Little Women: Novel Summary: Chapter 13- Chapter 15

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Chapter 47

 

Chapter 13- Chapter 15

 

Chapter 13: One restless day, Laurie spied the March girls walking off together with bags in their hands.  Having nothing interesting to do, and craving a distraction, he followed them into the woods where he found them each working on a project.  Meg was sewing, Jo crocheting and reading, Beth was arranging acorns, and Amy was drawing.  When he was spotted, they said he could stay but he would have to make himself useful.  He took over Jo's job of reading.  After their story was done, they discussed what they would like to do with their lives.  Laurie wanted to live in Germany and be a famous musician, Meg wanted to have a beautiful house and be rich, Jo wanted to be a famous author, Beth wanted to stay at home, and Amy wanted to be a famous artist.  They then discussed Mr. Brooke who had given up his dreams to stay at home and take care of his mother.  Everyone thought well of him for it, and Laurie decided finally, that he too would do whatever it takes to make his grandfather happy, and that he would never leave the old man alone. 
Chapter 14: Jo is writing frantically at her writing table when she declares to herself that she has done her best and leaves the house.  She walks down to the town newspaper office, and frets outside about whether or not to enter.  Finally she summons the courage and goes in, not knowing that across the street Laurie was watching from the pool hall window.  When she comes out, he corners her and asks her why she went.  She made him swear not to tell anyone, and he agreed.  She then told him that she had submitted two stories to the newspaper, and she would find out in a week whether or not they would be published.  In return for her confidence, Laurie told her that his tutor, Mr. Brooke was the one who had Meg's missing gray glove and he kept it in his side pocket.  Jo did not like that at all, and stopped liking Mr. Brooke.  She wanted her sister to be with a rich man so she could have nice things, and Mr. Brooke would never be rich.  Jo and Laurie raced down the road, and while she was recovering, Laurie gathered her hairpins that had fallen out.  Meg came upon them and chastised Jo for racing because it was unladylike.  A few weeks later, the girls were sitting in the parlor sewing when Jo offered to read them a story from the newspaper.  Everyone liked and she declared that she was the one who wrote it.  They all were excited, and she told them that she did not get any money for it, but it was publicity. 
Chapter 15: November comes and the March sisters, Marmee, and Laurie are in the parlor when a telegram arrives.  Marmee opens to find a message saying Father was extremely ill, and her presence was requested immediately.  Everyone cries, and then jumps to action.  Marmee decides to take the train the next morning, and sends Laurie to send a telegram saying so, and to drop a note to Aunt March.  Everyone scattered with different tasks to do to prepare, and Beth went to tell Mr. Laurence.  He came back offering anything he could to help them, even to escort Marmee to Washington where her husband was located.  She told him that it was not necessary.  While Meg was preparing Marmee's things downstairs, she ran into Mr. Brooke who informed her that he had business for Mr. Laurence to do in Washington D.C. and that he would escort Marmee.  This plan seemed acceptable to all.  Evening came and everyone minus Jo was in the parlor again, waiting for the morning departure.  Marmee was worried because she did not know where Jo was so she sent Laurie out to look for her.  As he was leaving she walked in and handed Marmee twenty-five dollars saying it was her contribution to the family.  Marmee was astounded and asked how she had gotten the money.  Jo then took off her bonnet to show that her long glorious hair, her one beauty, was cut short to her head.  She explained that she had sold her hair to the barber to make a wig.  At first, he was reluctant, but his wife convinced him because it was such a good cause.  The family was shocked, but Jo said that she preferred it short anyway, and the extra money would come in handy.  They went to bed, but Jo and Meg could not sleep.  Not thinking anyone was awake, Jo began to cry and Meg asked her if she was all right.  Jo told her how much she just needed to cry over losing her hair but she did not want anyone to know about it.  Meg told her to think of happy thoughts, and Jo asked her what were her happy thoughts.  Meg answered that they were of handsome faces and brown eyes, just like Mr. Brooke.  The girls then fell asleep and Marmee came in later to kiss them and pray for them.

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