around them are lies. For example, the one that says, “beloved son,” isn’t true because the son wasn’t really loved.
Others, the man says, are really empty tombs because the people actually died at sea.
After the old man leaves, Mina and Lucy talk about Lucy’s upcoming marriage, but that topic makes Mina sad. She hasn’t heard from Harker—her beloved Jonathan—in a while, and she’s worried.
Dr Seward notices that his patient, Renfield, has been capturing flies, using sugar as bait, and keeping them like pets in his cell. Seward says there are now too many flies in the room, and he tells Renfield that he’ll have to get rid of them.
Renfield agrees but asks for three days to get rid of them. Seward agrees.
Renfield has stopped collecting flies, alright. He’s now into spiders. The captures them and feed them his flies.
Now there are so many spiders that Seward has to tell Rendfiel to get rid of them. Renfield agrees. He also swallows a huge fly, which freads Seward out a little.
He gives Renfield a sleeping drug and looks into his journal. Renfield has been keeping track of how many flies he feed to his spiders. The journal is full of number tables.
Now Renfield has captured a tamed a sparrow, which he lured into his cell through the barred window. He’s feeding the bird the spiders.
Renfield has several sparrows now, but now he’s running out of flies and spiders. He asks Seward if he can have a kitten to feed the sparrows to. Seward says he’ll think about it.
Seward notices that Renfield is spreading sugar on his windowsill to catch more flies. The sparrows are gone, a few feathers left behind. Seward thinks Renfield ate them himself.
Based on what he’s seen, he classifies Renfield as a “zoophagous” or “life-eating” maniac.
All this focus on work helps Seward forget about Lucy.
Mina is getting more and more worried about Jonathan, and now she’s worried about Lucy, too. Lucy has started walking in her sleep.
She did it when she was little, but doing it now is more dangerous.
Mina still hasn’t heard from Jonathan. But Lucy seems to be doing better, for whatever reason.
Lucy has stopped walking in her sleep, but now something else about her is strange, something Mina can’t pin down exactly. She’s worried about her friend again.
Mina still hasn’t heard from Jonathan. A huge storm is out at sea. Mine sits at her usual spot, in the churchyard overlooking the town, when the old man, Mr Swales, comes up and starts talking to her.
He says he feels he’s about to die soon. He apologizes for the way he talked about the dead in the cemetery before. He didn’t mean to offend anyone.
Through the conversation, he keeps looking at a ship he can see out on the ocean, coming toward the harbor. He says that there is something strange about the way the ship is being steered.
Newspaper Article, August 8
This article talks about the storm that hit town on the day the strange ship came in. As the storm became stronger, the townspeople came out to the cliff to watch the ship struggle to come in.
Everyone saw how strangely it was being steered. The stronger the storm grew, the more people were sure the ship would be sunk before getting to harbor.
At it got closer, the people saw why the ship was being steered so strangely. The pilot was dead, tied to the helm and flopping around with the force of the wave. Somehow, the ship continued toward shore.
The ship made it to the beach. As soon as it did, a big dog jumped out and ran off, disappearing.
Mina find out that the ship that beached itself was from a town on the coast of the Black Sea. Its cargo was nothing but a bunch of boxes filled with dirt.
No one could find the big dog that ran away, though they tried hard to look for it.
Mina got permission to copy a translated version of the Captain’s Log from the ship into her journal, which she does now:
The voyage starts out fine, but then things start to go wrong.
July 16—one member of the crew goes missing.
July 17—somene tells the captain that a strange man has been seen aboard the ship. The ship is searched.
July 24—another man goes missing. After a big storm hits, yet another man goes missing.
August 3—the first mate says he saw something horrible, which he only calls “it.” He swears he’s going to kill “it.” The captain worries that the first mate is going crazy. Finally, the first mate throws himself off the ship.
The captain finally figures out what “it” is. He doesn’t throw himself off the ship. But he does tie himself to the helm with a rosary in his hands to keep “it” away.
That’s how the log ends.
Mina reports that the captain will have a full funeral, one befitting a hero, because he stayed on the boat to the death. Mina wants to attend.
The old man from the churchyard has been found dead, his neck broken. Mina and Lucy went to the funeral of the captain on the same day.
By the way, Lucy has started sleep walking again, and Mina keeps having to put Lucy back in bed again.
After the captain’s funeral, Mina and Lucy go for a walk. When they get back home, Lucy is tired and goes right to sleep. Mina writes in her journal commenting on how pretty Lucy is.
Mina wakes up in the middle of the night and realizes that Lucy isn’t there. She searches the house and can’t find her, so she throws some clothes on and runs outside.
Mina wonders if maybe Lucy went up to their favorite spot up on the cliff. She looks up to see Lucy there in her white nightgown, a tall, dark figure bent over her. From down here, Mina can make out his pale face and red eyes.
Mina runs up the hill. When she gets to Lucy, the dark stranger is gone. Mina takes Lucy back to the house, and Lucy makes her promise she won’t tell anyone about this sleepwalking adventure. Mina agrees.
The next morning, Mina finds two tiny holes in Lucy’s neck, but she thinks they came from when Mina was pinning a blanket around Lucy’s neck.
That night, Mina actually locks Lucy in her room. When Lucy sleepwalks again, she can’t leave the room.
Mina is still locking Lucy up at night, tying the key to her own wrist. That night, Mina wakes up to find Lucy standing at the window, pointing out. Mina sees a giant bat there, flying around.
Mina and Lucy are sitting at their favorite bench around sunset. Everything around them is bathed in red light, and Lucy mumbles something about red eyes. Mina assumes it has something to do with her sleepwalking, but she doesn’t push the subject.
That night, Mina locks Lucy up and goes for a walk. When they comes back to the house, from outside, she can see Lucy leaning out the window. She rushes up to see Lucy asleep on the windowsill, her hand on her throat.
A really big bird is on the sill with Lucy, but it flies off.
The next morning, Lucy looks pale and tired.
Mina is very depressed. She still hasn’t heard from Jonathan and now Lucy is just getting weaker. The holes in Lucy’s neck are not healing. Instead, they’re just getting worse.
The first letter says that some boxes that were recently sent to Whitby need to be sent to London, to an estate called Carfax.
The next letter reports that everything has been taken care of.
Mina’s spirits are up a little because Lucy seems to be doing a little better, even though she’s still feeling weak.
When they’re sitting together in their favorite spot, Lucy finally tells Mina about what she remembers from her sleepwalking. She says she kind of remembers something long and dark with red eyes.
Mina hears from her dear Jonathan! It turns out that he’s incredibly sick, and he’s been at a convent in Budapest, and he’s writing just now because he’s finally strong enough to dictate a letter for one of the nuns to write and send.
Mina glues the letter into her journal. The nun adds to the letter that Harker has had a terrible fever, but he’s finally pulling through. The nun adds that if Mina wants to come, she can nurse him back to health and even married him in Budapest.
Mina packs and leaves immediately.
Remember Renfield? Well, he’s been acting even more strangely than normal. Seward questioned him about it, and all Renfield said was that “the Master is at hand!”
On the other hand, Seward is so distracted with Rendfield that he doesn’t think about Lucy much anymore. For this he is grateful.
That night, Renfield manages to escape the asylum. He runs off to the neighboring estate, Carfax. Seward and the attendants find him outside the old chapel of the estate, talking through the doors at someone. They take him off, think he’s just crazy.
