Dracula

by: Bram Stoker

Chapters XXII–XXV

Summary: Chapter XXII

In his journal, Harker recounts the end of Renfield’s story: before escaping the asylum, the count pays one last visit to the lunatic, breaking his neck and killing him. Harker and his compatriots go to Carfax the next day and place a Communion wafer in each of Dracula’s boxes of earth, rendering them unfit for the vampire’s habitation. Before the men proceed to the count’s estate in Piccadilly, Van Helsing seals Mina Murray’s room with wafers. When he touches her forehead with a wafer, it burns her skin and leaves a bright red scar on her forehead. Mina breaks down in tears, calling herself “unclean.”

Summary: Chapter XXIII

The men obtain keys to Dracula’s other houses around the city. Holmwood and Morris hurry off to sterilize the twelve boxes that are stored in London, while Harker and Van Helsing leave to do the same to the boxes in Piccadilly. Reaching Piccadilly, the men find only eight boxes—the ninth is missing. Mina sends a message that Dracula has left Carfax, and the men anticipate that he will soon arrive at Piccadilly in an attempt to protect his boxes. The men lie in wait, and Dracula arrives. As it is daytime, however, the count is largely powerless. Van Helsing’s crew attempts an ambush, but Dracula leaps out a window and escapes.

Despite Dracula’s taunts, Van Helsing believes that the count is probably frightened, knowing that he has only one box remaining as a safe resting place. Van Helsing hypnotizes Mina in an attempt to trace Dracula’s movements. Under the trance, Mina’s unholy connection to the count enables her spirit to be with him. Mina hears the telltale noises of sea travel, which indicates that the count has fled England by sea. Jonathan records his fears that Dracula may elude them, lying hidden for many years while Mina slowly transforms into a vampire.

Summary: Chapter XXIV

Van Helsing’s band discovers that the count has boarded a ship named the Czarina Catherine, which is bound for Varna, the same Russian port from which Dracula sailed three months before. Van Helsing delivers an impassioned speech in which he declares it necessary to defeat Dracula for the good of humankind. He claims that the group “pledged to set the world free.”

Van Helsing notes the effect that the “[b]aptism of blood” has had on Mina and insists that she should not be troubled with or further compromised by their hunt for the count. The men make plans to intercept Dracula in Varna, and Mina insists on accompanying them, saying that her telepathic connection to Dracula may aid their search. Van Helsing concedes, and Harker departs to make the necessary travel arrangements.

Summary: Chapter XXV

Before departing, Mina asks the group to pledge that they will, for the sake of her soul, destroy her if should she transform into a vampire. The men take a solemn vow to comply with Mina’s wishes. On October 12, they board the Orient Express and make their way to Varna, where Van Helsing arranges to board the Czarina Catherine immediately after its arrival in port.


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