A Wrinkle In Time: Novel Summary: Chapter 10

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Absolute Zero

Meg returns to consciousness only slowly. Mr. Murry confesses to Calvin that he had been on the point of giving in to IT when they arrived. He says that going to Camazotz was an accident; he had intended to go only to Mars, but the tesser went wrong. Tessering turned out to be more complicated than the scientists had expected. He says that playing with time and space is a dangerous game; they really know very little about it. Meg finally comes round, and realizes she is lying in an open field. She is paralyzed because she is frozen from head to toe. Again, she is upset that her father has not saved her. He confesses that he does not know where they are, and says she is frozen because they went through the Black Thing. They had to leave Charles Wallace behind because tessering might have been too much for him, given that he was controlled by IT. Meg is annoyed and impatient, and demands to go back to Camazotz immediately to rescue Charles. She no longer feels optimistic that things will work out well in the end, because her father has failed her. As feeling starts to return to her body, they all see three figures approaching them across the grass. These creatures are tall, eyeless and have tentacles, with heads but not faces. Meg at first feels only revulsion for them, but as one of the beasts picks her up in its tentacles, she feels warm and safe.

Analysis
The Christian underpinnings of the story are apparent in the dualistic cosmology of good and evil, and the occasional quotation from the Bible. It is also present in more subtle form in this chapter. Mr. Murry tells Calvin that he was on the point of giving in to IT when Meg arrived, and "hope and faith" returned. Hope and faith are two of the qualities described in St. Paul's famous chapter on love (I Corinthians, chapter 13). Paul writes that the greatest virtue is not hope or faith, but love. Meg will find this out for herself in the final chapter. At the moment, cannot understand much because she is too busy blaming her father and Calvin for their predicament.

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