Renfield, as he’s being dragged away in a straight jacket, yells out, “I shall be patient, Master!”
Mina writes this letter from Budapest, and she calls herself Mina Harker, which means she and Jonathan are now married.
She says that, when she first saw Jonathan, she was shocked at how bad he was. The nuns explain that he went through some kind of shock that gave him a brain fever. Jonathan gave her his journal, saying that he doesn’t know if what he lived through was real or not, but she had to keep the journal safe just in case.
That’s when the priest came in a married them. Jonathan unable to even leave the bed.
Lucy congratulates Mina for her marriage. She reports that she’s getting better every day.
Arthur’s been visiting Lucy, and they been going horseback riding and fishing—you know romantic date things. Even Lucy’s mother is getting better now.
They are to be married on September 28.
Renfield is more calm now, and he keeps saying that he can wait.
Renfield escapes again, and he ends up right back at the chapel door in Carfax. They catch him and bring him back. Renfield doesn’t put up a fight at all.
Lucy has returned to London from her trip to the seashore. She’s feeling very weak again and is having strange dreams that prevent her from sleeping well.
Lucy wants her mother to sleep in her room with her, but her mother doesn’t want to. Lucy remembers that she heard a flapping sound outside the window last night, but she doesn’t know what it was from. Maybe a bat? Also, her face is getting paler and her neck is sore.
Arthur asks Dr Seward by letter to come and see Lucy because of her worsening condition.
Later, Arthur sends a telegram to Seward saying that he must go see his father, who is also ill. That means he must leave Lucy alone.
Seward, having gone to see Lucy, tells Arthur that Lucy doesn’t have any actual disease, even though it’s obvious that she’s ill. Lucy is also trying to hide her sickness from her mother.
Seward’s even run a blood test on Lucy and reports that there’s nothing wrong with her blood, although she doesn’t seem to have enough blood in her body for some reason.
Seward says he’s going to call a colleague from Amsterdam, Dr Van Helsing. He specializes in strange sicknesses and might be able to help Lucy.
Van Helsing says he’ll come as soon as possible to see Lucy. Apparently he owes Seward a favor because Seward saved his life one time.
Seward tells Holmwood about Van Helsing’s visit. Van Helsing was concerned, although he didn’t know what the sicknesses was. He needed time to think to about it. Van Helsing said he’s return if needed.
Apparently, Van Helsing and Lucy shared a private conversation.
Renfield has started getting “restless” in the middles of the day. Renfield says that he’s been abandoned and he’ll have to “do it himself.” He asks Dr Seward for more sugar to start collecting flies again.
Seward sends one telegram to Van Helsing saying that Lucy’s getting better, then, a few days later, he sends another saying that she’s worse and he better come back and look at her.
Seward tells Holmwood that Lucy isn’t doing too good. He softens the truth of her illness, though, to not worry Holmwood too much.
Van Helsing comes back and looks at Lucy again. He thinks he knows what’s going on, but he doesn’t say anything to Seward yet.
Lucy is very pale and thin and bony.
Van Helsing says she needs a blood transfusion, something cutting edge at the time. Seward volunteers to give some of his blood. But, just in time, Homwood comes back and takes the responsibility to give blood.
After the transfusion, Lucy seems to be doing much better. While Lucy is sleeping, Van Helsing sees the marks on Lucy’s neck and he’s alarmed, but he doesn’t explain why.
Holmwood leaves to return to his father, who’s on his deathbed. Van Helsing tells Seward to stay with Lucy all night and call is anything strange happens.
Lucy sleeps well through the night. When she wakes up, she tells Seward that she doesn’t want to go back to sleep because of all the strange dreams she been having.
Seward says he’ll stay with her throughout the night. If he sees she’s having a nightmare, he’ll wake her up. Satisfied with this, Lucy goes back to sleep. The next morning, Seward goes back to the asylum to check on his patients.
Seward is having a hard time. He’s not sleeping at night because he’s staying with Lucy, and now he’s not sleeping in the day because he’s too busy at the asylum.
Lucy sees how bad he looks and tells him to sleep on the couch outside. She’ll call if she needs anything during the night.
Lucy says she’s feeling much better these days, especially because she knows that Seward is outside.
Van Helsing wakes Seward up the next morning. Seward explains that Lucy was doing much better the night before so she had him sleep out here. They go in together to see how she is.
Lucy’s doing worse than ever. She needs another blood transfusion right away.
Seward give the blood this time, but both men agree to not tell Arthur about it, since he could get jealous.
After the transfusion, Lucy goes back to sleep, and she looks better but still weak.
Van Helsing agrees to stay and watch Lucy that night so Seward can go home and get some rest.
Lucy seems better and Van Helsing is happy about it. Van Helsing puts several garlic flowers in Lucy’s room, explaining that they are medicinal. He puts them over the window and even around Lucy’s neck.
Both Lucy and Seward are skeptical, but they accept it, even though Van Helsing won’t explain any more.
Lucy doesn’t understand about garlic flowers, but she leaves them where Van Helsing left them. She thinks he’s a nice old man. She decides she likes the scent and goes to sleep.
Seward and Van Helsing go to Lucy’s house together. Lucy’s mom greets them inside and reports that she took all the stinky flowers out of Lucy’s room during the night.
They rush up to look at Lucy, who is doing worse again and needs another transfusion. Van Helsing volunteers this time because Seward is still weak from donating blood before.
After the transfusion and a good sleep, Lucy seems a little better.
Lucy has been sleeping very nicely for a few nights now. Van Helsing insists on the garlic flowers in the room, and that seems to make a difference.
She says she heard a bat outside her window, flying around like it was angry.
This article reports on a wolf that escaped from the zoo in London. The journalist interviews the zookeeper and asks about the escaped wolf.
The zookeeper says the wolf was very nice, despite its name, Berserker.
But the day before the escape, a strange man in black came and stood before the wolf’s cage. Even though the zookeeper warned the man about the wolf, he said he had experience with wolves and actually started to pet the animal!
But that night the wolf’s cage was ripped open by something very strong and Berserker was gone.
Just as the journalist is finishing the interview, the wolf in question comes walking up, body full of little cuts from broken glass.
Sewar is working in his office when Renfield barges in with a knife and attacks him. Seward manages to evade the blades attacks, but he is cut on the wrist, blood pours out onto the floor and Renfield gets down and starts licking the blood up and drinking it.
Seward gets a telegram from Van Helsing, which has arrived late from some reason. He rushes to see Lucy.
Lucy reports in this note that she still feels weak, but that the flowers around the room at night help a lot. She wakes up at night from the sound of flapping outside.
Lucy’s mother comes in and Lucy asks her to stay with her for a while. Suddenly the flapping comes back outside and a wolf crashes its head through the window pane before running off.
Lucy’s mother dies on the spot from fright, she pulls Lucy’s flower necklace off in the confusion.
The servants come in from the noise, but they start to freak out from what has happened. They go pour themselves a drink to calm down, but the drink has been spiked with medicine—including opium—and they fall unconscious.
So Lucy is left alone with her dead mother and sleeping servants.
Seward gets to Lucy’s house at the same time as Van Helsing. They both rush in to check on Lucy. When no one answers the door, they break the door in. The servants are all asleep on the floor.
