"Sure," he murmured. "There it is." And he watched with now-gentle sorrow and now-quick delight, and at last quiet acceptance as all the bits and pieces of this house mixed, stirred, settled, poised, and ran steadily again. "The Happiness Machine," he said. "The Happiness Machine."

After Douglas made the ill-fated suggestion to Leo Auffmann that he invent a Happiness Machine early in the summer, Leo spent most of his time working on the machine. It was only when the machine threatened to destroy his family that Leo realized how foolish the endeavor was from the beginning. He realizes now that his family is the only Happiness Machine he will ever need and the only one that he will ever want. His wife Lena had been trying to tell Leo this, but he wanted to make the town happy. Finally Leo understands that happiness is not something to be perpetuated by a machine but rather his way of life. Simply living with his wife and children is happiness for Leo Auffmann.