Outlander Book Club: Book 2, Chapter 16 breakdown

Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ
Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ /
2 of 3
Outlander Season 2 — Courtesy of STARZ
Outlander Season 2 — Courtesy of STARZ /

Just the Outlander chapter

We’ll start with a look at the chapter, with has Claire commenting on how things had fallen into a routine at this point. Claire was seeing Louise and working at the hospital, while Jamie still had Fergus stealing letters so he could decode them.

It changes when Jamie and Claire are invited to Versailles again. Jamie continues to beat Duverney at chess, which means Duverney wants to play more and more. He wants to win, but I think he also likes to have someone who challenges him. It’s a great chance for Claire to speak to the ladies at Court, who are definitely fed up of hearing about the Jacobite plans. It sounds like nobody has any faith in Charles succeeding, and Louis isn’t happy that Charles came to France uninvited.

The focus can’t remain on that. During the night, Claire suffers from stomach pains. She dreams of giving birth to a snake rather than a baby, and she wakes up fearing the worst. Is she having a miscarriage?

Since she’s at one of the King’s apartments, the King’s doctor is the one who sees her. He wants to bleed her, but Claire refuses to allow anyone to do that. It’s one of the servants there who realizes that Claire’s problem is actually poison.

No, not poison. Claire realizes that it’s bitter cascara.

There’s only one person she knows who will sell that. She heads to Master Raymond, who shares that he’s only sold bitter cascara to two people (who actually wanted poison). Both were servants. One he recognized and the other he didn’t. Claire doesn’t think the Vicomte from Versailles’s wife is the one who wants to kill her, so it has to be Comte St. Germain, who was at Versailles the day Claire was “poisoned.”

Raymond takes her through the back, which is where she sees all the various skeletons he has. The only ones that make her shudder are the ones belonging to the larger-than-now wolves, hinting at something much more about Master Raymond than he is telling us.

A set of drawers also have Cabalistic symbols on them. Master Raymond says they’re to keep people out, but when he pulls out a necklace of a white stone that is supposed to protect again poison, she does start to question things.

That’s even more so when she goes back to Jamie, who has come into the shop. They both question him having drawers with Cabalistic symbols, knowing they’re not just for design.

When Master Raymond sees who Claire’s husband is, his demeanor changes. He’s heard people mention the Frasers in places where names are not said with blessings in mind. He knows that someone wants to kill one or both of them, so Jamie will need to do some digging. Murtagh will be tasked with following Comte St. Germain.