They rush up to Lucy’s room to find Lucy unconscious and her mother dead.
They wake Lucy up and go to revive the servants. Lucy needs another transfusion, but who can give it to her?
Just then, Quincey Morris (from Texas) shows up with a message from Arthur. He quickly volunteers to help Lucy out by donating blood.
Later, Seward talks to Quincey about Lucy’s condition. He doesn’t really understand what’s going on because Van Helsing hasn’t explained anything.
While asleep, Lucy takes out a piece of paper from a pocket in her nightgown and starts ripping it up. They take the paper away from her and see it’s the note she wrote the night before.
Lucy is sleeping strangely still. She sleeps heavy and wakes up weak.
Mina and Jonathan are back in London now. Mina asks about Lucy’s mother and Lucy’s wedding plans with Arthur.
Obviously, Mina’s been out of the loop about everything that’s been happening.
Dr Hennesseay writes to report on how Renfield is doing, since Seward has been away taking care of Lucy.
Renfield broke out again and went to the house next door again, this time attacking some men that were moving boxes there. He hurt one of the men, but Hennessey and the attendants managed to stop him from doing anything else.
Mina says that Mr Hawkins, Harker’s boss, has died. They are very sad about this.
The good news is that Hawkins left he entire business to Harker.
Seward’s Diary, September 20
Authur’s father is dead now, so Arthur has inherited the title of Lord Godalming.
Seward is watching over Lucy. He notices that her canine teeth look longer than usual, but he assumes it’s just a trick of the light or something.
When Lucy is awake, she pulls the garlic flowers closer to her neck. When she sleeps, she pushes them away. Van Helsing comes to see her and notices that the puncture marks there have disappeared completely. He tells Seward that she will die soon, so they need to call Arthur.
When Arthur comes, Lucy says she wants him to kiss her. But when Van Helsing sees her canine teeth, he pulls Arthur back.
After a moment, Lucy looks normal again, only weak. Then Van Helsing allows him to kiss her. In her tired voice, she asks Van Helsing to watch over Arthur and give her peace. He promises to do so.
Seward tells Van Helsing that it’s all over. Van Helsing says this is only the beginning, although he still won’t say what’s happening.
Seward makes the funeral arrangements for both Lucy and her mother. Van Helsing asks permission to go through Lucy’s diary. Arthur, who is grief-stricken, agrees.
Van Helsing puts a crucifix and some garlic flowers on Lucy’s body in the coffic. He privately tells Seward that, once the funeral is done, he wants to cut off Lucy’s head and remove her heart. Seward is, understandably, shocked by this.
Van Helsing insists it is necessary and that Seward will soon understand.
The next night, Van Helsing says that the head removal won’t be necessary because one of the servants stole the crucifix from Lucy’s coffin.
It’s hard for Mina to believe that Jonathan is a big boss now. She’s still worried about him after his illness. He may still be seeing things. He was out on the street the day before and he saw someone that made him freak out. All he would say was, “It is the Count, but he has grown young.”
Mina has also found out that Lucy and her mom are both dead.
Aruthur has returned to his estate. At the funeral he said that he felt already married to Lucy because of the blood transfusion. Van Helsing though that was funny because Arthur didn’t know that three other men had also given her blood.
Seward wasn’t in a laughing mood. He’s very upset that Lucy is gone.
This article talks about the mysterious happening of the neighborhood where Lucy lived. It says that small children have gone missing. When the children were found later, they could only say they were with a beautiful lady.
The children had small cuts on their necks.
Jonathan hasn’t been sleeping well and Mina’s worried about him. She starts to read his journal from Transylvania.
Mina has been reading Jonathan’s journal, and she’s completely freaked. She’s sure he’s either gone insane or he’s gone through something truly terrible.
She starts to transcribe the entire journal (written in shorthand) with a typewriter.
Van Helsing asks Mina to send any letters Lucy sent her recently. Mina replies by telegram saying that Van Helsing can come that same day.
Mina is eager to meet Van Helsing. She wants to know about Lucy and she hope he has some advice about Jonathan’s condition (because he’s a doctor).
She’s typewritten her own journal for Van Helsing to read if he wants.
Van Helsing arrives and Mina gives him the journal entries. He reads it all and then asks about Jonathan. Mina ends up giving Van Helsing Jonathan’s journal, too.
Van Helsing, after reading Jonathan’s journal, writes to Mina to tell her that everything written there is true. Mina writes back to invite him for breakfast.
Mina tells Harker that Van Helsing has confirmed everything in the journal, he starts feeling better right away.
Van Helsing asks for Jonathan’s help in dealing with the Count. Jonathan agrees. Van Helsing says that he and Mina must go to London right away.
Van Helsing asks Seward about the injuries of the missing children. Seward says they look a lot like Lucy’s injuries.
Van Helsing tells Seward that the bites on the children’s necks were made by Lucy herself.
Seward can’t believe Van Helsing would say the Lucy is alive and attacking children. Van Helsing offers to prove it. They have to go spend the night in the churchyard.
They go to Lucy’s tomb, Van Helsing opens Lucy’s coffin… and Lucy’s not there!
Seward says someone must have stolen the body. Van Helsing just suggests they wait around.
Some hours later, Seward sees something white moving in the trees. They find a child that’s been left here. They leave the child with the police and go back to London.
Van Helsing takes Seward to go see the coffin again, although Seward doesn’t see the point. When they check, Lucy’s there! He body is still fresh, even though she’s been dead a week.
Seward finally puts it together: Lucy is a vampire. He wants to cut off her head, but Van Helsing thinks they need to tell Arthur first.
Van Helsing is going to Lucy’s grave to watch her. He’s leaving the note in case something happens to him.
If something happens to him, he’s leaving Seward in charge of finding and killing Dracula.
After sleeping on it, Seward doesn’t believe Van Helsing. The old doctor must have gone crazy.
Meanwhile, Van Helsing got Arthur and Quincey together and asked them to go the Lucy’s tomb at night and help him take off Lucy’s head. Arthur, of course, objects, but the two men do at least agree to accompany Van Helsing to the churchyard.
They men get to the tomb and open the coffin to find it empty. Van Helsing tells the young men that the coffin is empty at night but that during the day Lucy’s in there and undecayed.
They go out and wait. Van Helsing puts a communion wafer in the tomb’s entrance so Lucy can’t get in.
Vampire Lucy arrives, sexy and scary at the same time. She’s carrying a child, who she drops when she sees the men watching her. She calls out to Athur, but Van Helsing stops him from going to her. Then the doctor holds up a crucifix.
Lucy retreats to the tomb but can’t enter because of the communion wafer. Van Helsing asks Arthur permission to kill her. Arthur, still in shock, manages to tell the doctor to go ahead.
Van Helsing removes the communion wafer and Lucy rushes into the tomb. The doctor replaces the wafer on the door to keep her tramp inside. He says they’ll come back in the daytime to finish her off.
The men go back to Lucy’s tomb and find her lying there. Van Helsing pulls out a stake and hammer and says that this is the only way for her soul to be free. But who will do the dirty work?
Arthur volunteers. He drives the stake through her heart. Lucy struggles at first, but then she falls still. Finally, she looks like the normal Lucy again.
Van Helsing sends Quincey and Arthur out of the tomb so he and Seward can finish the job. They cut off her head and fill her mouth with garlic flowers.
