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Chapters VIII–IX

Summary Chapters VIII–IX

Summary: Chapter VIII

On August 10, Mina awakens to find Lucy’s bed empty. She goes outside to find Lucy and sees her in the churchyard, reclining on her favorite bench with a dark figure bending over her. As Mina approaches, the figure looks toward her, exposing a pale face and gleaming red eyes. By the time Mina reaches Lucy, however, the figure is gone. Lucy is apparently asleep but gasping for breath, so Mina wraps her in a shawl and leads her home. When Lucy wakes, Mina finds “two little red points like pin-pricks” on her friend’s neck, and decides that she must have accidentally pricked Lucy while helping her pin her shawl.

Lucy attempts to sleepwalk again the following two nights, but Mina thwarts Lucy’s efforts by locking the bedroom door. Later, the two women go for a walk together. As the sun sets, they see a dark figure in the graveyard, and Lucy comments on the red glint of his eyes. That night, Mina awakes to find Lucy sitting up in bed, pointing to the window. Mina looks outside and sees a large bat fluttering in the moonlight. When she turns around, she finds Lucy sleeping peacefully. During the next few days, Lucy grows pale and haggard, and the puncture wounds at her throat grow larger. Mina worries about the well-being of her friends: about Lucy’s failing health; about Lucy’s mother, who is too ill to bear any anxiety over Lucy’s state; and about the still-missing Jonathan Harker.

Mina’s journal entry is followed by a letter from a Whitby solicitor, ordering the boxes of earth from the Demeter to be delivered to the estate of Carfax, the house Dracula has purchased. We return to Mina’s diary, where she writes that Lucy’s health seems to be improving. News comes that Jonathan has appeared in a Hungarian hospital in Buda-Pest, suffering from brain fever. Mina prepares to leave England to be with Jonathan.

The narrative shifts to John Seward’s accounts of his patient Renfield, who has grown both violent and boastful, telling the doctor that “the Master is at hand.” One night, Renfield escapes and runs to Carfax, where Dr. Seward finds him pressing against the door of the mansion’s chapel, calling out to his master and promising obedience. The attendants return Renfield to his cell, where he begs his master to be patient.

Summary: Chapter IX

Mina writes from Buda-Pest, telling Lucy that Jonathan has changed greatly. He is “a wreck of himself” and remembers nothing of his time in Transylvania. The nun tending to Jonathan confides in Mina that he often raves deliriously about unspeakable things. Jonathan is still in possession of his diary and knows that the cause of his brain fever is recorded in it. He turns the diary over to Mina, making her promise that she will never mention what is written there unless some “solemn duty” requires it. The couple decides to marry immediately, and Mina seals the diary shut with wax, promising never to open it except in a dire emergency. Lucy sends Mina a letter of congratulation.

Meanwhile, Renfield has become more docile, repeatedly mumbling, “I can wait; I can wait.” A few days later, however, he escapes again and turns up once more at the door of the chapel at Carfax. When Dr. John Seward follows with his attendants, Renfield moves to attack, but grows calm at the sight of a great bat sweeping across the face of the moon.