Quote 5

Alba did not see Esteban Garcia again until he was standing next to her in the university parking lot, but she could never forget him. She told no one of that repulsive kiss or of the dreams that she had afterward, in which Garcia appeared as a green beast that tried to strangle her with his paws and asphyxiate her by shoving a slimy tentacle down her throat.

Esteban Garcia is Esteban Trueba's illegitimate grandson; Alba is Esteban Trueba's legitimate granddaughter. Alba does not know who Esteban Garcia is, but he haunts her life. They meet, seemingly by accident, three different times. The scene in the university parking lot, which is the source for these reflections, is the third. They will meet one more time, when he will torture her.

The two sides of Esteban Trueba's character are represented and played out in his two grandchildren. Esteban Trueba's two most notable traits are his love for Clara and his mistreatment of the peasants. The first produces Alba; the second produces Esteban Garcia. Just as everything in the novel comes back around, although not always s in the most fair of manners, Alba and Esteban Garcia's relationship works as the revenge of the peasants for Esteban Trueba's actions.

The blurry lines between dreams and reality are demonstrated here. The strange creature who haunts Alba's dreams turns out to be a very real person who has literally lurked around her house and her life waiting for a chance to avenge himself on her. All of the different times of the novel also come to play here in this passage: the moment when Alba meets Esteban Garcia in the parking lot, all of the other times she has met and will meet him, the time before either of them was born when the nightmare was unleashed, and the time after their last meeting when Alba will try to make sense of it all.