When they all meet up outside, Van Helsing says they must also find a way to kill Dracula.
They make a plan to meet in Seward’s house in two day. Jonathan and Mina will be there, as well.
Mina and Jonathan are going to Seward’s house, part of the Asylum where he works. Before the meeting, Van Helsing has given Seward a copy of Mina and Jonathan’s journals to read.
When Mina arrives, she sees Seward recording his diary into a phonograph. She gets excited about the technology and wants to hear it say something.
Seward is reluctant because most of what he’s said lately has been unpleasant. Besides, it’s not easy to just go back and find a specific recording.
Mina insists and encourages Seward to read her diary while she listens to his recent entries. He hasn’t had a chance to do the reading yet, so he agrees. Mina also offers to transcribe his recordings with her typewriter.
Mina and Seward have now listened to/read each other’s diaries. Everyone’s in the know now.
It’s hard for Mina to believe all that she’s heard in Seward’s diary about Lucy’s death and becoming a vampire. She copies it all down with her typewriter. She even thinks about putting all the things that’s been written so far in chronological order.
When Mina and Jonathan put all the notes together in chronological order, Seward realizes there’s a connection with what Renfield’s been doing and what the Count’s been doing.
When Seward checks on Renfield now, he seems completely normal. What is Dracual doing now?
Jonathan is on his way to meet Mina in London. First, he went to Whitby to ask about the mysterious cargo that the Count had shipped to England. (The ship that crashed, remember?)
Apparently, the cargo was fifty boxes of common dirt.
Harker gets to London and finds out that all fifty boxes were delivered to Carfax.
Mina’s Journal, September 30
Mina is happy to be with Jonathan again. Quincey and Arthur have arrived, too. Mina gives them documents to look over—the chronological record up to now.
Arthur breaks down and cries on Mina’s shoulder because of Lucy’s death. Mina does her best to comfort him.
Mina wants to see Renfield. Seward allows it.
Renfield is very nice to Mina, but he does warn Mina to stay in Seward’s house while she’s in London.
Van Helsing shows up. He has only good things to say about Mina, complementing her intelligence.
The group gets together that evening in Dr Seward’s study. They talk about what powers Dracula must have. He can control the weather and animals. He can vanish into a cloud of dust and he’s very strong.
They’re going to have to work together to kill him. Van Helsing says they have the advantage of science. Plus, the Count loses his powers during the day. They have weapons the can hurt him, like garlic, crucifixes, holy water, communion wafer, and so forth.
Apparently, Dracula can only sleep on dirt from his home country. So they plan to pour holy water in all fifty boxes of dirt so he can’t sleep there.
They decide to go to Carfax and look around, even though it’s already night time. They tell Mina to stay home, though.
They are about to leave for Carfax when Seward finds out Renfield wants to see him. They all go together to see what he wants.
Renfield begs to be allowed to leave. He’s acting completely sane. They decide to wait until morning and make the decision then.
Harker’s Journal, October 1 (5am)
The others don’t know why Seward wouldn’t let Renfield go, but Seward says it’s because he thought Renfield would try to help Dracula somehow.
The men break into Carfax. Van Helsing has brought crucifixes and communion wafers as weapons.
They go to the chapel first, along with a team of trained terrier dogs. The place is dusty and full or rats. The dogs kill off the rats. The men find the boxes of dirt, but there are only 29 here. That means that there are 21 boxes left somewhere else. But where?
They go back to Seward’s house to get some sleep. Jonathan notices that Mina looks pale.
Van Helsing and Seward have a conversation with Renfield, but the man doesn’t want to talk to them. Seward tells Van Helsing that Mina should stay home when they hunt Dracula. This isn’t a job for a lady.
Mina isn’t happy about staying home last night, and this is made worse because Jonathan won’t tell her about anything.
Last night, she wasn’t able to sleep. Frist, she heard the dogs barking while they killed the rats next door, then Renfield yelling in his cell.
When she finally did sleep, she dreamed about this pillar of mist with two red eyes.
Mina doesn’t sleep well again. She asks Seward to give her something to help her sleep. She takes it and goes to bed.
Jonathan talks to one of the guys that picked up the boxes of dirt and took them to Carfax. These were the guys Renfield attacked before. He gives a little bribe to help the man remember.
The man says he took nine boxes to a property in the Piccadilly neighborhood.
Jonathan goes to the lawyer the procured the sale of that property so he can find out who bought the place. The lawyer won’t tell Harker, but he will send a note to Arthur, who’s now a lord, that night with the answer. Satisfied, Jonathan goes back to the group.
Mina isn’t looking to well. She’s pale and grumpy.
The group decides to go investigate the house in Piccadilly to see just how many boxes are there and look for clues. That might be hard because, unlike Carfax, Piccadilly is a busy neighborhood, even at night.
Seward is confused about Renfield’s constantly changing moods. He also suspects Renfield is working for Dracula.
The Lawyer reports that the new owner of the house in Piccadilly is a man named Count De Ville (as in Devil).
Arthur and Quincey go to get horses from Arthur’s house, just in case. Jonathan is asking around about this Count De Ville. Van Helsing is researching more about killing vampires.
Seward reports all this, but then he gets a message that Renfield was in an accident and is now covered in blood.
Seward gets to Renfield’s cell and find his face has been smashed by something and his back is broken. Van Helsing comes in with a surgical case. He manages to operate and save Renfield’s life.
When Renfield wakes up, he says the Dracula did this to him.
You see, a few days ago, Dracula came in the form of mist and asked to come in. Renfield invited him in. Later Dracula was able to come in through the same window because he’d already been invited once. Now, Renfield knows that Mina has been bitten. When Dracula came in a third time, Renfield tried to stop him, so Dracula smashed him to the ground.
Van Helsing and Seward get their anti-vampire weapons and rush to Mina’s room. They find Jonathan is unconscious. Dracula is there, forcing Mina to drink his blood from a cut in his chest.
The men advance with their communion wafers and crosses. Dracula turns to mist and disappears.
They wake Jonathan up and ask Mina how she is. She explains about her dreams and how, when Dracula was touching her, she was like in a trance.
Apparently, the Count said that he and Mina were meant to be together.
Jonathan is upset about Mina being targeted. He write in his journal so he won’t go crazy. The group gets together to discuss what they’re going to do.
Mina says she’d rather die than become a vampire. Van Helsing says he’d do it for her—that is, kill her—if necessary. But if they can kill Dracula, his power over her will die with him.
They decide to pour holy water in the boxes in Piccadilly and Carfax. That way, Dracula will have nowhere to go and hide during the day. (NOTE: Dracula can still go out in the sunlight in this book. He just loses his powers during the day.)
But how will they get into the house in Piccadilly?
They decide to do it in the middle of the day, dressed like professionals and with the help of a locksmith. If they don’t look suspicious, no one will suspect anything.
Arthur and Quincey go to find a locksmith. The others will wait behind and join in only when the house is opened.
Meanwhile, Van Helsing wants to make sure that Mina is safe. He puts Garlic flowers all around her room. He also blesses her with holy water. When the water touches her forehead, it actually burns her, leaving a mark. They say a prayer together and leave Mina there.
They go into Carfax first, opening all the boxes and putting a communion wafer inside on the dirt.
Then, they go to the house in Piccadilly, which has now been opened by a smith. They find out that one of the boxes is missing. Dracula must have moved one to hide somewhere else.
Seward notes that Jonathan’s hair is turning gray from the stress of all that’s happening. Van Helsing has been doing research on Dracula’s life—his real life—hundreds of years ago. Dracula was once a scholar, but now his brain has probably frozen to that of a child.
They get a message from Mina. She says she saw Dracula leaving Carfax, heading for the city.
Van Helsing warns them to be ready with their anti-vampire weapons. Jonathan is excited to get a chance to kill the monster.
Suddenly, Dracula appears. Jonathan attacks with a giant knife, but Dracula evades the blade. The rest close in, crosses up.
Dracula retreats from the crucifixes, he yells taunts as he gets away.
The group goes back to Seward’s house. Mina is happy to see they’re all safe. They tell her what happened.
Mina says she actually feels pity for Dracula. Like Lucy, he’s trapped in his condition of being undead. If they can manage to kill him, they’ll really be freeing his soul.
Mina wakes Jonathan up in the middle of the night, saying she heard someone in the hallway. It turns out to be Quincey. He’s taking his turn guarding the room.
The next morning, Mina says she wants to see Van Helsing right away. She says she’s realized that Dracula’s power over her is weakest around dawn. She wants Van Helsing to hypnotize her. Maybe they’ll be able to take advantage of her connection to him to know where he is.
It works: They discover that Dracula is asleep on a ship. The ship’s anchor is still down.
They figure that Dracula is trying to escape. Van Helsing doesn’t like this. Dracula will live forever, but whenever Mina dies, she’ll become a vampire unless Dracula is dead.
Van Helsing leaves a message on the phonograph for Harker, saying that he should stay with Mina while they rest go after Dracula.
Mina is happy to learn the Dracula may have left the country. While waiting for news. Jonathan and Mina keep reading through all the journals.
They all get together to talk about how to find Dracula. They figure he must be going back to Transylvania (because he needs more dirt to sleep on), so they’ll start by checking ships heading to that part of the world.
They ask around and find out there is a ship heading that way, but it already sailed.
The group decides that they’ll take the train across Europe and beat Dracula to the destination.
The next day, after a good night’s sleep, everyone feels a little better.
Seward has noticed that Mina looks more and more like a vampire. He’s concerned because she could unconsciously help Dracula. He tells Van Helsing and they agree to start keeping plans from her because the information might get to Dracula.
They want Jonathan to stay in England with Mina.
Mina tells Jonathan not to tell her anything about their plans. She’s also afraid that Dracula will know what she knows because of the connection they have.
Jonathan doesn’t like this, but he promises to keep things from her.
The next morning, Mina asks to be hypnotized again. She seems more like herself around dawn or dusk.
She insists on going with the group to kill Dracula. She says that, if she’s alone with Jonathan, she may be forced to obey Dracula again and sneak out. She wants to come along, but she doesn’t want to know anything about where they’re going.
Van Helsing goes to get tickets for the train. Everyone else get’s their will in order, since they might not survive to come back.
Mina gets the group together at dusk, when she’s more herself. She makes them all promise to kill her if she starts becoming a vampire. They all promise—even Jonathan.
She then asks them to read her the burial service now, in case later a normal funeral isn’t possible. Jonathan reads it to her.
They’ve made it to Varna, a port on the Black Sea, waiting for the ship that Dracula should be on.
Van Helsing has been hypnotizing Mina every morning and evening, so they know exactly where they Count is.
They’re still waiting.
Still waiting. They finally get a telegram saying the ship has just entered the Black Sea, so it’s getting closer.
Seward’s writing by hand now. He didn’t bring his big phonograph along on the train trip.
Dracula’s ship is less than a day away now. Meanwhile, Mina is getting worse. Seward and Van Helsing are worried.
The ship still hasn’t arrived. It should have arrived by now. Mina still hears lapping water when she’s hypnotized, so they know Dracula’s still in the ship. But where is he?
The group find out that the ship arrived in a different port: Galatz.
They have to wait until morning to take a train for Galatz.
Mina is feeling better, like Dracula’s influence is lifting. Van Helsing thinks Dracula’s realized they’ve been using their connection to track the Count, so he’s back away with the influence.
This is good for Mina, but it’s bad because they can’t track Dracula without that connection.
Now they have to think smart and guess where Dracula will go. Seward uses criminal psychology to estimate where Dracula will be.
Van Helsing hypnotizes Mina again, and she hears oars dipping into the water and men shouting. She things Dracula isn’t in the box anymore. He’s out on the ship.
Hypnotized, Mina says Dracual is on some kind of boat. She doesn’t get anything else before she loses the connection.
The group is at Galatz now. Van Helsing, Jonathan, and Seward go to the port to find out about the ship Dracula was on. Arthur goes to the local embassy to get some help. Quincey takes Mina to the hotel to rest.
The captain of the ship is very helpful in answering the men’s questions. He says that the entire trip was very fast, as if the wind were cooperating with them. There was a box on board labeled Count Dracula. It was picked up by a lawyer named Hildesheim.
They find Hildesheim, who says that a Mr de Ville from London contacted him and instructed him to take the box and give it to a group of Slovaks to take down the river.
The problem is, Hildesheim doesn’t know which river.
Mina is trying to figure out where Dracula is. She studies some maps of the area and makes some notes. She figures the best way for the Count to be transported is by water. She guesses that the Slovaks are using the River Sereth because it passes closest to Castle Dracula.
Arthur and Jonathan take a steam boat right away to chase down Dracula. Quincey and Seward take horses along the river’s banks. Mina and Van Helsing go by carriage directly to Castle Dracula.
Jonathan doesn’t want Mina to go to the castle, even with Van Helsing there to protect her.
Nonetheless, they all get ready and go their ways.
Arthur knows what he’s doing at the helm of a steamboat, since he owns a few. Jonathan and Arthur take turns driving and sleeping. They keep going for days. They ask every boat they pass if they saw an boat with cargo ahead, and they say yes, but it’s going really fast.
Jonathan, on the boat, is worried about Mina.
Nothing new happening for Quincey and Seward. They’ve been riding for days with no news.
They also ask travelers if they’ve seen a boat up the river.
Mina is enjoying her trip to the Castle; the Transylvanian countryside is beautiful. Van Helsing hypnotizes her again but gets nothing. Dracula has completely cut off the link between them.
Mina is worried about Jonathan.
Mina says she and Van Helsing are traveling quickly, and she still loves the view. She has noticed how superstitious the people are.
Mina drives the carriage while Van Helsing gets some sleep for a while. They should be at Borgo Pass by morning.
Van Helsing is worried about Mina. She’s lethargic and doesn’t want to eat. The cold weather can’t be helping, either.
Van Helsing is recording what happens now only because Mina is too weak to keep up with her journal.
Castle Dracula comes within sight. Van Helsing stops the carriage and makes a fire. They’ll need to camp out here and approach the castle in the morning.
Still worried about Mina, Van Helsing draws a ring around her in the dirt and put Communion wafers in the ring.
The horses get spooked during the night.
Van Helsing calms them to see the three brides of Dracula arrive in a mist, but they can’t get closer because of the ring of wafers.
The next morning, Van Helsing can’t wake Mina up and the horses are dead.
The steamboat had a run in with some rocks, and this slowed them down for a while. If it weren’t for that, they’d already have caught up with Dracula.
During the morning, they see a group of gypsies loading a box into a wagon and hurrying away. They must be carrying Dracula to the castle.
Van Helsing leaves the sleeping Mina in her protective circle and goes to the castle alone. Because he’s read Harker’s diary, he knows his way around a little, so he can find the chapel.
He finds the sleeping brides and kills them the same way he did with Lucy.
He also finds Dracula’s empty grave and puts holy water in it. Dracula’s running out of places to sleep.
He returns to Mina and finds her awake.
Mina and Van Helsing wait at the bottom of the mountain, below Castle Dracula. From where they are, they see the gypsie riding along with the box in their wagon. Dracula must be inside.
Meanwhile, the whole group gets closer.
Arthur yells at the gypsies to stop, but they won’t listen. The gypsies form a ring around the wagon.
Quincey, Jonathan, Arthur, and Seward force their way passed the ring of gypsies and to the wagon. They can easily overpower the gypsies because they have rifles while the gypsies have only knives. Quincey does take a large cut to his side, though.
The top gets knocked off the box, and Dracula is there, completely still and asleep.
They attack, cutting off his head and stabbing him through the heart. His body turns to dust and blows away. The gypsies run off, scared to death.
Mina says she saw a look of peace on Dracula’s face before he disintegrated.
They rush to help Quincey, who is still bleeding very badly. He lives long enough to see Mina’s red scare (the one on her forehead from the hole water) disappear. Then he dies.
A final note from Harker, from seven years after the death of Dracula, tells us how everyone is.
Mina and Jonathan now have a son, who they call Quincey.
Arthur and Seward and still good friends, but now they are both married.
Even Van Helsing is fine, now like an uncle to their little boy.
Yossarian is ready for Dobbs to kill Colonel Cathcart and tells him so, but Dobbs is no longer interested because he has completed his missions, and is waiting to be discharged, refusing to believe that the number may be raised again. Yossarian learns that Orr crashed his plane into the ocean while he was in the hospital and managed to survive, now offering to show Yossarian how to survive a crash landing, and also to explain why a naked woman was hitting him with a shoe in Rome, but Yossarian declines. On Orr’s next mission, he crashes his plane into the ocean yet again, but he disappears this time, presumably drowned.
Scheisskopf has become a colonel and has joined with General Peckem, much to the soldiers’ dismay, though Peckem only promoted him in hopes of getting a leg up on his competition, General Dreedle. Scheisskopf is not all that thrilled about his new position because he could not bring his wife with him, and also he would not be able to have parades every day as he did before.
Cathcart’s squadron is set to go on a mission that involves bombing an undefended village for the sole purpose of taking superb photos to impress General Peckem with. When Cathcart sees that Scheisskopf is there as well he is upset and feels uncomfortable but manages to give a briefing anyway, pleased with how well he operated under pressure.
Yossarian goes on a mission with McWatt and totally loses his mind, fearful that he will die and crazy over flashbacks of Snowden. McWatt seems concerned about Yossarian after the mission is over though Yossarian feared McWatt would be mad at him. Yossarian is having a sexual relationship with Nurse Duckett, and they like to have sex on the beach, but when Yossarian is near water he thinks of the men he knows who have died underwater like Orr and Clevinger.
One day when McWatt is buzzing the beach (flying low) he accidentally gets too close and cuts Kid Sampson in half with his propeller. He immediately flies higher and crashes his plane into a mountain, killing himself. Cathcart is extremely upset, but this turn of events and raises the mission quota to sixty-five.
Cathcart learns that Doc was on the plane with McWatt and has been killed as well and raises the quota once again, this time to seventy missions. Doc was not actually on the plane but because Yossarian had been altering the flight logs to make it look as though Doc was logging his hours the paperwork showed that Doc was on the flight.
Doc’s wife gets a letter stating he is dead, which saddens her, but she realizes she will be getting a sizeable income from his insurance for the rest of her life, and she starts flirting with men and dies her hair.
The men are mad with Doc’s forgeries because their mission quota has increased and he is no longer allowed to practice medicine, which substantially upsets him. He writes a letter to his wife to ask her to tell the authorities he is alive but happy with the money she will be receiving she moves herself and the children out of state and does not give Doc a forwarding address.
As the days go by, and the weather starts to get colder Orr still never returns and Kid Sampson’s legs are still on the beach because no one will retrieve them. Yossarian’s tent is overrun with new young guys, who have never been to battle.
The new guys called Yossarian “Yo-yo” and he develops an overwhelming hatred for them almost to the point of homicidal. The guys remove Mudd’s belongings and burn Orr’s wood which prompts Yossarian to ask Halfoat to move in and scare them but he says he is going to move into the hospital where he will finally die of pneumonia. Yossarian decides that rather than kill them, he will go to Rome with Hungry Joe on leave.
In Rome Yossarian misses Nurse Duckett and goes looking for Luciana, sure that he will not find her. Nately sets out to find his whore who is being held in a hotel room by some men who refuse to let her go, hoping to rescue her.
When Nately does find her, she is relieved and falls in love with him. Nately dreams of moving his whore and her sister to America with him and having his military brothers all live near him and work for his father.
The whore is upset when she learns Nately no longer wants her to prostitute herself, and also wishes her not to speak to the old man he got into the argument with the last time he saw her. Despite her anger, she is sad when Nately leaves and is quite upset with Yossarian after he breaks Nately’s nose with his fist.
On Thanksgiving Milo gives all of the men whiskey and they get a little rowdy. They panic when they hear the sound of machine guns though they quickly realize that it is a prank but Yossarian is still infuriated. He makes to go after them with his own gun but Nately tries to stop him which results in Yossarian breaking his nose.
In the hospital wing, Yossarian feels terrible for Nately’s nose, and they see the Chaplain who has faked an illness to be there. When Dunbar begins to scream hysterically the other men follow suit and Yossarian seems confused. Nurse Duckett tells Yossarian that the doctors plan to make Dunbar “disappear” and when Yossarian goes to tell him, he finds that Dunbar is missing.
Halfoat finally dies of pneumonia, just as he expected he would, and Nately finishes his mission quota though he does not want to go home because he cannot bring his whore with him. Yossarian wants Milo to help him convince Nately not to go on anymore missions, and Milo immediately goes and asks that he, himself, be put on more dangerous missions because he feels he has not done his duty while running his operation.
Cathcart volunteers to run the syndicate while Milo is on missions but when he finds out how much work is involved he changes his mind and tells Milo that other men can do Milo’s missions and Milo will be rewarded for them with medals of Honor. The mission quota is increased to eighty and the men are sent on a particularly dangerous mission which ends up killing twelve of the men, Dobbs and Nately included.
The Chaplain is arrested for various crimes, which are unspecified at the time, much to his shock. He is accused of forgery, of being Washington Irving, and of stealing plum tomatoes. A document that Yossarian forged the Chaplain’s name on some time ago is the only evidence that they have against him, and they sound ridiculous trying to justify their accusations.
The Chaplain is set free until they figure out how to punish him and he goes right to Colonel Korn to complain about the number of missions the men have to complete. Korn informs the Chaplain that all of the higher-ups agree with the idea of increasing the quota to whatever they want, and anyone who disagrees, such as Dr. Stubbs have been sent away.
Peckem moves into his new office which is Dreedle’s old office and learns that Scheisskopf has been promoted to general, making him Peckem’s new commanding officer which makes Peckem extremely aggravated. Peckem refuses to take any phone calls from Scheisskopf and cannot believe that such a dimwit could be in charge.
Apparently the leader of special services was being promoted to general, which would have been Peckem had he not already been promoted and instead went to his successor, Scheisskopf. Peckem is now stuck following Scheisskopf’s orders, as absurd as they may be, and he wants everyone to march.
Yossarian refuses to participate in any more missions and out of pity for the loss of Nately Cathcart and Korn decide to send him to Rome on leave. When in Rome Yossarian tells Nately’s whore about his death and she attacks him with a knife, as does her little sister, convinced that Yossarian is to blame for his death. She follows him everywhere he goes, including back to base, determined to seek revenge for Nately’s death, though it was not Yossarian’s fault.
The officers ask Yossarian to fly in nondangerous missions, but he refuses, knowing that someone else will be asked to fly in the more dangerous ones in his stead. He finds out that Nately’s whore, her sister, and the other ladies living in their building were flushed out by M.P.’s, and he is worried about them.
Yossarian and Milo head to Rome which is in a state of shambles and ruins beyond what he imagined. He learns from the old woman who lived in the whores’ apartment building that they were presented with a Catch-22, that the soldiers could do anything that the people could not stop them from doing, and the other Catch-22 was that they did not have to present the people with a written Catch-22.
Yossarian knows that Catch-22 does not exist, but it sticks around because people believe in it. Yossarian looks for Nately’s whore, and Milo gets distracted by a business opportunity. As he wanders he sees rapes, beatings, and corpses everywhere he looks, he even encounters Aarfy beating and raping a maid. M.P.’s burst in and apologize to Aarfy for interrupting him but arrest Yossarian who is doing nothing wrong for being in Rome without a pass.
Colonel Cathcart and Colonel Korn tell Yossarian that they want to send him home but because of Catch-22 they cannot. They decide that they would like to promote him to major so his only job would be to watch over them, but, in return, he would have to like them and approve of what they are doing. Yossarian does not want to betray his fellow soldiers, knowing that they will still have to fly an unspecified number of missions, but he thinks it is his only way out so he accepts. As he is leaving the office, he is stabbed by Nately’s whore who is dressed in disguise.
Yossarian is operated on in the hospital and when he awakens he see the Chaplain and Aarfy. He promises the Chaplain that he will not take Cathcart and Korn’s deal, though he had previously agreed to it. He realizes that his only friend who is still alive is Hungry Joe but the Chaplain tells him that Joe died in his sleep, apparently smothered by a cat.
Yossarian drifts in and out of dreams and remembers the day that Snowden died, telling Yossarian “I’m cold.” In an attempt to help Snowden, Yossarian opened his suit, but his entrails all spilled out and, in the entrails, Yossarian read, “The spirit gone, man is garbage”.
Yossarian tries to explain to General Danby about the offer Cathcart, and Korn gave him and why he cannot take it, as he must honor his friends who have died needlessly in war. He believes that he has no hope when the Chaplain tells him that Orr has washed up in Sweden, alive, and Yossarian knows that he does stand a chance. He gathers his clothes and leaves the hospital, headed toward Sweden to leave the war forever. As he is leaving Nately’s whore tries to stab him one more time, but he escapes her and runs off as fast as he can toward Sweden.
Vin sees Elend, now returned from his meet with the koloss army, inured and resting. Zanes comes and says that Cett was the one that planed the attack at the voting ceremony. Vin gets angry and decides to attack Cett. Zane and Vin attack the keep that Cett has been staying at in Luthadel. Together, they kill guards and hazekillers. Fueled by rage, Vin kills quickly, working her way to Cett’s room. She realizes that Zane is using atium, while she has none, and yet she’s killing just as easily as he is. They finally get to Cett’s room, where he is with his son. Vin fights them at first, but when she discovers that neither of them is an allomancer and that Cett doesn’t have a single allomancer with him, she leaves them behind, injured and scared.
The crew sees that Cett’s army is now leaving, a result of Vin’s attack on his keep the night before. Elend does not know why Vin attacked Cett like that. Some in the crew think she’s crazy, but Elend just sees her as determined. They also discover that the “coins” Jastes has been using to control the koloss are fake, wooden coins painted gold. Elend goes to find Vin, who is hiding in the city. He finds her with OreSeur’s help. She says she must leave Luthadel and go north, to Terris. Elend says he trust her to do the right thing. They have one large bead of atium, and Vin gives it to OreSeur to hold for her.
Sazed and Tindwyl compare notes, studying the rubbing and other references they’ve managed to find. Tindwyl admits that she doesn’t believe in these prophecies, her interest in them being purely academic. Sazed, on the other hand, thinks Vin might actually be the next Hero of the Ages. While they talk, they discover that someone–or something–has torn a piece from one of the transcription pages. Vin comes in, while they try to figure out at what point were they both gone or occupied to not have seen an intruder going through their things. Vin asks Sazed how she can know if she’s in love. They talk about trust. After Vin leaves, Elend comes in and starts asking similar questions. Elend thinks he and Vin are too different to make a couple, but Sazed says that, to him, they are more alike than they think. After Elend leaves, Sazed realizes that Luthadel is going to fall soon; he needs to get both Elend and Vin out of the city before that happens.
Sazed calls a meeting with the members of the crew: Dockson, Breeze, Ham, and Clubs. He doesn’t invite Elend, Vin, or Spook. They talk about how the city is sure to fall. Straff apparently is in no hurry to take Luthadel. Instead, he’ll back off and let the koloss attack the city first. The koloss will win and enter the city, pillaging as they go. Then, with the koloss weakened and tired from the fight, Venture will ride in like a hero and save the city, defeating the koloss and taking Luthadel for himself. Sazed says that Elend and Vin need to get out of the city before these things happen. He wants Spook and Tindwyl to go with them. The rest of the group will have to stay and fight and die. Meanwhile, Vin feels she must follow the drumming she hears all the time. In Straff’s camp, Zane is attacked by his father’s men. He defeats them, but spares his father. He leaves, saying that tonight he will take Vin with him and leave Luthadel. He tells Straff that he should wait for the koloss to attack and then take the city.
Vin is in her room with OreSeur when Zane visits. He wants her to come with him, but she says she can’t because she doesn’t want to leave Elend. When Zane sees that she won’t go, he attacks her. They fight. When Zane starts to burn atium, Vin asks OreSeur for the large bead, a bead Zan had given her before. OreSeur doesn’t respond to her command. Vin discovers that OreSeur is not OreSeur. He is TenSoon, Zane’s kandra. Of course! There was no other spy. The bones they found were TenSoon’s and he had killed OreSeur! Zane corners Vin, but Vin uses a massive soothing to take control of OreSeur/TenSoon and attack Zane from behind. She then cuts the bead of atium fro TenSoon. But this is another trick. The bead is lead, with only a thin layer of atium. Soon, Vin is left helpless against a Mistborn killer with atium. Vin decides that Zane can see what she’s about to do, or, rather, what she plans on doing. If she attacks without thinking, though, she can, see in Zane’s reaction what she is going to do, only to change it at the last possible second. The trick works, and Vin defeats Zane. After Zane dies, she thanks OreSeur/TenSoon for helping her win. His contract is void, and he must return to his people. Vin goes to find Elend.
Elend is in his study when Vin comes in, bloody from her fight with Zane. She tells him that she killed him. He calls for Sazed, who comes to help with the wounds. While she is there, on the ground, she asks Sazed if he knows any wedding ceremonies. Of course, he knows hundreds. Vin asks which one is the shortest, and Sazed recalls one that only requires a declaration of love between the bride and groom before an ordained witness. Vin and Elend both say that they love each other, and Sazed declares them married. The wounds are clean, and Sazed sends Vin to get some rest. He also gives them a fake map to find the Well of Ascension. If the couple follows the map, they’ll be gone from Luthadel for a long time.
Elend and Vin prepare to ride out of the city. Tindwyl decides to stay in Luthadel. Spooks gets ready to go, and Allrianne will ride out, at Breeze’s insistence. So the four of them ride out, Vin quickly having to fight pursuers from Straff’s army. Once they are free, Allrianne breaks off to find her father’s army. Meanwhile, some of the crew watch as the escape, now sure of their own coming doom. Straff Venture hears of the escapes, but he has problems of his own now. He’s getting sick, which he knows is the result of poisoning from his son, Zane. He sends for his mistress, Amaranta, to fix him an antidote, but he discovers that she isn’t preparing what she normally does. She is actually killing, as she has for a long time. There never was any poison. Zane never tried to kill his father. But Amaranta, in her constant fixing of teas for Straff, has been causing him to become addicted to a rare drug. Without that drug, Straff will die. Straff, in a rage, kills Amaranta and then swallows as much powder from her medicine cabnet as he can, hoping to accidentally swallow some of the drug he needs before he loses consciousness.
Allrianne has made her way to her father’s camp, with the help of some bandits she’s tamed with her rioting. Her father, Cett, is not happy to see her. She convinces him to go back and join the winning party in the battle that is to come, although Cett promises that will likely be Straff. Meanwhile, Elend wakes up on the third morning out of Luthadel. He and Vin share a tent now, and he finds himself surprisingly comfortable on the hard ground, with Vin next to him. They get up and prepare the fire. It’s just the three of them: Elend, Vin, and Spook. Meanwhile Straff wakes up in bed. His men have taken care of him, and they’ve isolated the plant he needs to stay alive. When he hears that Vin and Elend have left the city, the men ask if they should attack now. Straff says no; they should pull back and wait for the koloss. Sazed meets with the others to plan a strategy for when the koloss attack. They plan to have a group of men at each gate. Saze and Tindwyl get a little time together, but then the warning drums begin to beat.
Vin is thinking about how the mist is staying later and later every day, instead of just disappearing with dawn, when she feels the pulsing of the mist spirit coming from Elend’s tent. She runs in, just in time to see the outline of that spirit lift some kind of knife to attack Elend, who is sleeping on the ground. She attacks the spirit and it disappears. Elend wakes up and never knows what was happening. She leaves Elend to sleep a little more and goes out to speak with Spook. He thinks someone is following them. Meanwhile, Sazed and the crew get ready, since it looks like the Koloss are about to attack. Men are at each gate, with one crewmember there to help. Straff sees that the koloss are attacking, but he tells his men to wait. Vin and Elend attack the camp of people that have been following them. It turns out to be Jastes. He’s lost control of the koloss, so he just left them. Elend kills Jastes because of his crimes against Luthadel. Vin discovers that the drumming sounds are getting softer, meaning the well is to the south, in Luthadel, and not in the Terris mountains.
Breeze works at his assigned gate, soothing soldiers by the dozen, helping them to be brave and fight well. The koloss pound at the door, while men atop the wall rain arrows down on the attackers. The koloss throw rocks up in return, smashing archers. Meanwhile, Vin runs towards Luthadel, burning pewter. She knows she will run out of pewter long before reaching Luthadel, and she wonders if the effect will kill her. But still she keeps running. Breeze and Clubs talk while the koloss continue to beat the gate. They blame themselves for being stupid enough to be in this mess, and they blame Kelsier for getting them into such responsibilities. Just then, the gates burst open. Meanwhile, Sazed gets word that Breeze’s gate had fallen. He doesn’t think he can really help. He notices that there is a crowd of skaa standing behind the defense force. When Sazed confronts them, telling them that they should flee to safety inside the city, the skaa answer that they are there to witness the fall of the koloss at the hands of Vin, who they are sure will return and make her appearance at Sazed’s gate. Then the gate breaks. Sazed musters his stored strength, growing in size, and faces the lead koloss, shouting for the men to fight. Vin, half collapsing and out of pewter, reaching a small village. At first she thinks to ask for pewter, but then she remembers how she used to travel with Kelsier on a path of metal bars in the ground. She asks for horseshoes, using them to “walk” by leaping, placing horseshoes ahead of her and pulling the ones behind to place further. In this way, she uses the horseshoes like stilts to help her travel in the air.
Outside Luthadel, Straff Venture sees that the koloss have now broken into the city gates. His men are ready to attack the koloss from the rear, but Straff decides to wait longer. Sazed, fighting the koloss, realizes that they need to get the gate closed again in order to survive. Using strength and weight, he manages to fight off the koloss and get the gate closed again. While getting a little break, a messenger comes and says that Tindwyl’s gate fell over an hour ago. Meanwhile, Clubs and Breeze are attacked and forced to run. Clubs is killed, while Breeze hides in a building. Dockson contemplates the root of their failure. He attacks a koloss, only to be cut down. Straff decides not to swoop in a save the city while the koloss are weak. Instead, he’d rather wait for the koloss to kill everyone and burn the city. Then Straff will move in. Meanwhile, Sazed fights on, wondering what happened to Tindwyl. He feels he is going to die, but then Vin arrives and starts killing koloss. Breeze is found by Ham and some others. They want to try to escape.
Vin continues killing koloss, several at a time. Sazed, outside Lord Penrod’s keep, begs the newly appointed king to go with them as they try to escape. Penrod insists on staying inside his keep. Vin continues to fight the koloss, but now she is almost completely out of pewter, steel, and almost every other metal. In desperation, to save some skaa from certain death, she super-soothes them, like she’d done to TenSoon, controlling the koloss with her mind. Sazed is standing outside Penrod’s keep when Vin walks up with koloss in tow. She orders Penrod to gather his men and put out the fires in Luthadel. Vin will take care of the koloss throughout the city. Later, Sazed finds Tindwyl’s dead body among the slain soldiers. He feels that all the faith, all the religions, he has always treasured is now useless. His life, he believes, has been a sham.
Straff wakes up and takes a sample of the drug he needs to stay alive. He gathers his men, expecting to be able to take the city now. But the koloss come out with the remaining soldiers of Luthadel. Vin jumps from among the koloss, sailing through the sky with a giant sword, cleaving Straff and his horse in half on impact. Allrianne watches these events from her father’s camp. She charges after them to help Luthadel’s army, forcing her father and his men to ride after her. Straff’s army surrenders, and Janarle, Straff’s general, is named the new Lord of the Venture army. Janarle, Penrod, and Cett all swear loyalty to Elend as their Emperor. Vin, needing rest, leaves Sazed in charge of the Empire until Elend can return to Luthadel.